These 3 horses should like wet conditions on Super Saturday II

Profile Picture: Vance Hanson

October 2nd, 2015

Wet weather is likely to linger around Keeneland and Belmont Park on Saturday as they place to host to numerous Breeders’ Cup preps and other graded stakes. Here are few major entries that should take to the prevailing conditions.

Thoroughbred Club of America (G2) (Keeneland race 6): Reigning sprint champion JUDY THE BEAUTY is undefeated in four previous starts over the Keeneland main track, albeit on the former Polytrack surface. She’s run just twice this year, tiring late following a long layoff in the Humana Distaff (G1) and then getting outrun by speedball La Verdad in the Honorable Miss H. (G2).

We haven’t exactly seen the Judy of old, which suggests LEIGH COURT (#5, 3-1) might be the one to fear in her title defense of the TCA. She, too, has had a pair of runs this term, setting the pace in both the Royal North (G3) and Presque Isle Downs Masters (G2) before getting passed late by narrow margins.

Her fondness for turf and synthetic surfaces should carry over to an off main track, and she loves the Keeneland strip in general after blowing her TCA rivals away by three lengths last year.

Shadwell Turf Mile (G1) (Keeneland race 9): European invader DUTCH CONNECTION looks tough as the likely favorite, as does horse-for-the-course GRAND ARCH. Another who’s shown a fondness for the local sod, especially when wet, is JACK MILTON (#11, 8-1), who looks like the value play.

A stakes winner in both prior tries in Lexington, including the Maker’s 46 Mile (G1) here in April on soft ground, he might be overlooked a bit after finishing up the track in both the Manhattan (G1) and Fourstardave H. (G2) following wide trips. With the course expected to have plenty of give, he could easily perk up on one of his favorite courses.

Hill Prince (G3) (Belmont race 9): TALE OF LIFE (#11, 5-1) steps up in class after being controversially disqualified from an entry-level allowance win at Saratoga, but his running lines suggest he should fit very well against this field.

Forced to bull his way to the front after lacking room, and bumping a rival the process, he was clearly the best horse in that allowance despite only getting up by a nose. Plus, he was the 7-5 favorite for a good reason.

Two races earlier, Tale of Life had finished one length behind New Bay, eventual winner of the French Derby (G1) and one of the favorites in Sunday’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (G1) at Longchamp. Although up the track in his lone stakes appearance, in the French 2000 Guineas (G1), Tale of Life’s earlier proximity to New Bay, and an easy win over heavy ground at Saint-Cloud to start his career, stamp him as a serious threat to thrive in the expected testing conditions.

(Jack Milton photo: Keeneland/Coady Photography)