Best Horse Racing Bets for Wednesday, July 28, 2021

| July 28, 2021 6:08 am PDT

Underdogs, sleepers, second chances—we’ve got it all with my Wednesday picks. I took a look at three race at each of these tracks: Mountaineer Racetrack, Parx Racing, and Saratoga Racecourse.

I actually found sleepers at each of the three tracks, but you’ll have to read on for the specifics.

Good luck!

Wednesday’s Picks for Mountaineer Racetrack

We begin with race two, a one mile and 70 yards turf course run for three-year-olds and upward. I agree with the morning line here, so my two dollars buys me a win ticket on 3/1 favorite, Pioneer Dancer, with Guillermo Rodriguez in the irons.

This five-year-old gelding moneyed 11 of his 25 career starts, winning six—which, believe it or not, puts him firmly at the top of the list in this 12-horse field.

Jay P. Bernardini, who has been ranked in the top 100 in his profession for the past five years, trains Pioneer Dancer for owner Gus Pesaturo.

Race four puts us back on the main track for a six-furlong dirt run for West Virginia-bred three-year-olds and upward. I’m betting on the 6/1 underdog, Trapshot Reward, ridden by veteran jockey Luis Raul Rivera.

The morning line’s top three choices are less than impressive—but so was Trapshot Reward—at least he was last year, finishing in eighth place for his first three maiden attempts in October and November 2020. His connections didn’t race him again until Independence Day 2021, where he achieved his graduation victory. He’s been looking pretty fit lately.

Crystal Richison trains Trapshot Reward for owner Jennifer Schunk.

We’re still on the main track for race seven, a six-panel sprint for three-year-olds and upward. I’m buying a win ticket on the third-favored (at 7/2) Marden, with jockey Gabriel Lagunes aboard.

This five-year-old gelding’s shows a significant edge over the rest of this six-horse field: Eight money finishes in 16 career starts, six of those wins, including his two most recent.

Sherry L. Kirk trains Marden for owner Adonai Racing Stable.

My Wednesday Picks for Parx Racing

Let’s start on the turf course for race seven, a one-mile grass run for fillies and mares three years old and upward. If this race stays on the turf, my money is on the 8/1 sleeper, Anginetti, ridden by veteran jockey Angel Castillo.

This three-year-old filly moneyed five of her ten career starts, winning two. Alfredo Velazquez trains Anginetti for Wire To Wire Stables.

If, on the other hand, Frankie Pennington enters the starting gate aboard the also-eligible/MTO Confirmed Genius—then of course bet all two of your dollars on Confirmed Genius (the morning-line’s dirt favorite at 9/5).

This three-year-old filly finished in the money for five of her nine career starts, winning two. Jamie Ness trains Confirmed Genius for owners Morris E. Kernan, Jr., Yo Berbs Racing, and Jagger Inc.

We move to the main track for race eight, a six-furlong sprint for three-year-olds and upward. I like the 6/5 morning-line favorite, Prince of Rain, piloted by Inoel Beato.

This four-year-old gelding finished in the money for all six of his career starts, winning two. Yeah, he’ll do.

Breeder Michael Zalalas trains Prince of Rain for Z and Z Stables—the racing stable co-owned by Michael and his brother, Angelo.

And then it’s back to the turf course for race nine, a mile-and-70-yards route for fillies and mares three years old and upward.

If Ruben Silvera rides the 5/1 also-eligible Skye Snow into the starting gate, then bet Skye Snow to win.

This  four-year-old filly moneyed eight of her 12 career starts, winning four. Carlos A. David trains Skye Snow for owner Moshe Mark.

If that doesn’t happen, then go ahead and put your money down on the 7/2 morning-line turf favorite, Peyton Elizabeth, with Jeremy Laprida in the irons.

This three-year-old filly had six money finishes in her eight career starts, with one win. Not great, but it still gives her an edge if the race stays on the turf and the MTO Skye Snow remains in his stall.

Robert E. Reid, Jr. trains Peyton Elizabeth for owners Cash is King LLC, D. J. Stable LLC, and LC Racing LLC.

Wednesday Picks for Saratoga Racecourse

Saratoga brings us three stakes races among its Wednesday races, so I’m picking winners in each.

Starting with a steeplechase in race one, we’ve got the Jonathan Kiser Novice Stakes, a $75,000 purse, 2-1/16 miles hurdle for four-year-olds and upward.

It’s not hard to back the morning-line’s 6/5 favorite, The Mean Queen, ridden by Thomas Garner. After all, I touted her last week—for this exact same steeplechase. Let’s hope the weather stays clear this time and we get to see the inescapable truth of my original tout.

Just in case you missed it, I pointed out last week that The Mean Queen, a five-year-old Irish import, had finished in the money for all five of her career starts, and had won three of them. One of those wins was the Margaret Currey Henley Hurdle Stakes at Percy Warner Park in June.

I also noted that Thomas Garner had been in the irons for The Mean Queen’s two most recent races—both of which were wins.

Race three is the New York Stallion Series Stakes, a $150,000 purse, one-mile grass run for New York-sired three-year-olds. My money is on the second-favored (at 2/1) Step Dancer, ridden by Dylan Davis.

This colt moneyed five of his six career starts, winning two, including his maiden at Saratoga last September and shortly thereafter, the Awad Stakes (Black Type) at Belmont. Between those two, he ran a solid third in the Grade Two Pilgrim Stakes at Belmont.

Barclay Tagg, who’s taken a fistful of horses to the various Triple Crown races and is regularly ranked among the top 100 earners in his profession, trains Step Dancer for owners Hayward R. Pressman, Diamond M Stable, and Donna R. Pressman.

For race nine—the Honorable Miss Handicap (Grade II), a $200,000 purse, six-furlong main track run for fillies and mares three years old and upward—I’m betting my two dollars on one of the 6/1 underdogs (there are three at 6/1 in this race) Honey I’m Good, with veteran jockey Ricardo Santana, Jr. aboard.

This five-year-old mare finished in the money 11 of her 13 career starts, winning six, her most recent was the Regret Stakes (Black Type) at Monmouth Park earlier this month.

Hall of famer Steven M. Asmussen trains Honey I’m Good for Almost Heaven Stables.

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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