Happy Diana Day! 

The first Saratoga Saturday card is headlined by the Grade I Diana Stakes and the Grade III Sanford for two year olds.  Chad Brown trains four of the five Diana starters today – but it is a competitive field and not a slam dunk for In Italian. Remarkably, Chad has won six of the past seven renewals of the Diana. 

Trivia Question: In Italian looks to repeat today in the Diana Stakes – who was the last horse to win two renditions of the Diana? Answer below. 

Race 4 – The Diana Stakes – Grade I  

One Mile and One Furlong on the Mellon Turf Course  

for Fillies and Mares Four Years Old and Upward 

  1. Fev Rover: Has performed well for Mark Casse at Woodbine since shipping over from England last summer. Versatile horse won the Grade II Nassau Stakes his first race of the year coming from off the pace to cruise by the field once a seam opened (94 Beyer). Second off the long layoff. Will need to make one run late after saving ground. Lean against.
  2. In Italian:  Her win in the Diana last year started a run where she won four of five starts (all Grade Is) and posted five straight triple digit Beyers.  Last out she easily handled the field in the Just a Game (103 Beyer).  Likes to get to the front and take them all the way. But nine furlongs is probably at her outer limit and if she get pressed by Marketsegmentation it could get interesting. Most likely winner.
  3. Marketsegmentation: This American Pharoah filly has been excellent for Chad Brown winning her last three races highlighted by her first Grade I win in the New York Stakes last out at Belmont (96 Beyer). Still on the improve at age four, gets the turnback today. Can stalk In Italian from the outside and pounce in the last eighth. Will need a move forward. The Pick.
  4. Fluffy Socks: Won the Distaff Turf Mile at Churchill on Derby day by splitting horses at the eighth pole to take over (98 Beyer).  That was her first win in nine starts – she ran well in many of those other races but just couldn’t finish off races or was beaten by stronger stablemates. Beyers aren’t too far off and her best race was over this surface last year in the Ballston Spa. Rosario picks up the mount. Underneath player.
  5. Whitebeam: Juddmonte homebred won the Grade III Gallorette Stakes at Old Hilltop on Preakness Day at 4/5 for Chad with a good turn of foot in the last furlong. Two back in her first race in North America she couldn’t catch Evvie Jets at Aqueduct in the Plenty of Grace Stakes (92 Beyer). Makes the jump to Grade I company. Does she want more ground? Passing. 

Picks 3-2-4 

Trivia Answer: Eight horses have won multiple Diana’s – the most recent was Sistercharlie who won in 2018 and 2019 for Chad Brown. 


Race 10 – The Sanford Stakes – Grade III 

Six Furlongs on the Dirt for Two Year Olds 

This is the first of three graded stakes at the meet for two year old colts. This race will set the stage for the Grade II Saratoga Special and Grade I Hopeful later in the meet.    

  1. Call the Calvary: Won at first asking going five furlongs at Belmont. Impressive debut performance to shoot the rail and win comfortably (59 Beyer). Ran well inside horses and draws the one hole again. Has been working on the Oklahoma training track. Hits the board.
  2. Jive: Won at first asking at Gulfstream two months ago – and transfers to Phil Serpe from Juan Alvarado’s barn. Is the first winner by sire St. Patrick’s Day – who was a turf sprinter in Europe. Looking elsewhere.
  3. Dickens: Won on debut for Juan Alvarado at Gulfstream going four and half in a Florida bred race – looked strong in the stretch. Barn is solid with two year olds but only has one win form fourteen starters on the NYRA circuit. Takes on open company. Water is too deep.
  4. Yo Yo Candy: Raced greenly behind Gold Sweep in the Tremont – finishing third. Blinkers go ON. Maybe the blinkers will help but he couldn’t sort out his leads in the Tremont and was all over the track. Had similar issues when he won a maiden race at Parx. Looks like he could fast but needs to be more professional in his third start to best a group like this. Possible small slice.
  5. Factor U and Me In: Won a quarter horse style two furlong race at Parx where they start at the top of the stretch. Not sure what to take from that other than he got away from the gate well. Blinkers go ON. Should be sent from the drop. Early speed.
  6. Ramming Speed: Won at Presque Isle on the poly going four and a half (56 Beyer). Posted the same Beyer in his first effort as well. Not convinced.
  7. Triple Trea: Broke his maiden at first asking at Woodbine on the synthetic – ran well late that day to get up late (63 Beyer). Has solid dirt works including a bullet last time on the Woodbine training track. Upset candidate.
  8. His Rights: Got up late at Parx to win his debut (45 Beyer) after being seven wide. Strong finish after a solid move at the top of the stretch.  Big class jump today. Possible in exotics.
  9. Gold Sweep: Broke his maiden in the Tremont Stakes at Belmont (91 Beyer) going five and a half. He sat off the leader and when asked blew past them to draw off by nine lengths.  Could be anything for Asmussen. Post is a bit tough – in the last two years the win rates dirt sprinting from post nine at the Spa were 5% and 7%. He’s appears to be much the best here. The Pick. 
  10. Market Street: $200,000 daughter of arrogate won at Ellis Park while skipping over a sloppy surface for D. Wayne Lukas going five furlongs (59 Beyer). Lukas has won this race a record six times (shares this record with Pletcher) – but not since 2004. Tough outside draw.

Picks 9-1-7-8