This race is on an unconventional distance for American Racing and therefore one needs to pay close attention to the ability for marathon distance and to the class.
Only one horse is a proven winner at the distance, the horse who won that race last year.
The rest of the field, with the exception of a longshot, will make a first attempt at a marathon race and most have questionable class to pull it off.
An interesting Exacta bet can be put together if you are willing to trust the class and distance factor more than speed figure
Analysis and picks for the 4th race at the Saratoga on August 2 2018:
Number 1, HARD STUDY won this race last year and has been doing well in 2018 too with only one loss, in a Grade 2 stakes race. He was given a longer than usual rest for this race but maybe the trainer was simply priming him for a repeat. HARD STUDY has been doing better racing when running more frequently though. The workouts are not bad and of course the DRF speed figures are the best of the field too. It will be a much easier field than in his last race so HARD STUDY definitely has a prime chance. He is a deserving odds-on favorite in my opinion but I find it hard to bet for the win at these odds levels.
Number 2 CARLINO has been racing against today’s opponents frequently and was always bested… He also has never performed well on longer distances and today is a massive stretch compared to his winning distances. CARLINO has never won in stakes and on a marathon distance especially, the class is a massive factor. I think that CARLINO is outmatched and once again will lose to today’s foes.
Number 3, YOU’RE TO BLAME has a few places in stakes races but just as his neighbour, not a single win at this class level. The speed figures in his last few races are pretty good so that’s encouraging and of course he works for a top trainer. But YOU’RE TO BLAME will need to race for much longer than before and with questionable class, that’s difficult to pull off. The class allows a horse to dig deep to keep speed in the latter stages of the race and on this distance, I think that YOU’RE TO BLAME is likely to falter.
Number 4 ARCHANOVA , has not been racing very well recently but if you look at last year, he was doing OK in marathon races. This experience on long distances can certainly come in handy today at Saratoga. The last race was on turf and he has always done poorly on it so maybe we can discount it. Before that race, he won in slow times in an easy race class, probably just a refresher to start the 2018 season… ARCHANOVA has some good workouts leading to this race and the trainer is killing it at Saratoga so far this year. I like the odds for sure, but it might be tough for a win. The experience on the distance can help get a place however.
Number 5, BIG DOLLAR BILL is another one sent by the hot trainer Wilkes and he also shows some nice workouts. Contrary to his stable mate ARCHANOVA, BIG DOLLAR BILL will try the marathon distance for the first time. The race performance is better for him this year but he also has not won at this class level… His best jockey returns for this race so maybe that can help improve his chances but with the distance and class in question, it is hard to back BIG DOLLAR BILL today.
HARD STUDY will attempt to repeat the win of this very race and the signs are very good that he can pull it off. He is the only horse in the field with a win in a marathon distance and he also has won multiple times at this class level. Unless HARD STUDY has some kind of physical ailment or terrible racing luck, he should be able to win this one easily.
The longest morning line odds horse is the only other one with experience at the marathon distance. ARCHANOVA was racing ok on long distances last year and maybe he had a slow start of the 2018 season and will start to shine. It will be very hard to beat the favorite, but a place is within reach to spice up the exotic bets.
AUGUST 2 SARATOGA RACETRACK RACE 4 BETTING PICKS:
Exacta straight 1-4
(cheap) Exacta straight 4-1