Timeform US Preview: West can Coast home

There is Grade 1 action in the US on Saturday night
There is Grade 1 action in the US on Saturday night

Timeform's Mark Milligan previews Saturday's Grade 1 action in the US...

"In a year when the American three-year-old colts are far from a vintage bunch, West Coast put up what was arguably the best performance of any of them in winning the Travers last time..."

Grade 3 Noble Damsel Stakes, 1m Turf (Belmont 19:32 BST)

Only five runners, but a trappy little contest, with Time and Motion just getting the nod. Third at this level on her last two starts, Time and Motion had previously put up a solid effort when sixth (beaten just three lengths) behind Dickinson and Lady Eli in a Grade 1 at Keeneland in April. Sassy Little Lila also brings Grade 1 form into the race, and is feared most, while Celestine is another worthy of close consideration.

Selection: Time and Motion

Grade 3 Gallant Bob Stakes, 6f Dirt (Parx 21:14 BST)

Todd Pletcher's lightly-raced Coal Front is unexposed and brings a progressive profile into this competitive dirt sprint. A front-running winner of a 6.5f Grade 2 at Saratoga in July, Coal Front was far from disgraced when fifth to Practical Joke at the top level last time. Excitations was runner-up to Coal Front in that aforementioned Grade 2 and may well fill the same spot again, while American Pastime has been recording big figures at allowance level and looks to make the step up.

Selection: Coal Front

Grade 1 Cotillion Stakes, 8.5f Dirt (Parx 21:55 BST)

A race that revolves around Abel Tasman, who has carried all before during the spring and summer, recording a hat-trick of top-level wins. Bob Baffert's filly is versatile pace-wise and seems to have very few chinks in her armour. Strictly on ratings, Salty looks the one to give her most to do, but she has already been put in her place several times by Abel Tasman, and it's hard to see what she can do to reverse the form. Of those at bigger prices, each-way claims can be made for Lockdown, whose last effort is best forgiven. A return to her previous form puts her in with a shout and she is a tentative selection to try and topple the solid favourite.

Selection (win and place): Lockdown

Grade 1 Pennsylvania Derby, 9f Dirt (Parx 22:45 BST)

In a year when the American three-year-old colts are far from a vintage bunch, West Coast put up what was arguably the best performance of any of them in winning the Travers last time. Sent straight to the front by Mike Smith, West Coast was able to dictate before drawing away for a convincing win by just over three lengths. Bob Baffert's charge is unlikely to be able to dominate this contest from the front, however, but he has won races with a stalking style before, so that shouldn't be too much of an issue. Irish War Cry is a little in and out, but his best form gives him a big chance, and he may emerge as the main danger, while Irap has built up a solid and consistent profile, and should be on the premises once again.

Selection: West Coast

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