Timeform's US team focus on the excellent racing at Monmouth on Sunday, bringing you three selections...
Mshawish should be more than capable of taking this before stepping back into Grade 1 company...
There is a stellar card at Monmouth this evening, headed by the Haskell Invitational, and we can get proceedings off to a good start by backing Picozza in race 4 (18:22 BST). Although Picozza's best effort has come on an all-weather surface, he's still very proficient on turf, and this allowance contest on the grass doesn't have a great deal of depth to it. A repeat of his previous run in a similar race over course and distance earlier this month will see Picozza go very close.
Our next selection at Monmouth is in the Grade 2 Molly Pitcher Stakes at 19:53 BST, and features a mare in Natalie Victoria who was claimed for just $12.5k in the winter by her current trainer, Michelle Nevin. Nevin is a protégé of disgraced former-trainer Richard Dutrow, so it's hardly surprising that she has coaxed massive improvement from this six-year-old. Natalie Victoria's last two wins have been very impressive, and she looks ready for the step up to this level.
Mshawish is a very familiar name to European racing fans, having previously been trained by Mikel Delzangles in France. This very smart performer has form that gives him a realistic chance of making a winning Stateside debut in the Grade 3 Oceanport Stakes at 22:05 BST. Now in the care of Todd Pletcher, Mshawish's best effort came at Meydan in February, where he accounted for Trade Storm in the Zabeel Mile. He then ran a little below form behind Just a Way in the Dubai Duty Free, but it's worth bearing in mind that the winner is one of the world's best horses. Mshawish should be more than capable of taking this before stepping back into Grade 1 company.
Timeform US Smart Plays:
Monmouth race 4 (18:20 BST) win back #8 PICOZZA at 3.211/5 or longer
Monmouth race 7 (19:53 BST) win back #8 NATALIE VICTORIA at 3.39/4 or longer
Monmouth race 11 (22:05 BST) win back #7 MSHAWISH at 3.55/2 or longer