Horse Racing Betting: Lady Eli Leads Trifecta Pick for Diana Stakes

Wednesday, July 19, 2017 1:03 PM UTC

Wednesday, Jul. 19, 2017 1:03 PM UTC

This weekend marks the start of the summer racing season at Saratoga Race Course in upstate New York, and to help get things started in a big way is the running of Saturday’s $500,000 Diana Stakes for some of the best fillies and mares in the country. This will be the 80th edition of this major graded event.

<p>The field for this year’s Diana Stakes continues to take shape with 10 entries listed as probable or possible a few days out from post time. The projected field is also deep in talent, but I have narrowed things down to my top three contenders for a winning trifecta ticket.</p><p> </p><h2><strong>Diana Stakes At Saratoga Race Course</strong></h2><p>The Diana Stakes is a Grade 1 event for fillies and mares 3-year-old and up. It will be contested on the turf track at Saratoga over a distance of 1 1/8 miles. The total prize purse for this year’s race is $500,000.</p><p>The top horse in the field for Saturday’s race should be <strong>Lady Eli</strong> with a Horse Racing Nation rank of No. 6 to go along with an 8.78 rating. Trained by Chad Brown, this 5-year-old Kentucky-bred mare would be my top choice, too, after coming off a big win in the Grade 1 Gamely Stakes at Santa Anita Park in late May. Going back to August 2014, she has finished first or second in 11 straight races, including a second-place run in last year’s Breeders’ Cup Filly &amp; Mare Turf.</p><p>This pedigree of Divine Park has been one of the top turf horses over the past three years, and the 1 1/8 miles distance seems to suit her running style the best.</p><p>Another probable entry for the Diana Stakes from Brown is <strong>Antonoe</strong>. She is a bit further down the list as an unranked 4-year-old Kentucky-bred filly with a HRN rating of 6.77, but I still like her chances to be right in the mix on Saturday. Following a victory this past April in a 1 1/16 miles allowance race at Keeneland, she went on to win the Grade 1 Just a Game Stakes at Belmont on June 10 at a distance of a mile.</p><p>After racing at a mile distance for most of her career overseas, Brown has Antonoe on a path to race in this year’s Breeders’ Cup Filly &amp; Mare Turf. Sired by First Defence, she has a progeny that goes all the way back to racing greats Unbridled and Seattle Slew.</p><p>Brown could be going for the trifecta sweep with <strong>Dacita</strong> as his third possible entry in the main event at Saratoga. This 6-year-old mare has finished in the money in six of her last nine events, including a victory in this race last year. She is coming off a disappointing six-place run her last time out at Belmont in the Grade 2 New York Stakes at a longer distance of 1 1/4 miles, but this followed a second-place finish in the Grade 3 Beaugay Stakes at that same track over 1 1/16 miles in her only two races this season.</p><p>Ranked 12<sup>th</sup> by HRN with a rating of 8.4, this pedigree of Scat Daddy has already had a very successful racing career at Saratoga, and I like her chances to keep things going with another strong run on the turf this Saturday.</p><h2 style="text-align:center"><a href="">Talk Horse Racing Betting In Our Forum</a></h2>
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