- Just Zip It is entered in the 6th at Belmont on Wednesday. For new readers, she's a NY-bred City Zip filly, trained by Bill Turner, in which I own a small stake via Castle Village Farm. This will be her second try in the state-bred NW2X level. Purses are up for the Belmont meeting, and this race goes for a cool $51,000, up from $48,000 last time. She ran third in her last after taking a couple of solid bumps coming out of the gate; and she also threw a shoe at some point on the backstretch.
But Just Zip It came out of the race OK, and had her usual lazy breeze on Saturday. She saves her running for the afternoon, and has never been out of the money in six starts. So I'm expecting that she'll run well again cutting back to six furlongs. Main problem appears to be this Levine horse, Precious Too, who has crushed weaker, opening significant leads on the backstretch and crusing home, in her two starts since being claimed by this barn. The chart comment for her last reads: Sent inside, long gone. Not bad for a filly who hadn't won in 17 starts going back to Sept, 2006 before being claimed.
Precious Too has giant Moss Pace numbers in her last race, and if that's any indication, she could be off to the races. The only other horse who would appear to have a chance to keep pace early is Aegean Breeze, a nemesis who has defeated Just Zip It twice. However, she quit badly chasing a slower pace in her last. If nobody can run with Precious Too, Just Zip It may be running for second money, which is actually pretty substantial - $10,200 - given these purses.
Pleasant surprise to see Grasshopper in town for the G3 Westchester Handicap at one mile. Seems a bit of a strange spot at first glance for a colt who blossomed in two turn races last year, most memorably his second to Street Sense in the Travers. But trainer Neil Howard has his eyes on the G1 Met Mile.
“We thought we have seen that side of him (to handle the mile). He has a nice stalking style and a good punch at the end. We thought, why not do this now over the track the Met Mile is run.Divine Park, last year's Withers winner is in the field, as is the highly disappointing Sightseeing.
Hunch bet for April 29:
Daddy'slittleangel 1st at Delaware