How to bet the 2023 Wonder Again Stakes

June 6th, 2023

The New York Racing Association, Inc. (NYRA) has canceled live racing Thursday at Belmont Park due to poor air quality conditions. The Wonder Again will be redrawn Thursday and is rescheduled for Sunday, June 11.

A talented field of eight three-year-old fillies will travel 1 1/8 miles on the Belmont Park inner turf surface in Thursday’s $200,000 Wonder Again S. (G2). Conditioner Chad Brown has a trio of live players in the field, and I will give top billing to one of his entrants.

The lightly raced #1 Venencia (7-2) will make her second run since arriving in the U.S., and she seems poised to make a big late burst in her Belmont bow. By Recoletos, the French-bred filly was a debut winner on the All-Weather at Chantilly in November while traveling 1 3/16 miles at first asking. She made her initial stateside run at Keeneland most recently and rallied from well back behind a slow early tempo to finish a clear third, beaten by only 1 3/4 lengths under the wire.

Venencia has posted four solid morning drills in the interim, and I expect the bay to appreciate the stretch-out in distance after traveling one mile last time out. The top pick will have Irad Ortiz Jr. in the silks once again, and she will save ground throughout from the rail prior to moving to the fore inside the final furlong.

Brown’s #7 Prerequisite (6-1) showed marked improvement when graduating on the course in her second career outing and has a lot of appeal going forward. The $350,000 two-year-old purchase tracked a fast tempo prior to sweeping to the front and finishing with energy in her latest endeavor, and she could receive a very similar trip behind a pair of pacey contenders on this occasion, as well. The Upstart filly drew outside of the speed and will be well-placed approaching the turn for home with Flavien Prat retaining the mount.

Todd Pletcher’s #5 Spansive (7-2) is 2-for-2 in her lifetime and has yet to be headed. A local allowance heroine in her latest outing, the Karakontie filly has won in measured fashion in each of her pair of assignments to date and could have more to offer if challenged late. The Kentucky-bred dark bay will be in the mix from the opening bell under the guidance of Joel Rosario.

Pilot Jose Ortiz opts to stay in the silks aboard #4 Revalita (5-2), who finished a closing second in the Edgewood S. (G2) in her second run in the U.S. The Brown trainee has displayed a nice turn of foot to this stage of her development, and it will be difficult to keep her out of the top three if she shows any improvement on Thursday.

Wonder Again Wagers