Best Horse Racing Bets for Saturday, June 19, 2021

| June 19, 2021 3:33 am PDT

I can’t deny it—I found a lot to like with the morning line picks for Saturday’s races. But even so, I managed to find a fourth-favored underdog among them. In fact, more than half of my picks for the day were second-favored or longer.

For the record, I chose my races from Belmont Park, Churchill Downs, and Lone Star Park.

Before you move on to my pick and predictions, don’t forget that you can find all the races for these three tracks at any of the best online racebooks.

Good luck!

Saturday’s Picks for Belmont Park

Beginning with race three, a seven-furlong turf run for fillies and mares three years old and upward, I’m putting my money on the second-favored Saratoga Affair at 3/1, with Irad Ortiz Jr. aboard.

This four-year-old filly finished in the money three of her four career starts, winning two—putting her in the statistical lead in this nine-horse field.

Top-ranked Chad C. Brown trains Saratoga Affair for owner Pick Five Racing, LLC. Brown has put Ortiz in the irons for Saratoga Affair’s most recent two races.

Race six is the distaff running of the New York Stallion Stakes, a seven-furlong turf run for New York-sired three-year-old fillies that features a purse of $150,000.

I have to agree with the morning line—my bet’s on the 5/2 favorite, Ava’s Grace, ridden by veteran jockey David Cohen.

This filly moneyed all four of her career starts, winning one (her initial maiden run) at Ellis Park. Her other finishes include a third in the Adirondack Stakes (Grade II) at Saratoga last August and a second in the Fantasy Stakes (Grade II) at Oaklawn this past April.

Ranked among the top 100 trainers for wins every year since 2010, Robertino Diodoro trains Ava’s Grace for owner Cypress Creek Equine.

David Cohen was aboard for the filly’s graduation run as well as her showing in the Adirondack Stakes.

Race nine is the male version of the New York Stallion Stakes—a seven-furlong turf run for New York-sired three-year-old colts offering a purse of $150,000 to be shared among the competitors.

I’m going with the morning lines 3/1`turf favorite: Step Dancer, with Dylan Davis in the irons.

This colt moneyed four of his five career starts, winning two—his graduation run at Saratoga last September and the Awad Stakes (Black Type) at Belmont Park in October. He also ran third in the Pilgrim Stakes (Grade II) that same month.

Barclay Tagg, who took Tiz the Law to a win at the 2020 Kentucky Derby, trains Step Dancer for owners Hayward R. Pressman, Diamond M Stable, and Donna R. Pressman.

Incidentally, jockey David Cohen, who was in the irons for both of Step Dancer’s earlier stakes runs as well as his maiden graduation, is having the winningest year of his career.

My Saturday Picks for Churchill Downs

We’re starting with race seven; a seven-furlong main track run for three-year-olds. I will stick with the morning line on this one and bet on the 5/2 favorite, Cazadero, piloted by Ricardo Santana, Jr.

This colt finished in the money four of his six career starts, winning two, including his initial maiden and the Bashford Manor Stakes (Grade III) a year ago.

Hall of famer Steve Asmussen trains Cazadero for Stonestreet Stables LLC. Asmussen has put Santana aboard for all six of Cazadero’s starts.

In race nine—a 1-1/8 mile turf race for fillies and mares three years old and upward—I’m going with the 7/2 turf favorite, Lake Lucerne, with veteran Julien Leparoux in the irons.

This four-year-old filly finished in the money for two of her seven career starts, winning both.

Yes, I know, but that record actually makes her a stand-out in this 15-horse field.

Incidentally, this Kentucky-born filly started her career over in the U.K., where she competed in several stakes races after breaking her maiden on the all-weather track at Chelmsford City.

Her speed figures since she returned to the States have been near or in the triple-digits.

Top-ranked Brendan P. Walsh trains Lake Lucerne for owner Godolphin, LLC. He’s had Leparoux aboard for both of her most recent runs.

Race ten is the Roxelana Overnight Stakes—a 6-1/2 furlong main track run for fillies and mares three-years-old and upward. While pretty much everyone is saying this is the odds-on favorite Sconsin’s race to lose, I am betting on the second-favored (at 7/5) Bell’s the One, ridden by Cory J. Lanerie.

This five-year-old mare has a comparably impressive record, but she’s finished first in more graded stakes races than Sconsin, the biggest reason I’m calling this one for her.

Bell’s the One moneyed 12 of her 17 career starts, winning seven of them, including the Derby City Distaff Stakes (Grade I), the Winning Colors Stakes (Grade III), the Raven Run Stakes (Grade II), the Allen “Black Cat” LaCombe Memorial Stakes (Black Type), and the Letellier Memorial Stakes (Black Type).

Neil L. Pessin trains Bell’s the One (who gave him his first Grade I stakes win) for Lothenbach Stables, Inc. (Bob Lothenbach). Pessin has had Corey Lanerie saddle Bell’s the One for her four most recent stakes wins.

Saturday Picks for Lone Star Park

Just for the novelty, we’ll start with race one—a one-mile turf run for Texas-bred three-year-olds and upward. My bet’s on the second-favored He’s a Suitor at 2/1.

This four-year-old gelding moneyed six of his ten career starts, winning three, giving him a solid statistical lead over the 8/5 morning line favorite.

Karl Broberg trains He’s a Suitor for Claiming Game Racing. Broberg has tapped jockey Reylu Gutierrez to saddle He’s a Suitor for this run.

Race five is another one-mile turf run for Texas-bred three-year-olds and upward, and I’m buying a win ticket on the second-favored (at 2/1) Papaws Boy, ridden by Leandro D. Goncalves.

This three-year-old gelding finished in the money five of his nine career starts, winning one.

This gives him the statistical edge over the morning lines favorite, enhanced by the wider range of competition Papaws Boy has encountered at tracks outside of Texas.

Karl Broberg trains Papaws Boy for End Zone Athletics, Inc.

We’re still on the turf course for race eight, a 7-1/2 furlong grass run for fillies and mares three years old and upward.

I’m calling this one for the fourth-favored (at 9/2) Good Fight, ridden by Lane J. Luzzi.

This four-year-old filly moneyed nine of her 14 career starts, winning five, giving herself a substantial statistical advantage over the morning lines higher-ranked entries. In comparison, the 5/2 favorite—Chikara—finished in the money ten of her 19 starts, winning four.

Regularly ranked among the top trainers in North America for both wins and earnings, Frank Lucarelli trains Good Fight for owners Chad Christensen and Josh McKee. Lucarelli has tapped Lane Luzzi for this ride. Luzzi is having one of his best years in the irons.

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.

More Posts by J.W. Contact J.W.



AUGUST Sportsbook of the Month
Welcome Bonus 50% up to $1,000
Read Review Visit Site
Back to top