Value pick for the Jim Dandy Stakes

Profile Picture: John Mucciolo

July 30th, 2021

An excellent field of six will contest the $600,000 Jim Dandy S. (G2) at Saratoga on Saturday. Run at 1 1/8 miles, the storied event is one of a trio of graded tilts on the card and is led by champion #5 Essential Quality, who was a game winner of the Belmont S. (G1) in his latest performance.

The Brad Cox pupil has been a stellar performer since his unveiling as a juvenile and is surely the one to beat while making his Spa debut. But the son of Tapit might not be fully cranked up as he is using the Jim Dandy S. as a prep for the Travers S. (G1) on Aug. 28, and it seems like the right time to try and upend the brilliant colt. He wouldn’t be the first, or last, major horse to get upset at the Spa.

I love the way that Jimmy Jerkens has developed Gotham S. (G3) winner #3 Weyburn to this point, and the sophomore seems poised for a big second half of 2021. The well-bred son of Pioneerof the Nile has run three solid races this season and was a game second to Mandaloun in the Pegasus S. at Monmouth Park in his latest endeavor.

The Ontario-bred three-year-old has been pointed for Saratoga since his sophomore campaign kicked off, and he seems to be thriving as of late. Weyburn shows a pair of bullet morning drills on the course in preparation for Saturday, and the dark bay would not be a surprise to me if he runs his best while making his local debut.

There is not much pace signed on for the Jim Dandy and Weyburn might inherit the lead with a clean break from the gate under Irad Ortiz Jr. If he does, then the talented youngster will have every chance to lead this field from the opening bell.

I will use the Weyburn on top of all my wagers with emphasis on the morning-line choice underneath.

Jim Dandy Wagers

  • $20 win and place #3 Weyburn ($40)
  • $5 trifecta 3 with 5 with all ($20)
  • $2 trifecta 3 with all with 5 ($8)