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Air Support at Colonial, Teardrop at Churchill

Posted by Pete Mitchell on 6/21/2013 4:45:07 PM

Who: Thoroughbreds – Atigun, Swift Warrior, Air Support, More Than Beauty, Teardrop, Fiftyshadesofgold
What: Horse Racing Betting Tips – The Colonial Turf Cup, The Debutante
Where: Colonial Downs, Churchill Downs
When: Saturday, June 22nd

We’re spotlighting older turfers and juvenile fillies this Saturday. First, at Colonial Downs, a field of eight will head postward for the 9th Running of The Colonial Turf Cup at 1 3/16th miles on the lawn. Air Support, approaching a million dollars in earnings, figures to go off the favorite. At Churchill Downs, 11 2YO fillies, all coming off wins, will line up in the 113th Running of The Debutante. Teardrop, a Winchell homebred trained by Steve Asmussen with Rosie Napravnick named to ride, has the look of a budding star. Let’s take a closer look at these races below.

In the Colonial Turf Cup, #1-Atigun (3-1) breaks from the hedge with Julien Leparoux aboard. Leparoux returns after a one-race hiatus, and you’ll notice that he was aboard for this colt’s last two wins, both vs. allowance company…one on grass and the other on a sloppy main track at Churchill Downs. Last year, Atigun ran third in both the Breeders’ Cup Marathon and Belmont Stakes, so he’s got the necessary stamina and class to be competitive in this event. He’ll make his presence felt at some point. #5-Swift Warrior (7-2) gets Jose Espinoza back aboard, replacing Rosie Napravnick. Espinoza has won 3-of-5 starts aboard this runner, including a pair of Grade 3 events earlier this year. Like Atigun, Swift Warrior is versatile, so it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him lead or stalk. My pick here is #6-Air Support (5-2), trained by Shug McGaughey with Javier Castellano in the irons. Air Support loves the Colonial Park turf course, boasting a win in The Virginia Derby and a solid second (behind loose on the lead Turbo Compressor) in last year’s edition of this event. He’s ready to fire his best shot in the third start of his form cycle, and that bullet work (:46 2/5 H) on June 9th over the Belmont Park main track indicates he’s plenty sharp. The Janney homebred looks poised to become a millionaire on Saturday. I’ll bet on #6-Air Support to win at odds of 8-5 or better, and use him over #1-Atigun and #5-Swift Warrior in exactas.

The Debutante features three fillies that own a Beyer Speed Figure edge on their eight rivals. The first, #7-More Than Beauty (7-2), won her career debut at Churchill Downs on the front end by more than five lengths, earning a Beyer of 69 in the process. She has worked swiftly in the interim, and will take some catching. The second, #8-Teardrop (2-1), overcame a tardy beginning and a wide trip in her career bow (also at Churchill Downs) to draw off from her six rivals by nearly four lengths. She earned a Beyer of 67 for her efforts. Finally, #10-Fiftyshadesofgold (3-1) invades from Lone Star Park, where she won her career debut by 10 widening lengths to earn the field’s top Beyer of 77. The question is whether the Texas-bred lass can transfer that type of performance to Churchill Downs. I’ll bet on #8-Teardrop to win at odds of 7-5 or better. She’s very well-bred, proven locally, has shown she can overcome adversity, has great connections, and turned in a nifty 4-furlong breeze on June 16th, signaling her readiness.

Those are my horse racing betting tips for this weekend. Best of luck and happy gambling!

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