Donato’s Saratoga selections for Sunday, Aug. 15, 2021


The Galway Stakes will be the top race Sunday. Run over 5 1/2 lengths on thef turf, it features a particular horse whose recent runs have her living up to her namesake, Goin’ Good (9-2).

Although a threat on either surface, Goin’ Good has earned her best wins on turf. She bested Illegal Smile at this distance at Churchill Downs on June 12 in a race that brought out the best in both competitors, and one would hope to see that again in this race. Goin’ Good’s Brisnet speed figure in that race is the best that any of the entrants has ever shown on turf, and her workout on Aug. 8 was fast enough to suggest that she did not leave it all on the track in her last race, which she won on a sloppy surface at Saratoga on July 18.

Illegal Smile has not run since her showdown with Goin’ Good, but by proving she could keep up with her, she immediately becomes the entrant with the best chance to capitalize if Goin’ Good does not run up to the best of her capabilities. She switches to jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. for this race, which should further improve her chances of a good run.

Tuscan Queen (6-1) is lightly-raced, but was able to turn it on in the stretch for a clear win at Saratoga on July 23. She and jockey Jose Ortiz are still working out her form, which leaves room for further improvement for her third career race. She is trending in the correct direction, and could offer good value at post time.

Dr B (10-1) is rounding back into form following her layoff from April to June. Her return race at Belmont was underwhelming, but she bounced back in July with a strong second place finish at Monmouth. All her career races have been on dirt, and for her big move to turf, she has been paired with the meet’s leading jockey going into Saturday, Luis Saez. All this suggests the potential for a value play, especially if her price stays in the double-digits.

Sunday’s best bet is Water’s Edge (1-2), who even on his worst day has the speed to be competitive in the fourth race. The field is only six deep, so there won’t be many who can get in his way. From there it is expected to be smooth sailing.

The best value belongs to Devils Sky (15-1) in the seventh race. He made a big jump in his speed ratings from his debut to his second race, and like Dr B, he is the beneficiary of a move to Saez. His post position draw of 11 is tough, but his running style as a closer means it should not affect him as much as it would an early speed type runner. He has the best chance to surprise the spectators.

3-Good Skate, 2-Baja Frog, 7-Skeptical, 1-Pickering Circle.

6-Never Say Know, 9-Kiss The Sky, 10-Flip The Script, 5-Ansel (12-Chileno becomes the top pick if the race moves to the main track).

10-Herald Angel, 1-Social Whirl, 5-Little Dutch Girl, 2-Fuddled (1-Social Whirl becomes the top pick if the race is moved to the main track).

1-Water’s Edge, 4-Saratoga Pal, 3-Devil’s Code, 5-Quickflash.

2-Tap N Glo, 1-Knowing Glance, 3-Gimmick, 6-Positive Sum.

1-Write This Down, 4-Orma, 7-New York Supreme, 3-Black Licorice.

7-Never Explain, 11-Devils Sky, 8-Treason, 5-Mira Mission (15-Business Model becomes the top pick if the race is moved to the main track).

7-Absolute Love, 4-Mongolian Humor, 5-Viradia, 3-Yes I’m Evil.

7-Goin’ Good, 6-Illegal Smile, 2-Tuscan Queen, 4-Dr B.

3-Summer in the City, 12-Italian Twin, 6-Amortization, 4-Kubie Snacks.

Win With Pride (fifth), Power Agenda (sixth), Restored Order (seventh).

Record for meet: 67 for 233.

Categories: Sports

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