$1 Million Whitney Tops Five Stakes Races at Saratoga on Saturday

Posted By Fairway Jay on August 6, 2021 - Last Updated on August 10, 2021

There’s a big day of racing Saturday at Saratoga, as the stakes schedule includes the $1 million Whitney, a Grade 1 race for older horses going 1 1/8 miles. The winner of the Whitney also gets an automatic fees-paid invitation to the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic at the Breeders’ Cup World Championships on Nov. 5 and 6 at Del Mar.

The 12-race card at Saratoga on Saturday, Aug. 7, features five stakes races, including three Grade 1s.

  • Race 8: $500,000 Longines Test Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at 7 furlongs
  • Race 9: $1 million Saratoga Derby Invitational for 3-year-olds at 1 3/16 miles on the turf
  • Race 10: $1 million Whitney Stakes for older horses at 1 1/8 miles

Also on the card in Race 7 and the start of the big Pick 6 is the Grade II $250,000 Glens Falls Stakes for older fillies and mares, 1 1/2 miles over the inner turf.

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Whitney Stakes Field and Odds

Race 10 and the $1 million Whitney — post time at 5:48 p.m. EST at Saratoga Race Course. You can watch all of Saturday’s races at Saratoga on TVG as part of its comprehensive daily racing coverage.

1 – By My Standards (10-1)

  • Jockey: Gabriel Saez
  • Trainer: W. Bret Calhoun

2 – Silver State (4-1)

  • Jockey: Ricardo Santana Jr.
  • Trainer: Steve Asmussen

3 – Swiss Skydiver (6-1)

  • Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.
  • Trainer: Ken McPeek

4 – Knicks Go (6-5)

  • Jockey: Joel Rosario
  • Trainer: Brad Cox

5 – Maxfield (8-5)

  • Jockey: Jose Ortiz
  • Trainer: Brendan Walsh

Early speed has won 22 of 27 races at this distance/on this surface, with seven taking them from gate to wire, according to Horse Racing Radar.

Four horses who won the Whitney have gone on to win the Breeders’ Cup Classic in the same year. The most recent was Gun Runner in 2017.

Race Contenders and Profiles

Improbable beat the stumbling and slow-starting favorite Tom’s d’Etat (third) in last year’s Whitney, and Whitney runner-up By My Standards returns as one of the contenders again this year. By My Standards has won seven times, with five runner-up finishes in 16 starts, and earned $2.25 million on the race track. This year’s small but elite five-horse field also includes multigraded stakes winner Maxfield, who has the best pedigree for the distance and has won seven of eight career starts, with $1.26 million in track earnings.

The morning line favorite is 5-year-old Knicks Go, who has raced 21 times with seven wins and $4.6 million in track winnings. He’s really emerged since EPO trainer Brad Cox took over his training, and he’ll be the front-runner and early speed in the Whitney. Knicks Go won a pair of allowance races last year and then won back-to-back Grade 1 races plus a Grade 3 last month with his fastest-ever speed figure of 117 (Equibase). The strength of the short field of runners also includes Silver State, who has won six straight races, including four this year, with $1. 67 million earned. His last race, in June, was a Grade 1 win in the Met Mile with an exciting finish over runner-up By My Standards and fourth-place race favorite Knicks Go. Completing the field is last year’s Preakness Stakes winner Swiss Skydiver, who will try to press the pace and could become the first filly since 1988 to win the Whitney.

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FairwayJay is a leading national sports and betting analyst and provides insight and information you can bet on to engage and assist the avid fan. His tee-to-green coverage and racing contributions have been provided to Churchill Downs, Twinspires, TVG, Forbes, TheLines, numberFire and PlayUSA platforms. Follow on Twitter: @FairwayJay

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