How to bet the 2024 Hilltop Stakes

May 15th, 2024

A trio of sophomore fillies stand out to me in the $100,000 Hilltop S. at Pimlico on Friday. The one-mile grassy test for three-year-old ladies attracted a field of 10, but I expect the race to come down to just three inside the final furlong. 

Hilltop Wagers

  • $20 win and place #4 Waves of Mischief ($40)
  • $1 superfecta 4,6 with 3,4,6 with 3,4,6 with all ($28)

Leading the way is my top selection, #4 Waves of Mischief (4-1) for conditioner Brendan Walsh. Purchased for $575,000 as a juvenile, the daughter of Into Mischief debuted at Keeneland on April 18 and left quite the impression on me. The bay broke from the rail while favored in the 11-horse field and tucked in behind an honest early pace to the top of the stretch, prior to coming outside and powering home late while finishing fast.

The filly was professional in her first offering in overcoming the post and traffic in front of her, and I think that the sky's the limit for the Qatar Racing color bearer going forward. Tyler Gaffalione retains the ride and I expect him to have the lass forwardly placed from the opening bell. 

#6 She Feels Pretty (7-5) had a fine juvenile season for conditioner Cherie DeVaux that culminated in a close third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) at Santa Anita. The Karakontie three-year-old won at first asking prior to rolling home to an emphatic score in the Natalma S. (G1) at Woodbine, and she has trained well in advance of her comeback, as well. John Velazquez will be in the silks aboard the deserving favorite. 

Flavien Prat will guide second-time starter #3 Expatriate (6-1) for conditioner Chad Brown. The Cairo Prince filly finished well in a game score at Gulfstream Park in her unveiling on February 14 and has been training up to this race ever since. The Kentucky-bred gray displayed a lot of athleticism in that affair and will move forward in her second assignment at a fair number. I expect her to be in range behind a moderate early tempo throughout the contest.