Ellis Starr, a.k.a. “Ubercapper,” is the National Racing Analyst for Equibase. He publishes detailed analysis and selections for Keeneland and other tracks regularly which can be found at Equibase, Keeneland Select and other web sites. Ellis writes a widely distributed “Race of the Week” article which appears on the Equibase web site as well as America’s Best Racing.
Ellis will be posting his analysis daily for one race taken right from his complete selection and analysis report. Additionally, you can follow Ellis’ insights on twitter @ubercapper.
#12 Lightstream - Fair odds 2/1
#8 Curlin's Approval - Fair odds 5/2
#4 Lucy N Ethel - Fair odds 5/2
Lightstream has shown ability since her career debut in March when winning at this seven furlong trip with a stakes quality 116 Equibase Figure. Proving that to be no fluke, she won the Beaumont Stakes at Keeneland in the spring in only the second start of her career. Lightstream continued to remain undefeated when winning the Soaring Softly Stakes on turf in May, before a third place finish in the Mother Goose Stakes. In her most recent race, Lightstream rallied furiously from sixth to be beaten just three-quarters of a length in the Test Stakes at this distance, bringing her record at seven furlongs to three wins and one runner-up finish in four races. With a good outside post for the Raven Run and reunited with Julien Leparoux, who rode her to her first two wins including the Beaumont¸ Lightstream should be able to stalk likely pacesetter Lucy N Ethel from the start and go by in the late stages just as she did in the Beaumont six months ago.
Curlin's Approval is a rising start among three year old filly sprinters. She has won three of four career starts including her most recent effort. That effort came in the Added Elegance Stakes in Florida, in which she sat in second for the first half mile before gradually drawing off to win. The 105 figure she earned is on par with the figure Lighstream earned when second in the Test and so if this gal can repeat that effort, she has every right to win the Raven Run.
It is always difficult to rank unbeaten horses, particularly those with credentials in graded stakes, below others, and that is certainly the case with Lucy N Ethel, who is a perfect four-for-four in her career. After winning two races in Pennsylvania in November and December, the latter of the two with a 102 figure, Lucy N Ethel ventured to Florida to take the Old Hat Stakes in January before a freshening. Returning in September, she posted the upset at 22 to 1 in the Prioress Stakes with a career best 114 figure that could put the rest of these to shame if repeated. However, that may not be repeatable as the Prioress was run at six furlongs and Lucy N Ethel has never run this seven furlong distance. Still, she has the top early speed in the race and any horse that tries to go with her will have the wind taken out of their sales so that's unlikely to happen, leaving Lucy N Ethel all alone on the lead in the early stages. Considering that style has led to her four wins to date, she could win again.
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