An excellent field of seven two-year-olds will travel one-mile at Belmont Park on Saturday in the $500,000 Champagne S. (G1). The winner of the “Win and You’re In” challenge series contest will earn an automatic entry to the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) at Santa Anita on November 1. In addition, the top-four finishers in the Champagne will pick up points on a 10-4-2-1 platform in the “Road to the Kentucky Derby” event.
Champagne Stakes Analysis
#5 Gozilla (6-1) is the swiftest two-year-old in the cast and will be on top early with a clean break. #3 Green Light Go (8-5) will never be far back and the morning-line choice will be tracking the pace, likely with debut winners #1 Alpha Sixty Six (5-1) and #7 Tiz the Law (5-2) in close attendance.
#2 Truculent (30-1) and #6 Big City Bob (20-1) will be unhurried in the early stages.
Wagers for the Champagne Stakes
- $20 Exacta Box #3 and #7 = $40
- $2 Trifecta #3,#7 with #1, #3, #7 with #1, #3, #5, #7 = $16
Champagne Stakes Contenders (in post order):
ALPHA SIXTY SIX (5-1) — Intriguing second timer was game in a swift special weight win on debut on this oval. Todd Pletcher pupil has trained well since that performance, and he will appreciate having more ground to work with in his stakes bow. Upset contender will have John Velazquez in the silks.
TRUCULENT (30-1) — Maiden will add blinkers on the turf-to-dirt move, but he looks to be placed in a very ambitious spot in the Champagne. Calumet Farm homebred would be an absolute stunner against these fine prospects.
GREEN LIGHT GO (8-5) — Ultra-talented Hard Spun colt is perfect from two lifetime races, including an impressive 3 ¾-length stroll in the Saratoga Special (G2) last out. The stout two-year-old has missed just one morning drill in the interim, and the Jimmy Jerkens charge is proven on the surface following a fine first-out score over Big Sandy. Junior Alvarado will be in the controls.
THREE TECHNIQUE — SCRATCHED
GOZILLA (6-1) — Wildcard in the cast was a facile sprint winner on debut at Saratoga, which preceded his third-place finish in the recent Hopeful S. (G1). Flatter colt will be the one to catch today and a repeat of his first offering will make him a fascinating contender in this spot. Ricardo Santana retains the mount.
BIG CITY BOB (20-1) — Sapling S. upsetter has paired up big races following an unplaced debut run. Shanghai Bobby youngster faces a completely different field that he squared off with at Monmouth Park, and he needs marked improvement to be in the mix late in the Champagne.
TIZ THE LAW (5-2) — Empire State-bred was sharp on debut at The Spa when dominating in the stretch to win going away, and he was flattered when the runner-up romped in the NY Breeders’ Futurity S. by more than 10 lengths at Finger Lakes on Sunday. Constitution colt draws well on the outside, and has both the pedigree and running style to thrive with the added ground today. Manny Franco picks up the mount.