Stay Lucky Picks: Keeneland Stakes Highlight Challenging Weekend


Welcome to the 2018 Stay Lucky season! You will notice new prizes and smoother performance for the new season, along with presenting sponsor Equestricon!

If you’re reading this, chances are you’ve downloaded the app and are ready to start picking winners. If you have not yet downloaded Stay Lucky, what are you waiting for?

Get the iOS version of the app here.

The Android version of the app on Google Play can be downloaded here.

Stay Lucky offers participants the opportunity to win great prizes by stringing together winners in Thoroughbred races. Unbroken streaks of five, seven, nine, 14, 17 and 20 reward the players with a prize or choice of prizes. Terms and conditions apply.

The object is simple: pick winners from North American graded stakes races that draw at least six entrants. Races will be scored in real time but streaks will be updated only once daily to make sure they are scored in the correct order.

Pick as many races each weekend as you like, but be sure to play at least one race every weekend or your streak will be reset.

This weekend is highlighted by four stakes races at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Ky.

Thursday, Oct. 18

Sycamore Stakes (4:57 p.m. ET): The Sycamore drew three of the top five finishers from the Grade 3 Kentucky Turf Cup Stakes on Sept. 8 at Kentucky Downs, including winner Arklow (#5) and runner-up Bigger Picture (#4). All three have run well on the grass at Keeneland. I believe Arklow is the best horse, but for Stay Lucky purposes I wouldn’t risk a big streak on him. I’d wait for an easier spot.

Friday, Oct. 19

Pin Oak Valley View Stakes (5:30 p.m. ET): Daddy Is a Legend (#3) was scratched from the Grade 1 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Stakes on Oct. 14 in favor of this easier spot. I thought she had a chance in QE II Cup – she would have been facing overwhelming favorite Rushing Fall again – so I really like her in this spot. She has won at Keeneland before and seems to really like the turf course, especially if the rain stays away and she gets the firm ground that all three of her wins have come on.

Saturday, Oct. 20

Lexus Raven Run Stakes (5:30 p.m. ET): This is a terrific betting race with a full field of 14 3-year-old fillies, plus a pair of also-eligible entrants, but I’ll steer far clear of the Raven Run for Stay Lucky purposes. I think there are as many as 10 win contenders, but with a ton of speed in the race I’m going to take a shot on closer Kelly’s Humor (#6) with what could be an ideal setup.

Sunday, Oct. 21

Grey Stakes (4:36 p.m. ET): There are three horses making the switch from turf to synthetic for this race, including Grade 1-placed Nashtrick (#7), as well as another trio that won their previous race on a synthetic track coming off of a grass race. I don’t see a clear standout here, but Nashtrick is an Augustin Stable homebred with some nice horses in his pedigree and Grade 1 experience. He’s the play.

Rood & Riddle Dowager Stakes (4:57 p.m. ET): Another evenly matched field in what might be one of the tougher weekends of the year. I landed on Vexatious (#10) but with the outside post and only one win in 10 starts in 2017-’18, it’s a tepid play at best.

Athenia Stakes (5:18 p.m. ET): This is a terrific betting race and, as usual for grass races for fillies and mares, Eclipse Award-winning trainer Chad Brown has a powerful hand with three legit win candidates. I went in a different direction and landed on On Leave (#9) for Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey coming off a nice win in a stakes race at Kentucky Downs. On Leave won her only try on this inner turf course at Belmont and has two wins and two seconds in five races at this distance.

Mike’s Top Stay Lucky Play

(37 winners from 93 top plays in 2018)

1. Daddy Is a Legend (Pin Oak Valley View Stakes)

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