Grade 3 Go for Wand Handicap, 1m Dirt (19:06 GMT)
On master Timeform ratings, this appears to be a match between Highway Star and Jamyson 'n Ginger. However, this is a handicap, and the weights have been framed pretty well (unlike many similar races in America). That brings just about all of this seven-runner field into the equation, and the value could lie with Todd Pletcher's Lucy N Ethel, who looks the main speed and could well find herself on an uncontested lead. Sent off just 3/1 in a Grade 2 event won by Highway Star September, she did disappoint that day, but was returning from a 337-day layoff. Put in at a Morning Line price of 8/1, if anywhere in that region on the day, she would be worth a small interest.
Recommendation: Win back Lucy N Ethel
Grade 2 Demoiselle Stakes, 9f Dirt (20:12 GMT)
An interesting race, and a tough stamina test for two-year-old fillies going nine furlongs, many of which are not bred to want this far. However, one who has the pedigree to thrive given a thorough test is Indy Union. By Belmont Stakes winner Union Rags, out of an A.P. Indy mare, Jeremiah Englehart's filly should thrive at this distance. Indeed, she improved markedly to break her maiden last time, running at a mile on dirt for the first time. She did actually run over a little further on her prior start, but that came on turf and needs to be overlooked. With the two at the head of the market, Wonder Gadot and Daisy, having solid claims but looking far from world beaters, Indy Union is fancied to spring a small upset.
Recommendation: Win back Indy Union
Grade 2 Remsen Stakes, 9f Dirt (20:45 GMT)
The colts' equivalent of the previous race rightly sees Avery Island as the market leader, given how impressive he has been on his two most recent starts. The latest was a near-five length win over this track in the Grade 2 Nashua last month, and he is greatly respected. However, Avery Island has had a relatively easy time in front for both his wins, and is unlikely to be afforded that luxury here. With that in mind, he is taken on with Chad Brown's once-raced colt Alkhaatam, who should have benefitted greatly for his introduction, finishing third despite exhibiting signs of greenness. With a classy pedigree to call on, he should improve markedly, and can take the step up in class in his stride.
Recommendation: Win back Alkaatam
Grade 1 Cigar Mile, 1m Dirt (21:16 GMT)
New York's final Grade 1 contest of the year has drawn a classy field of ten, headed by recent Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile runner-up Sharp Azteca. Showing all his customary speed, Sharp Azteca put up a bold effort there, only being worn down late on by the strong-staying Battle of Midway. This one-turn mile will be much more of a speed test, and Sharp Azteca looks certain to go well if none the worse for those exertions. The problem Sharp Azteca may encounter is pace pressure, however, and it is possible this could set up for one to come from a little further back. The two obvious contenders to benefit if that occurs are Mind Your Biscuits and Practical Joke. The former steps up from sprint distances, but did beat Sharp Azteca in the seven-furlong Malibu Stakes last year, while Practical Joke just didn't really get the run of things when fourth in the aforementioned Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile. Of the pair, narrow preference is for the latter, who is taken to run down Sharp Azteca this time, on what will be his final start before retiring to stud.
Recommendation: Win back Practical Joke