The first division of the $400,000 Risen Star (G2) will be run Saturday evening as race 12 at Fair Grounds. The 1 1/8-mile race is for 3-year-olds and is part of the 2020 Road to the Kentucky Derby series with 50-20-10-5 points going to the top four finishers.

Top Picks for the Risen Star (1st Division)

  • #9 Mr. Monomoy
  • #2 Silver State
  • #11 Scabbard
  • #8 Enforceable

Betting the Risen Star (1st Division)

  • $20 Win 9
  • $10 Exacta 2, 8, 11 with 9

Risen Star Division 1 Contenders

#1 Digital caught wet tracks in his first two career starts and he won the second one here going 6 furlongs. He came back in a fast allowance race last out going two turns and had the lead in the deep stretch before being run down. The son of the brilliant Into Mischief draws the rail and gives rider Brian Hernandez Jr. many options leaving the gate.

#2 Silver State looked great when he won his career debut by almost 10 lengths. Next out, he was bumped at the start and his late rally fell a nose short going a one-turn mile at Churchill Downs. Drawn in post 9 against a bulky field last out, he was a determined second in his track debut and the son of Hard Spun should have no trouble getting the added distance.

#3 Ready to Roll did nothing in his first two career starts going short on turf and a sloppy main track. Last out at Oaklawn Park, he broke his maiden by over seven lengths going two turns in the mud so now he tries a dry, main track for the first time. I can’t see him getting the soft front-end trip that he got last out.

#4 Perfect Revenge began his career with six starts on the turf and Tapeta last year in Canada. He was claimed for $50,000 at Gulfstream Park by Saffie Joseph Jr., who brought him back there with a fast second as the beaten favorite going a one-turn mile. It looks like they made a smart claim but he would have to improve even more to have a shot against these.

#5 Moon Over Miami broke his maiden by five lengths second time out going a one-turn mile at Aqueduct. Bill Mott shipped him to Gulfstream where he was beaten as the favorite going two turns and am not sure what he is doing in here today.

#6 Shashashakemeup went gate to wire to break his maiden going seven furlongs in fast time at Churchill Downs. He turned back to a sprint here and raced evenly in a wide trip that was caused by a poor break. Last out in the Lecomte (G3) here, he was used hard to contest the pace from post 12 and draws better today.

#7 Blackberry Wine has had six starts but when you narrow it down to going two turns on the main track, he went gate-to-wire both times. Son of Oxbow won last out in faster time than the Lecomte even though he set a slower pace and shows two fast workouts for this.

#8 Enforceable broke his maiden fourth time out going this distance at Saratoga. He raced evenly in two stakes starts then returned here with a good win in the Lecomte. You could argue that he is only 2-for-7, but is bred to keep getting better being by the mighty Tapit out of a dam that was a graded stakes winner and has produced three other graded stakes winners.

#9 Mr. Monomoy was a very impressive maiden winner going short at Churchill Downs then just missed on a sloppy track going two turns for the first time. I liked his third-place finish in the Lecomte when he might have been victimized by an inside trip. The half-brother to champion filly Monomoy Girl, winner of the Rachel Alexandra (G2) over this main track, has tactical speed and should be able to work out a good trip stalking the pace.

#10 Farmington Road broke his maiden last out in his two-turn debut at Tampa Bay Downs as the 1-5 favorite. He needs to improve more but the daughter of Quality Road should get the distance and Javier Castellano gets the mount.

#11 Scabbard was a good second in his two-turn debut then was an even fourth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1). His return off the break in the Lecomte was not much and post 11 will force him to drop back and make one run with Joel Rosario.

How to bet the 2nd division of the Risen Star Stakes