5- SHIDABHUTI- Finished well through the final furlong in an off the pace win when easily taking her career debut against Sp. Wt. fillies going six furlongs in September at Monmouth. Returned here in January to make her second career start, where she made an outside bid on the turn, took over in upper stretch and kicked away for the score against a field of 3 year old filly first level allowance runners going this one mile trip at odds on in latest. Tries stakes company today and there is still plenty of room for this filly to improve. Should sit a nice trip in here, any sort of expected wetness in the track shouldn’t be a problem and she’s a serious threat in the Busher.
3- RUSSI- Pressed outside the eventual runaway winner for 4 furlongs, before giving way through the stretch when 7th at this state bred Sp. Wt. level going 6 furlongs in the mud in first career start in early January. Has been given 8 weeks since that debut and he’ll return as a gelding for his second start today. Although Bond hasn’t hit the winners circle yet in 2023, he had two nice priced runner-up finishers last weekend with todays rider, Huayas, aboard. Is expected to show significant improvement and can factor strongly in here today.
7- TRANSECT- Came with an outside run, before easily going clear through the stretch in nice looking debut win against Sp. Wts. going six and a half furlongs at Turfway in January. Returned 3 weeks later at Turway to wire a field of 1x allowance runners at that same distance, where he repelled a mid stretch challenge for the win at odds on. Showed versatility in those first two career starts on synthetic and now comes to NY for the one mile Gotham to run on dirt for the first time. Passes on the Battaglia Memorial at his winter home track of Turfway, which is being run tonight, to run in this spot and though Lobo does have another runner in that race, I like the confidence he shows in bringing this colt here for the Gotham. Shouldn’t have any issues handling the dirt, or an off track if that be the case and he can prove a serious danger.
11- MOTION TO STRIKE- Just missed wiring a field of 16k claimers in the slop when beaten a nose in latest on 1/5. Was claimed by Lynch out of that race and though he is now out of “jail” and can run for the claim price or lower, his new trainer confidently moves this horse up in this starter allowance. Have to think that if this horse wasn’t doing really well now that he would’ve been in the 6 furlong, 16k claimer in yesterday’s finale. Adds blinkers for this, like the outer draw and he should be a forward factor throughout in the nightcap.
RACE 9- TURF ONLY
2- AMERICAN ROCKETTE- Was an impressive winner in an off the turfer in first career start when coming off the pace to take a Sp. Wt. for fillies going 5 1/2 furlongs over an off track in July at Saratoga. Followed that up with a very respectable 4th place finish in the Grade 1 Spinaway, where she broke to the outer rail and nearly went over it, before putting in a mild run. Didn’t show much in her next two when a flat 4th in the Grade 1 Frizette in October, followed by an up the track finish in the Grade 2 Golden Rod in November at Churchill. Has been away since then and returns here in the Grade 3 Herecomesthebride to try the grass for the first time. This one mile trip on turf should suit her, she draws well and an expected wake up call in her turf debut makes her a serious threat.