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SPORT SECTIONS
 
Monday, July 31
Sunday picks




Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup
8th, Keeneland
Distance: 1 1/8 miles on the turf
Purse: $500,000
For 3-year-old fillies
Grade I
ESPN 3:30 ET

Gaviola is a win machine. A winner of six straight, she tops the prestigious QEII Challenge and should run her streak to seven straight. Loses Jerry Bailey, but Robbie Davis is a capable replacement. The best three year old filly on the grass in the country. Princess Ellen has been running against some terrific horses in England, including Crimplene and Man o'War runner-up Ela Athena. She makes her U.S. debut and gets Lasix for this start. The knock is she comes form a very cold Tom Skiffington barn. Theoretically closed like a bullet in the Del Mar Oaks and swithces here the the Cristophe Clement barn. A major threat.

Picks Summary: 1. Gaviola 2. Princess Ellen 3. Theoretically


Lane's End Breeders' Futurity
7th, Keeneland
Distance: 1 1/16th miles
Purse: $400,000
For: 2-year-olds
Grade II
ESPN 3:30 ET

Burning Roma was placed first through disqualification over two-year-old star City Zip in the Futurity at Belmont at 17-1. Had a terrible trip that day. Must prove the race wasn't a fluke. Arabian Light ran into some good ones at the Del Mar Futurity, but did not embarass himself with a good third-place finish. He has since worked an amazing six furlongs in 1:10 3/5. Distance is a question, but he appears best here. Mongoose, a rare two-year-old runner from the Bill Mott barn, beat a weak field in the Cradle Stakes at River Downs, but seems to be an improving horse who could be dangerous. He shows a bullet four-furlong workout since his last start. By Broad Brush, he should prosper at longer distances.

Picks Summary: 1. Burning Roma 2. Arabian Light 3. Mongoose


Oak Leaf Stakes
7th, Santa Anita
Distance: 1 mile
For: 2-year-old fillies
Purse: $200,000
Grade I

This race looks like a rematch between Cindy's Hero and Notable Career, who were one-two in the Del Mar Debutante. Cindy's Hero, the winner that day, shold make it two in a row. Of the two top contenders, she seems better suited to two turns. An improving filly who could use this as prep for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies. Notable Career is the obvious second pick though her distance capabilities are questionable. She must abvoid a speed duel with Sea Reel early; if so, she might get the job done. Pristine broke her maiden in her first start for Wayne Lukas, and must improve to challenge here, but the rest of the field seems very weak.

Picks Summary: 1. Cindy's Hero 2. Notable Career 3. Pristine


Clement L. Hirsch Turf Championship
4th, Santa Anita
Distance: 1 1/4 miles turf
For: 3-year-olds and up
Purse: $300,000
Grade I

Boatman returns here after a dismal effort in the Sword Dancer, where he caught a boggy turf course which he obviously didn't handle. If you put a line through that race, his form is excellent and includes a second-place finish behind Manndar in the Manhattan. Expect him to rebound to top form. Asidero is coming off a decent effort in the Arlington Million, where he led
for a mile. A quality horse, but must avoid a speed duel with Self Feeder and Alvo Certo. The McAnally barn remains cold. Mash One, a stablemate of Boatman, makes his first start since winning this race last year. No one knows for sure if he'll be ready, but he could be dangerous if trainer Bobby Frankel has him cranked up.

Picks Summary: 1. Boatman 2. Asidero 3. Mash One


Kelso Handicap
9th, Belmont
Distance: 1 mile on the turf
Purse: $250,000
For: 3-year-olds and up
Grade II

Affirmed Success has successfully made the transition from dirt sprinter to turf miler. Was a decent third in the Grade I Atto Mile in his last, draws a favorable post and has to worry only about Hap in this race. Hap may be the favorite here based on two straight stakes wins at Saratoga. We'll go against him because he had a perfect trip in the Fourstardave and just barely held
on. Mott-Bailey-Paulson team always tough in New York turf races. Delay Of Game has been erratic this year but can challenge with his best effort. Gets in light at 114 pounds and has the services of red-hot Edgar Prado.

Picks Summary: 1. Affirmed Success 2.Hap 3.Delay Of Game



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