Stakes Plays for Aqueduct on Nov. 12
A pair of stakes events on the lawn will lead the way at Aqueduct on Sunday.
Race 4: Long Island S. (G3)
The 1 3/8-mile affair on the green features seven entered for the lawn in the mostly competitive tilt. Barry Schwartz’s homebred #1 Whatlovelookslike was a fine allowance winner in her lone try at today’s distance, and I expect her to be a tough one to beat on Sunday if she runs to that tally. Trained by Todd Pletcher, the New York-bred daughter of English Channel ran well when a stakes third at a shorter distance last time out and will be poised for improvement off the short layoff in this spot. Irad Ortiz Jr. gets the assignment and will take the race to her foes from the opening bell.
Grade 3 heroine #2 Vergara, Canadian S. (G3) third #3 Atomic Blonde, and the red-hot #4 R Calli Kim will be included with the top selection.
Race 8: Artie Schiller S.
The one-mile contest for the boys attracted 12, with a trio of those entered for main-track only purposes. I expect a swift and contested pace to materialize in the contest and will focus on a pair of runners to compete for the top prize late. Linda Rice’s #1 Pioneering Spirit has been mostly fantastic since moving to the lawn in May and will benefit from having some pace to run at on the cutback in distance. The four-year-old son of American Pharoah has won five of his last seven on the green, led by an emphatic tally in the Bernard Baruch S. at Saratoga three back, and is well drawn on the rail to save ground throughout, as well. Jose Lezcano will be in the irons.
#8 Masen, one of two in the field for conditioner Chad Brown, has class and will take a big step forward in his second start of 2023. The Juddmonte homebred is very quick and appears to be a true miler, so he will thrive with the class relief combined with the stretch-out in distance on this occasion. The Kingman gelding will be forcing the pace from the break with Irad Ortiz Jr. taking the reins.
- $3 trifecta: 1,8 with 1,8 with all ($42)
- $1 trifecta: 1,8 with all with 1,8 ($14)