A small, yet still quite tough crop of fillies and mares will be on display on Saturday in one of the two Grade 1 races held across the country this weekend at the Vanity Stakes.
This race is clearly all about Beholder. The super mare has been an odds on favorite just about everywhere she goes, and this race is probably not going to be an exception to that rule, especially knowing that the field is going to end up being relatively small.
Then again, that's nothing new for Beholder either. Largely thanks to the fact that few have wanted to try their hands at beating her, she hasn't run against a field larger than seven since the 2013 Kentucky Oaks.
Warren's Veneda will likely be the second choice after winning the Santa Margarita Stakes here at Santa Anita in March as a 3 to 2 favorite.
My Sweet Addiction, Gas Total and Legacy all figure to be at least 10 to 1 longshots to round out this five-horse field.
FAVORITE TO FOLLOW
There's just nothing not to like about Beholder. Since the '13 Kentucky Oaks, she’s won all but one race entered, that being the Oscar Phipps Stakes at Belmont Park on Belmont Stakes day last year.
The big question is whether she is ready to run a race like this at the Grade 1 level after spending basically nine months away from the track. Beholder left little down at the Santa Lucia Stakes in April here at Santa Anita, but that was an ungraded stakes race. Still, with over $3.4M in lifetime earnings, including almost three million of which came here at Santa Anita, it's tough to bet against Beholder.
UNDERDOG TO WATCH
We're at least willing to entertain the prospects of betting on Warren's Veneda in this one. She’s run three very impressive races this year, winning the Pasadena Stakes, the Santa Maria Stakes and the Santa Margarita Stakes by 5 1/2, 2 3/4, and 7 1/4 lengths respectively.
Of course, Warren's Veneda has only been a big favorite in these races because of the fact that Beholder hasn't run. We're afraid that the price isn't going to be fantastic on Warren's Veneda, and it's also a bit scary running against a mare who is going to try to basically run the same race from just off the pace.
ANALYSIS AND PREDICTION
The speed isn't there in this race to push Beholder though, and that's bad news for the rest of the field. This mare can basically set the secondary tempo wherever she wants to put it and turn on the jets when she wants to as well.
Though we could see Warren's Veneda challenging, we would still take Beholder and lay two lengths to the rest of the field without even remotely hesitating.
This isn't going to be the sexiest result on the face of the earth, and the exacta may literally only pay around $7.00 or so, but still, making $7.00 on your $2.00 bet isn't the worst payoff for two minutes of work at the Vanity Stakes on Saturday afternoon.
Play Beholder to win the Vanity Stakes
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