I woudn't exactly call yesterday a day to write home about. However, I did pick up three wins yesterday. I know that doesn't sound great, but I will take it. I have seen many handicappers who have more experience and are making a heck of lot more money than me apologizing to their readers for not picking enough winners. Saratoga is always a tough place to handicap races but it seems this year has been especially tricky. The competition at "The Spa" is simply the best in the world.
Today's feature race at Saratoga is the $125,000 Rick Violette Stakes for New York three year olds for 1 1/16 on the turf.
I realize betting the top choice at Saratoga is not always the right play, but Dakota Gold seems to be simply the one to beat in here. Stakes wins in 2 of the last three starts and an a best speed figure of 107 puts this horse at the top of my list with Irad Ortiz aboard.
I also like Coinage with Luis Saez riding for Mark Casse. This horse has an abundance of stakes experience and gets a class drop here. The fact that Coinage has been running against much better make him a threat.
Here are my picks for the rest of the Thursday card: