The Chicago-DC Lassie (Grade III)
2 Year Old Fillies | 1 Mile | Dirt | $150,000
Trainers at Del Mar have shipped their horses to Santa Anita, works have started at Belmont, The Arlington Million has come and gone with a shift in focus to Kentucky, but there are is still one more weekend of stakes races at Arlington Park. Some of the world’s top 2 year old fillies have stayed in Illinois in hopes of a performance that will propel them to the Breeders Bowl.
LIAM’S CAUSEWAY (8/1)
Let me first say that LIAM’S CAUSEWAY should not be penalized for handicappers for her Equinics race. In her short career, LIAM’S CAUSEWAY has made a name for herself going wire-to-wire, or at least pushing the pace, both things she was not able to do in that Equinics race where she drew the 20th post position and did her best to navigate an extremely crowded Vermont track, which is small as it is. Before that outlier of a race, the testbarn10 trainee was trending upwrads, being ITM 100% with only one race outside of the winner’s circle. Drawing the rail could be helpful for this horse, so I expect that past trend to continue this weekend. Folks may overlook this horse because of a step up in distance, coupled with that last time out, but Florida’s top jock, O. Haack, is flying into Chicago just to ride this horse for testbarn10, so if you can get this horse at even 4 or 5 to 1, it will provide a ton of value for a horse that looks bred to run routes.
STUNNING YANKEE (6/1)
STUNNING YANKEE spent the summer at Ellis Park where she ran in a pair of listed stakes, both of which she won. Her last trip out, in the 7.5 furlong Queen of Hearts, STUNNING YANKEE stalked the pace and closed down the stretch, winning by 1.75 lengths with a ton still in the tank. This horse commands a lot of respect for the Chicago-DC, but critics point out the lack of competition this summer- imagine a Sword Dancer Invitational, but with only Chad Brown’s trainees; that is essentially what yankeeawesome has done with STUNNING YANKEE in an effort to prep her for the upcoming 3 year old season. We’ll see what she can do against horses that don’t have a vested interest in her winning.
YANKEE TULIP (17/1)
YANKEE TULIP is entered by the same connections that enter STUNNING YANKEE; in fact, YANKEE TULIP was STUNNING YANKEE’s rabbit in the Queen of Hearts at Ellis Park on July 30th. L. Creek, who had the YANKEE TULIP mount in July, gets a leg up on her again this weekend, and knows how to push the pace to an appropriate level so that STUNNING YANKEE can take advantage down the stretch.
ROCK OUR CITY (13/1)
ROCK OUR CITY closed from almost 8 lengths back to take home her second win in a NW2L allowance going 7 furlongs in late July at Saratoga. In that race, the purse27 trainee and daughter of MISSION IMPAZIBLE was facing off against other New York-bred fillies, so her 13/1 odds is likely reflective of large pool competition here in Chicago for Arlington’s summer meet. I like the rest that this filly has been given, and this horse has closed at some pretty fast clips, so there’s the potential she could have enough in the tank to do it again this weekend.
YANKEE BARBIE (26/1)
Another yankeeawesome affiliated filly, but this one is the most inconsistent (two of her wins come in hot races against mostly CPU horses running speed figures in the 50s). The level of competition is learning and growing at a much faster clip than YANKEE BARBIE, and at some point she won’t be able to keep up with her stable mates in these stakes races.
BUCKOF THE NILE (6/1)
BUCKOF THE NILE (PIONEER OF THE NILE x MEDALIA D’ORO x GONE WEST) comes into the Chicago-DC as one of the most tested horses in this field, having raced against Grade II and III competition before this race. On top of that, BUCKOF THE NILE has been competitive in every one of her five races, never being more than a couple of lengths off the winner. She’ll see a familiar face in ZEN PULPIT, and will need to improve on her performance in the Dr. Shut-Yer-Lips-Lips Juvenile where she finished just off the board and behind ZEN PULPIT.
Crackpot quickly turned YORKHELL around after a NW2L allowance and entered her in The Schoolerville at Saratoga after only 17 days rest. It resulted in yet another second place win, and may have permanently given this daughter of CITY ZIP a case of seconditis. Each of her second place finishes have seen YORKHELL lose steam down the stretch, and with an extra furlong longer than she’s run before, I only imagine this will happen again. Her saving grace here may be an extended rest, something she’s responded well to in the past.
INDY GOLDDIGGER (13/1)
INDY GOLDDIGGER has progressed nicely this year, and her pedigree would indicate she may like routes, but her mother excelled at sprinting, so I’m mixed on how this horse is going to respond to the added distance this weekend. She’s coming off of a month and a half’s rest, so she’ll certainly be sharp, but will she be sharp enough to avoid another Butterfly Futurity where she finished 8th place in her only graded stakes competition?
PORT OF LIMASSOL (14/1)
Never say never, but this temp3 trainee has been inconsistent in her four races, despite notching three wins in that time. However, those three wins come in breeding restricted races, which would mean something if this horse were bred in California, Kentucky, New York, or even in a turf favoring country like England. Instead, PORT OF LIMASSOL was bred in Turkey, and has mainly faced off against Turkish-bred competition. Given some of the talent that is currently getting 13/1 odds, I can’t see this horse staying at 14/1, and I will likely stay away on Saturday.
PAYNT THE KITTEN (12/1)
PAYNT THE KITTEN has matured greatly since her debut in February at Santa Anita, and I think her owner is starting to figure out what distances are going to work, especially after a minor set back in The Schoolerville. That 4th place finish at Saratoga was part Saratoga dirt, part needing to go a little farther to be able to track down the leader, which this race will provide. I could see this horse being part of a lot of exotics this weekend, which will help payouts.
ZEN PULPIT (5/1)
Many critics have panned ZEN PULPIT’s Dr. Shut-Yer-Lips Juvenile performance as a major outlier, and I think this horse may regress a little in this weekend’s race. That said, I think this horse will respond well to another 1/16 of a mile, and will still be too much horse for the rest of the field. Try keying some exotics with ZEN PULPIT to create more value in your bets.
DEATH MENTALITY (8/1)
Another horse who may have been set back by a bad outing in an absurdly packed Equinics race, and this horse again draws an outside post. I don’t think this horse has what it takes to clear the field and set the pace to go wire to wire, and DEATH MENTALITY’s mount doesn’t have the experience to properly position this horse to really challenge running a different race than it is used to.
GOLDEN TRUMP (20/1)
Graywolf13 enters this filly in only her second race with no breeding restrictions, but the daughter of GOLDEN TICKET has stared down some pretty formidable New York-bred foes this year. Unfortunately, that competition may come at the horse’s expense; GOLDEN TRUMP is set to race in her seventh race in as many months, traveling all over the United States and one trip to South America. GOLDEN TRUMP is starting to plateau a bit, and a rest is definitely in store for this horse after Arlington closes down for the fall.
I LOVE DA SIXWARD (14/1)
With stints in Japan, Hong Kong, and Norway, I LOVE DA SIXWARD finally settles into a training rhythm here in the United States, but it does not seem to be helping her performance on the track. Her last two trips out have resulted in near dead last finishes by a combined 15 lengths. Her connections look to add a little distance to the mix, which could help, but this filly may in the middle of a long 2 year old stagnation.
1 – LIAM’S CAUSEWAY
1o – PAYNT THE KITTEN
11 – ZEN PULPIT
CapeCod’s All-Time Record: 4-3-4 (46%)
Cape Cod’s Record Last Week: 2-1-1 (33%)