It's rare that a race outside the Breeders' Cup can define a horse as the best in the country, but that mantle is on the line for Ron The Greek in the Whitney Handicap on Saturday at Saratoga Race Course.Ron The Greek is the only multiple Grade 1 winner among older males, and adding a third victory at the game's top level would certainly separate him from the pack--even from a horse like Game On Dude, who has run faster but only has one Grade 1 win to date.Despite the 2-1 Grade 1 edge for Ron The Greek, I do think Game On Dude is the superior animal, but at some point accomplishment has to trump theory, and a treble consisting of Santa Anita, Stephen Foster, and Whitney Handicaps is enough to earn the top spot until some other horses start winning multiple Grade 1 races against open company.I'm bullish to bring this up now because I don't actually think Ron The Greek will win, so I feel as if this is giving him his just due for dancing in some pretty important dances and winning two of them.Elsewhere across the country, two classic races are this weekend: the Hambletonian for trotting Standardbreds is Saturday at The Meadowlands, and the Breeders Stakes is Sunday at Woodbine. TwinSpires.com is offering incentives to play both. I don't (and won't) have an opinion on the Woodbine action, but I do like Market Share and Stormin Normand in the Hambletonian--the third and seventh choices on the morning line, respectively, so I plan to get involved is those prices hold up to actual betting.
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TwinSpires' horse racing author, handicapper, and podcast host, Derek Simon of Denver, Colo. offers his insightful, humorous and sometimes controversial take on the horse racing industry. He even publishes the ROI on the picks he gives out.
TwinSpires' harness racing expert, Frank Cotolo follows all of the big North American circuits throughout the year, providing the best value picks and latest news from the sulky.
The Director of Marketing for Bloodstock Research Information Services (BRIS) and a lifelong Thoroughbred racing enthusiast and astute handicapper, Ed joined Churchill Downs Inc. following nine years as a writer and editor with Thoroughbred Times.
A writer and editor who has been following horse racing for fifteen years. Peter has written books for the Daily Racing Form Press; Crown; and Simon and Schuster; among other publishers, and regular features in The Horseplayer Magazine.
A television racing analyst for Churchill Downs, Jill has earned acclaim and a loyal audience throughout Thoroughbred racing.