Ricky's Favorite Plays at Monmouth Park on Haskell Day
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Ricky's Favorite Plays at Monmouth Park on Haskell Day

Ricky Fuller

On Saturday 7/18, all eyes will focus on a park usually ignored except for a day like today.  Monmouth Park, located in Oceanport New Jersey, will take center stage with their loaded card for Haskell Stakes day.  The Haskell usually is an invitational race for a "win and you're in" Breeders Cup race.  This year, on top of that honor, horses will acquire points to run in the late edition of the Kentucky Derby in September.  750 fans/owners/trainers will be allowed to be in attendance too!  I'm gonna run through a few of the stakes races at Monmouth Park and give my favorite bet!

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Race 9: Winstar Matchmaker (G3) 4:06 pm EST

This race sets up- to me- as a lack of speed on the front end.  Xenobia (#8) is the only front running type but is listed to run in a race at Saratoga.  At the time of this writing, I'm not sure where the horse is located to get a better idea of where the horse will run.  If this horse is not in this race, at 8-1 odds, LOCK IN VALEDICTORIAN (#1).  Valedictorian knows what it takes to win and would be in a perfect setup at longer odds to get this win.  She's 12 of 34 lifetime and 4 of 5 at Monmouth Park.  My only gripe is that she is getting a jockey switch, but that jockey just happens to be hall of farmer Mike Smith. I'll take my chances with these odds.

Race 10: Monmouth Cup (G3) 4:40 pm EST

Extremely tough race on paper that should set up for a good one for horse fans.  Lot's of stars running in this race on dirt.  CAN WE GET A MIKE SMITH DOUBLE? Early on, I'm liking Bal Harbor (#9).  I think the race sets up nicely for a stalker to do some damage. Joevia (#7) and Bodexpress (#10) should be in a speed dual up-front.  Sacco trains both Joevia and Bal Harbor, so it would only make sense to send Joevia to the front to eliminate the threat of Bodexpress wiring this field.

 Race 11: United Nations Stakes (G1) 5:10 pm EST

I hate to do it to you guys, but Arklow (#1) is just so good that we may end up eating chalk.  If that's the case, I'm gonna need a "HELL YEAH" on a MIKE SMITH P3.  I promise I'm not a Mike Smith superfan.  He just happens to get a lot of good mounts because he's Mike Smith.  There is going to be a lack of speed in this race, and normally I hate betting closers in a race without speed.  This time, I know what Arklow brings to the table and we're gonna ride with the chalk.  However, I do have my eye on a certain longer shot horse that will be in our discord that can disrupt the trifecta...

Race 12: Haskell Stakes (G1)  5:46 pm EST

The main event!  My top-ranked 3 year old from back in February, Authentic (#2), will be looking for redemption after a 2nd place effort last out.  Authentic still currently sits in 3rd place on the Derby points board.  YOU'LL NEVER GUESS WHO IS ON THE MOUNT.  Okay, maybe you will.. MIKE SMITH FOR A P4?!  Authentic having an inside post position, with Mike Smith aboard.. should be fun to watch.  Dr Post (#1) has been ever-improving and would be a horse to watch in this race.  I also have one other horse that I like to be in the mix late.

Race 14: Molly Pitcher (G3) 6:51 pm EST

We skipped race 13, but it doesn't mean its not important, but for sake of paying subs and keeping things interesting - Molly Pitcher Stakes is race 14.  The obvious choice, She's A Julie (#1), will be tough to take down, especially after her last outing.  HOWEVER, I do have another horse at longer odds that I can almost guarantee will hit the board.  This horse has the skillset needed to take down the favorites and you will not want to leave her off your ticket.  The first 5 people to follow me on twitter and DM me will get this horse for free.  If you're a horse sub, you'll get this play in discord!  Reading my articles and doing simple tasks will get perks like this!

Photo by Sarah Andrew

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