A fantastic field of eight sophomores will travel 1 3/16 miles on the lawn in Saturday’s $500,000 Saratoga Derby Invitational S.
Saratoga Derby Analysis
#8 Get Smokin is the confirmed speed in the field and will clear the cast from the outside post. #2 Decorated Invader and #6 Colonel Liam will be closest to the pacesetter heading into the first turn.
Saratoga Derby Contenders
#1 BAMA BREEZE — Rusty Arnold trainee endured traffic over a good turf course at Keeneland when a closing sixth, beaten by just 1 1/2 lengths, in the Transylvania (G3). Honor Code gelding has a fine rail draw, a good turn of foot, and the pedigree to thrive at the trip,as well. Manny Franco will guide the top-three contender.
#2 DECORATED INVADER — Grade 1 victor has been flawless in 2020 and comes off a stylish score in the Hall of Fame (G2) for Clement. Top pick is as genuine as they come, and he smoked a bullet half-mile on the course in preparation for Saturday. Joel Rosario retains the mount atop the star.
#3 NO WORD — Silent Name colt was last seen getting up late to annex an allowance race at Belmont Park for Pletcher. Kentucky-bred was a debut winner at Saratoga as a juvenile, but he will need a career-topping performance to challenge the best ones in this field under Jose Ortiz.
#4 DOMESTIC SPENDING — Recent Hall of Fame third was a nose shy of being runner-up last time out for Chad Brown. Kingman gelding has a powerful turn of foot, and he has as much for improvement as any in the field with just three starts to his credit to date. Irad will be in the stirrups.
#5 GUFO — Once-beaten son of Declaration of War has come out on top in four straight to give Clement a potent one-two punch in the field. Chestnut colt makes his Saratoga debut on Saturday, and he will be dangerous in his second outing since May with an expected step forward. Johnnie V riding adds to his appeal.
#6 COLONEL LIAM — $1.2 million son of Liam’s Map was a sharp allowance winner on the course when making his grassy bow for Pletcher. Gray colt displayed a sharp turn of foot in his recent triumph, and he appears to have a bright future on the lawn with continued development.
#7 FIELD PASS — Lemon Drop Kid colt has bagged four stakes races in 2020 for Maker. Underrated colt ran a pair of big ones on the local green as a juvenile, and the versatile sophomore excels from both on or off the early tempo. Tyler Gaffalione will take the reins.
#8 GET SMOKIN — Speedster from the Bush barn opened up a big early lead and held for second in the Hall of Fame in his most recent endeavor. Get Stormy gelding is the pace of the race from the outside slot, and he could get brave if allowed to dictate modest early splits in the Saratoga Derby. Luis Saez will guide the one to catch.
Saratoga Derby Wagers
- $5 Trifecta Key: 2 with 1,5,7 ($30)
- $2 Superfecta Key: 2 with 1,5,7 ($12)