Rubilinda, a beautifully-bred daughter of Frankel, spent most of her afternoon run at Belmont Park at the back of a 10-horse field. Unhurried. And, unworried.
When it came time to run, jockey Jose Ortiz Jr. pushed the right button and the ultra-talented 2-year-old filly gassed from last to first in about an eighth of a mile to run down front-running Smiling Causeway near the wire and capture the 3rd running of the $100,000 Christiecat Stakes on the opening day of the Belmont Park Fall Meet.
Rubilinda, owned by Don Alberto Stable and trained by Chad Brown, has now catapulted to two wins in three tries and appears to be the most talented 2YO grass filly in the land after Friday’s tremendous, late-charging victory.
Despite having traffic issues in each of her first two starts, Rubilinda has an impressive MSW victory in her career debut and a fast-closing second in her second start. Now, she adds a Stakes victory to her resume.
The filly returned $3.70, $2.80 & $2.60. The exacta, which we touted, too, returned $16.90 for each $1 bet.
Hope you jumped on board.
I won’t be handicapping the Belmont Park card on a regular basis, but, from time to time, I will be looking at select races at the New York track and other locations around the country. On Saturday, I will be adding some commentary on the card slated for Louisiana Downs — if the horrendous hurricane does not impact the area and causes the “Super Derby” to be suspended.
Let’s take a closer look at the $100,000 Christicat for Fillies 3YO:
8th: 4-9-6-7-5-1…I love Rubilinda (4) in this spot and I think the 5-2 ML is generous odds, if they are available by post time. This daughter of the grand sire Frankel is bred from top to bottom for the grass surface, and she has already shown that she could become brilliant over it. In her debut on May 27 at Belmont, she broke her maiden in a 6-furlong sprint coming from dead last to win by 31/4 lengths. And, in that spectacular run, she had to alter her course not once, but twice. Do yourself a favor and go watch the replay of that race. It was spectacular for a baby making her first start. In her second out, which was July 9 at Belmont, she went 7 furlongs and she encountered significant traffic issues, which not only led to, but accounted for her second place finish to Cherry Lodge (a good one in her own right). In that affair, Rubilinda was bumped in-between horse and had to be steadied — as in snatched up — on two separate occasions. Today, she is back at the 6-furlong distance, but I don’t think the length of the race matters that much to her. I think all the matters is whether or not she can get a clean trip. If she does, I think she airs this field — and it is a darn good one. And, I think she stamps her ticket to the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf. Adorable Miss (9) cuts back from a 1-mile turf event to this sprint for trainer Todd Pletcher. She has notched 3 wins and a third in only 4 starts and has two Stakes victories to her credit already. Much more experienced that Rubilinda, and, obviously, very talented. After her win in the Martha Washington Stakes at Gulfstream Park on July 4, she was shipped to Fasig-Tipton in Lexington for the summer’s best Horses of Racing Age Sale. I went by and took a look at her and she is beautiful. She has posted five steady works since July 29 and appears to be ready. But there has been a lot of travel involved. Epping Forest (6) goes for trainer Christophe Clement and the New York-bred is coming off a near miss in the Coronation Cup Stakes at Saratoga on July 31. She faced open competition in that one and stormed from near the back of the pack to lose by only 3/4 of a length. The time before that she ran a good one to finish third, less than a length behind runner-up Danceland, and that one is good, too. Can’t leave out of the equation. Noble Freud (7) will join her stablemate, Rubilinda, in this one for trainer Chad Brown. This one is a NY-bred, too, and figures to be the pace-setter from the get-go. I hate to call her a rabbit, because she ran a solid race in the G3 Victory Ride to American Gal, who may be the best 2YO turf filly right now. But she should give her roommate something to shoot for. Heavenly Score (5) and Smiling Causeway (1) both have solid credentials, in their own right. But I bet the 4 to win/place and then key over/under all the other numbers listed. I take a solid key over the 4 over the 9-6-7, in particular.
Good Luck &
All the Best/Gene