Belle's Best Bets: Strong Stakes Favorites

Eclipse Sportswire

America’s Best Racing, Belle Premium American Vodka, and handicapper (and avid gambler) Monique Vág team up to provide horseplayers with their best bets of the weekend.

Vág will identify her top picks as well as at least one longshot play of the weekend, a nice opportunity to swing for the fences on a win bet or to take a shot with a show bet. She also will occasionally look for strong exacta plays for the weekend or try to spot a nice opportunity for other wagers.

Belle Premium American Vodka is the official vodka of America’s Best Racing. The American-made, American-owned vodka is distilled in Virginia, the birthplace of Thoroughbred breeding and racing in North America. The company’s mascot, Belle ‘n Tonic, broke her maiden at Laurel Park in Maryland last April. 

This Weekend’s Bets

Saturday, July 28

Best Bet

Woodbine, Race 5, King Corrie Stakes, 3:05 p.m. ET

#1 Hemp Hemp Hurray: With the exception of his start at Ascot last time out where he definitely didn’t take well to the travel or want to run that day, he’s been fairly consistent.  With many runners in here making their debut sprinting or on the all-weather, I like to back a runner that is proven on both surface and distance. The drop in class should be appreciated and I hope to see this runner positioned on or just off the lead.

Longshot Play

Woodbine, Race 8, Toronto Cup Stakes, 4:47 p.m. ET

#4 Archaggelos: Since many of these runners have starts on all three different surfaces, I like to look at what they have done specifically racing over the turf. The drop in class today for this runner should significantly help his chances and I think his price will be higher than the 4-1 morning line. He's worthy of a play if somewhere in the 5-1 or up range at post time.

Best Bet

Saratoga, Race 10, Jim Dandy Stakes, 6:18 p.m. ET

#5 Vino Rosso: This colt’s best effort was the Wood Memorial where he opened up late in deep stretch while making a successful bid from off the pace. I think the time off will help with the maturation and I think he enters sharp off a decent try in the Belmont Stakes. The return to face off against an easier field and a little shorter distance should help his chances.

Best Bet

Del Mar, Race 3, Bing Crosby Stakes, 9 p.m. ET

#3 Roy H: When on his game he made very light work of a lot of these top runners in the Santa Anita Sprint Championship and the TwinSpires Breeders’ Cup Sprint. I would have loved to have seen a couple more starts in 2018 and not be racing today off a four-month layoff, however he’s proven sharp after some time off and looms as the clear standout as he was spectacular last year.

Sports Pick of the Weekend

Saturday July 27

Canadian Football League: Ottawa Redblacks at Hamilton Tiger-Cats

PICK: Ottawa +6 (-110): Even dating back to last season the Ottawa Redblacks have been a good road team. They have won six of their last eight outright. They have put up points through a balanced offensive attack incorporating a run game which can definitely help move the chains. The Redblacks are currently in better form, should be able to put points up on the board, and have looked like a much improved team this year. Take the points on an underdog that could easily win outright.

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