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Stephen Foster Handicap Betting – Will Take Charge Rolls At Churchill Downs

Posted by on 6/12/2014 11:02:21 PM

The Grade-1 Stephen Foster Handicap is a prestigious event for horses aged three years and older. Named after the man who wrote “My Old Kentucky Home”, the anthem of the Kentucky Derby, this race is 1 1/8 miles long at Churchill Downs, and it is run on dirt with a purse of $500,000 up for grabs.

There is an excellent field lining up in Kentucky on Saturday, but the winner will be one of the more consistent thoroughbreds out there, even though he is coming off a poor performance. Will Take Charge goes to the winner’s circle.

What : Horse Betting

When : Saturday, June 14th, post time TBA

Where : Churchill Downs, Louisville, KY

Pick : Will Take Charge

Departing has seven wins in 10 starts, and he also finished sixth in last year’s Preakness Stakes, so he has faced some high-level competition in the past. His win at an allowance race at Churchill Downs in April was his first start since last September, but this will be the real test for this four-year-old gelding.

Golden Ticket has made 25 starts and 16 of them have come in graded-stakes races. He has wins in two of those events and he finished second to Fort Larned in this race last year, so Golden Ticket knows how to compete and he definitely knows his way around Churchill Downs, so keep an eye on this five-year-old.

Jaguar Paw is the longshot of the field and while he has 24 starts, 18 have been either maiden or allowance races, and two have been graded-stakes races. He needed six tries to break his maiden and he finished sixth in the non-graded Essex Handicap at Oaklawn Park in February. Don’t expect much from this seven-year-old.

Long River is making his 12th career start, and after a string of five starts where he finished first or second, he finished fifth at the Grade-2 Charles Town Classic in April. That featured a solid field, so Long River is capable and you can probably get him for good value.

Moonshine Mullin has won four races in a row after taking the Grade-2 Alysheba Stakes last month, and before this streak, he hasn’t won since an allowance race in April 2012, so this has come out of nowhere. That makes Moonshine Mullin a threat, but this six-year-old might be in over his head.

Mylute came in fourth at the Alysheba Stakes, and he made a pair of Triple Crown starts in 2013, finishing fifth at the Kentucky Derby and then third at the Preakness. There is definitely some speed in this four-year-old, but his only wins have come in maiden or allowance races.

Prayer For Relief finished second at the Grade-3 Pimlico Special and he does have a lot of experience in handicap races, which could come in handy. He does have a few graded-stakes wins under his saddle with victories at the Grade-2 West Virginia Derby and the Grade-2 Super Derby in August and September 2011, along with the Grade-3 Iowa Derby in June of that year. He then won the Grade-3 Cornhusker Handicap last June, so there is hope for this six-year-old.

Revolutionary beat out Prayer For Relief at the Pimlico Special for his first win since an allowance race back in January, and this four-year-old is well known to betting players. After winning the Grade-3 Withers and the Grade-2 Louisiana Derby last year, he came in third at the Kentucky Derby and fifth at the Belmont Stakes. He stumbled to a seventh at the Grade-1 Donn Handicap in February, but rebounded for a second at the Grade-2 Oaklawn Handicap two months later. He will be a favorite here.

Will Take Charge won the Oaklawn Handicap and will probably be the horse to beat at Churchill Downs on Saturday. He did finish sixth in the Alysheba Stakes, but that seems to be more the exception than the norm for this four-year-old, who had a run of eight races in which he finished first (four times) or second (including in the Breeders’ Cup Classic in November). More impressively, all eight of those races were graded-stakes events and he finished in the top 10 of all three Triple Crown races in 2013. This is going to be a very tough horse to beat.

How It Will Play Out

Will Take Charge didn’t put his best foot forward at Churchill Downs last month, but he’ll change that up on Saturday by strolling to the victory.

Stephen Foster Handicap Betting Pick: Will Take Charge

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