Fillies aged two will be in action at Aqueduct on Saturday, as the G2 Demoiselle Stakes will be the sixth race on the card. This race offers points on the Road to the Kentucky Oaks, and a distance of 1 1/8 miles will be covered.
Todd Pletcher has trained the most winners in the history of this race, landing seven victories. However, his previous two winners of the race are the most interesting, with Malathaat and Nest both passing this test in recent years.
Gambling Girl- 8/1
One of two runners in the race for Pletcher is Gambling Girl. Interestingly, this two-year-old is the preferred ride for Irad Ortiz Jr, but she does come into this with some form to prove at Aqueduct.
She was fourth in the Maid of the Mist Stakes at Aqueduct during the Belmont at the Big A meet, but she has previously landed victories over seven furlongs. Her victory in the Joseph A. Gimma Stakes came at Aqueduct, as she reached an Equibase rating of 81. But, I find it hard to support her based on her latest effort.
Foggy Night- 6/1
If there is a runner that could cause an upset this weekend, then Foggy Night looks to be well placed. She will need to start on the rail, which could be a potential hindrance, but her recent form is relatively solid.
She was second over a mile at Aqueduct on her previous appearance in the Good Sam, but there is every chance that she is likely to improve when stretched out over a greater distance. Evidence of that can be found on her maiden-breaking win at Parx in October. However, she does still have form to find based on the ratings, with her second last time reaching a career-best mark of 80.
Royal Spa- 8/1
If I were to look for a second choice in this race on Saturday, then Royal Spa would be it. This runner is trained by Rudolphe Brisset, and will be the ride of the in-form Joel Rosario.
She has made just one previous career start, but that was a very visually impressive display at Churchill Downs over 6 ½ furlongs, scoring a rating of 73. Her bloodline makes it very easy to support the claims that she will be better over this extended trip, and she could be a solid wager for those playing the exotics on Saturday.
Demoiselle Stakes Pick- Julia Shining 8/11
Pletcher always has a habit of sending a potentially special filly to Aqueduct for this race. This year’s contender to follow in the footsteps of Malathaat and Nest is likely to be Julia Shining. She will be the ride of Luis Saez this weekend, who has been in excellent form in recent weeks.
Julia Shining was a winner on debut at Keeneland in a maiden special weight in the middle of October, stretching away over seven furlongs to reach a rating of 85. She looks extremely progressive, and this extended trip should be the making of her.
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