Fourstardave Handicap Preview

Time Test Looks Tough in Fourstardave while World Approval Tries to Snap Trainers Struggles at the Spa

This is the 33rd running of The FourStarDave Handicap (G1) for 3-year-olds and up over the inner turf course at Saratoga. The $500,000 Grade I race was shorted to 1 mile in 2012, and this year’s edition has a field of 7 lined up including a filly, Sassy Little Lila (6-1), battling the boys.

Disco Partner (2-1) and World Approval (9-2) will both have new jockeys in the irons. That’s because their regular riders are in Chicago for the Arlington Million. We feel this will really affect Disco Partner, as he’s won 4-of-5 coming into Saturday’s race as the 2nd betting choice. But Disco Partner has to be ridden to perfection as he has one big kick coming from the rear. If the new jockey Tyler Gaffalione doesn’t time his move right on Disco Partner it will be very costly down the lane. If that were to come at the expense of World Approval, who will also be racing on or near the lead, then trainer Mark Casse would pick up just his 2nd win of the meet through 40 starts heading into the weekend.

There appears to be little speed lined up and that will really help Sassy Little Lila. She was scratched last weekend in another stakes race at Saratoga by her trainer Brad Cox for this spot and she’s also facing males today as well.  Sassy Little Lila will take them as far as she can on the front end, and while she may hang on for a share at the wire, a win would be a big surprise.

The morning line favorite Time Test (8/5) looks tough in this spot for trainer Chad Brown despite trying a mile for the first time in the U.S. Time Test is coming into this race after finishing 2nd in back to back races at Belmont Park as the favorite. Many handicappers will look to fade him as they consider him a money burner off those last two races. We also think Disco Partner will take money at the windows, but Time Test has lots of talent and class and can rate much closer to the pace will little speed pushing on the front end. We suggest making a win wager on Time Test at 8/5 odds, along with an exacta key over Sassy Little Lila, Disco Partner, and Ballagh Rocks (10-1).

The FourStarDave Handicap (G1) is race 10 at Saratoga on Saturday, Aug. 12 with an estimated post time of 6:28 ET as Race No. 10 on the Inner Turf.

Kenny Schmitt contributed to this article. Follow him on Twitter @FBWinners.

Mondialiste Takes Arlington Million

Mondialiste Ships in for Huge Arlington Million Win and Entry to Breeders’ Cup Turf

British-trained Mondialiste returned to the United States and scored a major victory Saturday in the Arlington Million outside Chicago. The 6-year old Mondialist, who comes from the family of Preakness winner and U.S. champion Timber Country, earned an automatic entry into the $4 million Breeders’ Cup Turf November 5 at Santa Anita. Last year Mondialiste finished a hard-charging second to Tepin in the Breeders’ Cup Mile.

Arlington Million trophyWearing pink and dark blue silks, jockey Danny Tudhope rated Mondialiste mid-pack up the backstretch then went four wide on the far turn before pushing past the leaders in the final sixteenth to win the 1 ¼ mile Million in 2:01.87.  The classy competitor recently finished second at York before his connections and trainer David O’Meara decided to ship him in for a shot in the Million.

“We stepped him up to a mile-and-a-quarter at York and he ran a really good race, and once we saw that he handled the trip okay, we had this race in the back of our mind,” O’Meara said. “We thought we’d bring him over because he performed so well this side of the water last year.”

The moved paid off big, as Mondaliste (IRE) collected the $570,000 winner’s share and paid $10.80, $6.40 and $4.80 after going off at 4.40-1. He won his fifth race in 21 starts and increased his earnings to $1,676,374.

“He seems to perform exceptionally here. He likes these turning tracks, he likes how these American races are run and it would make sense to bring him back this direction again,” Tudhope said.

Kasaqui (ARG) finished second and paid $13.20 and $9.40. He lacked room at the quarter pole then shifted paths turning for the home stretch and rallied gamely before coming up short by a neck. Deauville (IRE) took the lead by a head in the stretch but couldn’t hold on finishing another neck behind for third to pay $7.00. Race favorite World Approval, with jockey of the day Florent Geroux aboard, stalked the pace running second to the mile marker before giving way and finishing seventh in a field of 11. Tryster, the 4-1 second choice finished eighth.

Just five lengths separated all 11 horses as many made a cavalry charge down the stretch before Mondaliste pulled ahead for the Arlington Million victory.

Horses Prep for Arlington Million

Horses Arrive and Workout in Preparation for Arlington Million

The Arlington International Festival of Racing is Saturday, August 13, and it’s the biggest day of horse racing in Illinois. Six stakes races highlight the card with the 34th running of the Arlington Million headlining the big day of racing.

More horses are arriving and getting their track workouts in, and the International horses continue to clear quarantine.

Here are some notes and horse’s workouts in recent days as they prepare to run on the turf in the Arlington Million.

World Approval breezed four furlongs in 49.33 over the turf training course at Saratoga August 5. He won the Grade I United Nations at Monmouth July 3, and is one of the Arlington Million favorites at 9/2.

Tryster (IRE) breezed an easy four furlongs in 53.60 over the Arlington polytrack. The Irish-bred has won 9 of 14 races including a pair of races over the Meydan racecourse earlier this year. He’s the Arlington Million favorite at 7/2.

Take the Stand (ARG) breezed five furlongs in 101.19 in turf training at Saratoga August 4. He’s unraced since wiring the field in winning the Muniz (GII) at Fair Grounds on March 26, beating World Approval by 1 ¼ lengths. He attempts Grade I company for the first time in the Arlington Million and is 20-1.

Wake Forest (GER) got sweaty during his five furlong gallop at Saratoga August 7 going 101.19 over the turf training course. The 6-1 choice is trained by Chad Brown and Wake Forest finished sixth in the Arlington Million last year.

The Pizza Man is back to defend his Arlington Million win from last year. He’s 0-for-3 this year but has won ten times in 14 races at the Arlington track. He breezed four furlongs in 49.40 over the Arlington all-weather track August 6 and is 10-1 to repeat as winner.

Other Arlington Million horses will get a work in the next few days while many other horses in the Festival stakes races are tuning up for the big betting races this weekend.