Ali Looks “Groovy” to Me


 2   KEE        ALI  (GIII)
  $150.000     4yo&Up      1 1/8m  Dirt          123lbs +penalties

We stay here in Lexington and catch a nice group for the Ali (GIII) going a mile and a eighth on the main oval here at KEE.  I’m probably going to be chalky in my selections here today and landed on Groovy as the top choice.  He just never seems to run a bad race and you always have to pay attention to the Mb Stables entrants.  He’s looking for his first win of the season, and I think it comes here today.  Let’s go to the outside post and take a horse that beat the top choice in the BC Classic (GI) last year… Gran Z had a pair of big wins last yeah, and is also looking for his first win of the ’21 season, and this is a good spot for him to go hunting.  I’ll put Dirty Kruz in the third spot, as he is another that is always around when they hand out checks, and those are the type of horses we love.

It’s a great field and should be a heck of a race. 

Here’s The Field –

   Sexy Back    Night Rider Stables    Castellano J J   123   6/1

Hasn’t won since taking the Roar at GP back in May of last season (DH).  He’s been close a few times but this is a bit softer than some of the fields he’s been up against.  He could be a very big factor at a good price.   

   Groovy    Mb Stables    Lezcano J   123   5/2

Hasn’t won in three races but he looks like the favorite to me.  Won the Dandy (GII) and the JC Gold Cup (GI) before finishing fourth on BC Day.  Both seasonal starts have resulted in on-the-board finishes, so I think he is the one to get past. 

   Russian Dictator    Gdp Inc    Saez G   123   4/1

A fairly consistent type that was third in the Toboggan (GIII) and again in the Tiznow while facing Cal-breds in his most recent.  Most of his wins have come at the Alw level, so he needs to find a bit more to get the job done vs. stakes horses.

   Involved    Nakamura Stables    Hernandez R M   123   7/1

Only five starts for this one and he changed hands before that last out third vs. OptAlw types at SA.  Broke maiden before that but despite being lightly raced, this is a sharp outfit that usually knows what they have.  He should be a price so you may want to pay attention to him. 

   Nb Forrest    Harrell Racing    Bejarano R   123   12/1

Sold two starts back and has run fifth in both of the starts for the new connections, so, they jump into the deep end of the pool and go after graded types.  He was last of twelve in his last start against graded types, so I’ll have to look at some others. 

   Dirty Kruz    Nakamura Stables    Saez L   123   7/2

Another that has been very consistent while facing graded company but hasn’t been able to break thru to get a win.  A second, a third and two fourths in his last four, all against black-type horses… can he get that little extra and get his picture taken?

   Strong Kommand    Tiratzo    Pennington F   123   6/1

One win last season taking down Cal-bred stakes types at SA but it’s been a mixed bag since that.  Sold for a pretty penny and has a single third vs Alw types for the new barn.  Was sixth last out vs. stakes horses, so he needs to find some old magic, fast. 

   Gran Z    Maxmillion Farm    Beschizza A   123   3/1

Back to back wins in the SD Hcp (GII) and the Awesome Again (GI), then was third on BC Day, so there is no doubt this one has the ability to beat anyone.  A fifth and a fourth thus far in the current season, so he needs to get back on course, but he definitely has to be watched.

COZMAN  2 / 8 / 6             Willie’s Green Card    2 / 1 / 6    


Categories: Grade III, STAKES ARTICLES

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