The Grade 1 Forego Stakes is for three year olds and upward going 7 furlongs at Saratoga for a purse of $250,000. The race is named for the great 1970s star Forego who won 34 times from 59 starts for earnings of 1,938,957. The brilliant gelding won the Woodward Stakes four times in a row from 1974-77 and was Horse of the Year from 1974-76.
Sidney’s Candy (Candy Ride x Fair Exchange by Storm Cat) figures to be the favorite. The Todd Pletcher trainee won the Four Star Dave Handicap last out in his first race with the Kentucky Derby winning trainer. He is so versatile on dirt and turf and from several different distances that the connection have opted to turn him back to try for a Grade 1 win sprinting on the dirt.
The colt is perfect over the distance with his only try coming in the San Vicente Stakes. The dirt surface could be a question, but he figures to handle it just fine after a crushing win in the Sir Beaufort last year which was taken off the turf, but contested on a fast track.
I’m not wild about his chances. All of his wins have come while setting a slow pace. Essentially everything has gone his way. Not only that, but I also believe the competition he beat last out and in California was very soft. The WinStar connections will know what they have after this race, but I’m going to call for an upset.
My pick for the Forego Stakes is the other Pletcher entry, Aikenite (Yes Its True x Silverlado by Saint Ballado). I never used to like this horse, but he has proven himself with wins in the Commonwealth and Churchill Downs. He was a bit dull last out in the James Marvin, but did experience a somewhat poor trip. Velazquez chose to ride Sidney’s Candy over this one, but with JJ Castellano getting up there isn’t much to worry about in that area. The price should be square on a runner that will move from off the pace.
Others I considered are Hamazing Destiny, Jerseytown and Rule By Night. In the end I felt like Aikenite had less questions about his form than they do. I got away from Jackson Bend because in the past he has had a hard time putting together back to back strong efforts. If he reproduces his last race he could be tough to handle.
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