Best Horse Racing Bets for Friday, July 9, 2021

| July 9, 2021 5:12 am PDT

I really had to dig for values at my chosen three tracks for Friday—Belmont Park, Gulfstream Park, and Monmouth Park.

But find them I did—although I also found plenty of low-return M/L favorites. Such is life.

Let’s rejoice that I managed to locate three second-favored underdogs at Monmouth, along with a third-favored at Gulfstream and another second-favored entry at Belmont.

Before you dive into my picks, take a look at one of the top online racebooks for the full race cards and wagering options at all three tracks.

Good luck!

My Friday Picks for Belmont Park

We start on the turf course for race three, a 1-1/16 miles run for fillies and mares three years old and upward.

The morning line’s two top favorites are both Irish imports.

While both are statistically very similar, I like the 5/2 second-favored for the win: Made In Italy, with top jockey Junior Alvarado in the irons.

This four-year-old filly finished in the money six of her nine career starts, winning two, including her novice weight for age at Lingfield and a handicap in Newcastle. She finished third in the Premio Oaks d’Italia (Grade II) in Milan in between those two races.

Graham Motion trains Made In Italy for owners Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and The Elkstone Group, LLC (Stuart Grant).

We’re still on the turf for race six—a one-mile grass run for three-year-olds and upward. I’m betting my two dollars on the 9/5 morning line favorite, Dreams of Tomorrow, ridden by Jose Lezcano.

This four-year-old colt moneyed eight of his ten career starts, winning two.

Dreams of Tomorrow posted triple-digit speed figures for his last four races, one of which was the Henry S. Clark Stakes (Listed) at Pimlico, where he finished third.

Claude R. McGaughey III trains him for owner-breeder Phipps Stable. McGaughey put Lezcano in the irons for Dreams of Tomorrow’s most recent win, an allowance run at Belmont.

Race eight is a 1-1/16 mile turf race for fillies and mares three years old and upward. My bet is on another Irish import, this time, it’s the 5/2 morning-line favorite, Flighty Lady, with Manny Franco aboard.

This four-year-old filly finished in the money seven of her eight career starts, winning two. Four of those money finishes were in graded stakes races, including a third in the Qatar Prix Marcel Boussac-Criterium des Pouliches (Grade I) at Longchamp in 2019 and a second in the Prix Cleopatre (Grade III) at Lyon-Parilly Racecourse in 2020.

Named Eclipse Outstanding Trainer four years running, Chad C. Brown trains Flighty Lady for owner Peter M. Brant.

Friday’s Picks for Gulfstream Park

We start on the main track with race three, a one-mile dirt run for Florida-bred three-year-olds and upward. I like the third-favored (at 4/1) Seazan, with top jockey Emisael Jaramillo aboard.

This three-year-old gelding moneyed five of his nine career starts, winning one. He finished third in both the FTBOA Florida Sire In Reality Stakes (Black Type) and the FTBOA Florida Sire Affirmed Stakes (Black Type) last year at Gulfstream. In this eight-horse field, he’ll do.

Ralph E. Nicks trains Seazan for Stonehedge LLC. Nicks has put Jaramillo in the irons for three of Seazan’s money runs, including his graduation victory.

We’re on the turf course for race seven, a five-furlong grass run for fillies and mares three years old and upward. I’m buying a win ticket on 5/2 morning-line favorite, Awsum Roar, ridden by Edgard J. Zayas.

As much as I liked a couple of other horses in this field, Awsum Roar‘s record sealed the deal for me: 25 money finishes in 33 career starts, 11 of those wins.

Ranked among the top trainers in wins, earnings, or both yearly since 2013, Antonio Sano trains Awsum Roar for owners Imaginary Stables, Louis Mairone, and Carmen Pinto.

Sano has tapped Zayas to saddle Awsum Roar for all six of his 2021 runs.

We’re back on the main track for race eight—a six-furlong dirt run for three-year-olds. I’m backing the 2/1 morning-line favorite, Flamingo Hawk, piloted by Edgar J. Zayas.

This three-year-old gelding finished in the money four of his eight career starts, winning two. He’s statistically even with the second-favored Little Demon, but in a “What have you done for me lately” comparison test, Flamingo Hawk has the edge with more recent money finishes in 2021.

Saffie A. Joseph, Jr. trains Flamingo Hawk for Peachtree Stable.

Friday Picks for Monmouth Park

We’re starting on the turf with race one, a 1-1/16 miles grass run for fillies and mares three years old and upward. My bet is on the 4/1 second-favored Lake Parima, ridden by Hector Rafael Diaz, Jr.

This four-year-old filly moneyed 11 of her 16 career starts, winning three—which gives her a slight statistical edge over the morning-line favorite, Strong Gem.

Co-owner Juan Arriagada—who recently took Estilo Talentoso to victory in the Bed o’ Roses Stakes (Grade III) at Belmont—trains Lake Parima for himself and W. Mike Anderson.

We move to the main track for race two, a six-panel run for fillies and mares three years old and upward.

This might be the tightest race of the day, but I’m going to back the second-favored (at 3/1) entry, Charge Account, with Nik Juarez in the irons.

This four-year-old filly finished in the money 11 of her 20 career starts, winning seven. One of her money finishes was a third in the Cellars Shiraz Stakes (Black Type) at Gulfstream Park West back in November.

Kelly J. Breen trains Charge Account for owners Kenwood Racing LLC and Degaetano and Pastore, Inc.

Race six is a one-mile, and 70 yard main track run for fillies and mares three years old and upward. I’m calling this one for the 5/2 second-favored Topo Grigio, with newcomer Derbe Glass aboard.

This Saffie A. Joseph, Jr. owned-and-trained four-year-old filly moneyed three of her five career starts, winning two, which puts her in the statistical lead in this six-horse field.

It also helps that Glass brings her ten-pound apprentice allowance along for the ride.

Glass, by the way, had her first professional win as a jockey just last week (July 2nd) aboard I See the Stars at Monmouth Park.

J.W. Paine
J.W. Paine

J.W. Paine is one of the most experienced writers at He's written for television and the printed media, and is a published novelist (as Tom Elliott).

Paine loves writing about Las Vegas nearly as much he loves living here. An experienced gambler, he's especially familiar with thoroughbred horseracing, poker, blackjack, and slots.

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