Saratoga Week 5 highlights

August 19th, 2021

On Saturday, Saratoga posted an all-sources handle of $32.2 million.

Here is a look back at what bettors found so intriguing and a look ahead at the high-class racing at the Spa.

Got Stormy still loves Saratoga

Got Stormy prevailed in the Fourstardave H. (G1) at 12-1 and again showed her affinity for the Saratoga staple.

She won the 2019 Fourstardave in record-setting fashion and finished second in the race last year.

This year, she bested the males by  1 1/2 lengths, including Maker’s Mark Mile S. (G1) winner Raging Bull, the even-money favorite, and Set Piece, winner of the Wise Dan S. (G2). This “Win And You’re In” qualifying race guarantees the chestnut mare a place in the starting gate for the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1). She finished second to Uni in the 2019 Mile.

A 6-year-old daughter of 2010 Fourstardave victor Get Stormy, Got Stormy was ridden by Tyler Gaffalione for trainer Mark Casse.

“This was maybe even more exciting, because they wrote her off,” Casse said. “I’m really proud. There’s been some bumps along the road with her, but she came when it was time.”

Got Stormy now has seven graded stakes wins, and the Fourstardave was her third Grade 1.

High Oak rises to the occasion

Another longshot dominated in the Saratoga Special S. (G2) — 10-1 High Oak. The Bill Mott trainee crossed the wire 4 1/4 lengths ahead, under jockey Junior Alvarado. The bay colt was fresh off a debut win in June.

“To be honest, I was just a passenger today,” Alvarado said. “He put me in the spot that I wanted and he took me all the way around. When I turned for home, I just had to ask him a little bit, and he took off.”

High Oak’s next target could be the Oct. 2 Champagne S. (G1) at Belmont, which offers a “Win and You’re In” berth to the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1).

Upcoming stakes

An exciting rematch looms in Saturday’s Alabama S. (G1), as Coaching Club American Oaks (G1) winner Maracuja is set to square off against Kentucky Oaks (G1) victress Malathaat.

The card also includes a pair of turf races — the Lake Placid S. (G2) for three-year-old fillies and the Smart N Fancy S. for fillies and mares. The blockbuster Travers S. (G1) card is coming up Aug. 28 and will feature six Grade 1 contests.