Tim Holland offers his picks for this day of racing in North America at Keeneland, Belmont Park, Monmouth, and Woodbine.
Maidens on turf include #7 Dinn Righ (12-1), who makes her first start for trainer Walsh and has not been seen since finishing second behind a much more experienced rival on the all-weather track at Dundalk in October. Daughter of good young turf sire Karakontie is from the family of Kitten’s Joy and has been working well for Walsh, who wins with 21% of his runners that have not raced for 90+ days. Chestnut can be along from off the pace with Santana riding.
#6 Hendy Woods (10-1) was checked on the first turn but still managed to finish second to the talented Sharing in the Edgewood (G2) in her latest at Churchill over one mile last month. Daughter of Uncle Mo has won three of five career starts for trainer Casse, who wins with 16% of his runners on grass. Filly may be a touch overlooked here with Leparoux up.
Some well-bred maidens on grass include #9 Nubian (6-1), a debuting daughter of Pioneerof the Nile, who is out of English One Thousand Guineas (G1) winner Special Duty. Trainer Mott wins with a slightly low rate of his newcomers but filly has been working well and gets Jose Ortiz in the irons. #11 The Girl Herself (8-1) debuts for 23% first-out trainer Pletcher, and the daughter of American Pharoah is out of Circle of Life, who won the Spinaway (G1). Bay has also been working well, and rider Saez has won with 26% of his rides for the barn in the past 60 days.
George Weaver wins with 18% of his first-time starters and saddles #7 The Promised Road (6-1), who is by 13% turf and good first-out sire Quality Road. $220K yearling purchase is a half-sister to five winners and has been working well for Weaver, who has won with 29% of his runners at this meet. Bay can win at first asking with Rosario in the saddle.
#4 Divided Sky (15-1) makes her first start for trainer Castellano and has not been seen since finishing unplaced after a slow start at Woodbine nearly 13 months ago in her second career outing. Daughter of Society Rock is a half-sister to American Oaks (G1) winner Lady Prancealot and has worked forwardly for Castellano, who won with three of his last 12 runners that had not raced for 90+ days. Bay is worth a shot at likely good odds with Garcia riding.
Trainer Casse wins with 16% of his runners that have not raced for 46-90 days and sends out #11 Heavenly Curlin (6-1), who has not raced since rallying from off the pace to break her maiden over the track and distance in July. $635K yearling purchase is by Curlin and out of a half-sister to Redoute’s Choice whose several wins at the top level in Australia included a score in the Caulfield Guineas (G1). Casse has won with 19% of his runners at this meet, and filly can win again with Wilson in the irons.