Donato’s Saratoga selections for Saturday, July 17, 2021

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The first Grade I race of the Saratoga meet will be Saturday’s Diana Stakes, run at 1 1/8 miles on the inner turf, and a pair of stablemates are looking to make the race their own.

This will be the fourth consecutive race for either Althiqua (3-1) or Summer Romance (4-1), where the other is also entered, and in each of the last three of those races, one of that pair has been the outright winner. Althiqua took the Grade II Cape Verdi at Meydan in the United Arab Emirates in January of this year and Summer Romance countered by winning the Grade II Balanchine, also at Meydan, back in February at the same distance as the Diana. In their first race stateside, Althiqua took the rubber match with a win at Belmont in the Grade I Just a Game Stakes in June.

Althiqua has yet to finish outside the money in her 10-race career, and her workouts suggest she is ready for her Spa debut. With the right pace today, look for her to close well.

Summer Romance should look to set the pace in this one, owning the best early speed among the entrants. She has constantly broken to the lead and should have the opportunity to set herself up for success.

Lemista (5-2) and Harvey’s Lil Goil (3-1) have both performed very well at
1 1/8 miles. Lemista has the potential close on Summer Romance as well if she finds herself in a similar or better stretch position than Althiqua.

First Race

9-Martinez, 8-Sherrif Bianco, 6-I’m Blaming You, 2-Neuro.

Second Race

3-Baby Yoda, 4-Cause of Action, 5-Repo Rocks, 6-Christopher.

Third Race

2-Love and Money, 1-Misspell, 3-Amalfi Princess, 11-Miss Delicious (4-Trumpet Lilly becomes top pick if race is moved to the main track).

Fourth Race

7-Grape Nuts Warrior, Coupled Entry (1-Perpetrate and 1A-Agent Creed), 8-Austrian, 2-Cotton.

Fifth Race

5-Uninvited Guest, 9-Chattalot, 6-Carpe All Day, 7-Montauk Point.

Sixth Race

5-Never Say Know, 3-Rattle N Roll, 1-James Aloysius (11-Chileno becomes top pick if race is moved to the main track).

Seventh Race

Coupled Entry (1-Happymac and 1A-Shekky Shebaz and 1X-Bronx Bomber), 6-Duress, 3-Chimney Rock, 8-Gear Jockey.

Eighth Race

1-Beau Liam, 10-Crowded Trade, 5-Ten For Ten, 11-Wadda U Think Now.

Ninth Race

1-Wit, 9-Headline Report, 2-Candy Landing, 7-Ottoman Empire.

Tenth Race

8-Althiqua, 6-Summer Romance, 7-Lemista, 2-Pocket Square.

Eleventh Race

8-Askin For a Baskin, 7-Ducale, 4-Southern Flag, 3-Deferred Taxes.

Friday’s winners

Quick return (second), November Rein (sixth), Patty H (eighth).

Record for meet: 4 for 19.

Categories: Sports

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