The middle of summer is upon us and the three-year-old races are heating up once again. The two stakes races this weekend are going to give us a clearer picture of who belongs in next month's Midsummer Classic as well as the Breeders Cup Classic.
Jim Dandy (G2)
Alternation: Did not run in any of the triple crown races. Showed promise by coming from behind and taking the G2 Peter Pan after running a disappointing 5th in the Arkansas Derby. Look for him to step into the spotlight, finish in the money and upset the ML favorite, Stay Thirsty.
Brilliant Speed: Has finished in the money 5 out of his 6 starts. The only race that eluded him was the Kentucky Derby. Likes to come from behind as well and should add another finish in the money to his resume this coming Saturday.
Shackelford: With a see-saw year for the three-year-olds, it's his turn to be the front runner of the group again. The Kentucky Derby and Belmont proved to be too much for this gritty horse, but the mile and an eight distance seems to be right in his wheelhouse. With a spot in the Breeders Cup Classic on the line, look for Shackelford to capitalize on the opportunity this coming Sunday.
Pants On Fire: Another horse that has talent who skipped the final two legs of the triple crown races after finishing a disappointing 9th in the Kentucky Derby. Already has proven he can run with the best by beating the runner-up in the Derby, Nehro back in March at the Louisiana Derby. Look for him to step back into the spotlight Sunday and don't be surprised if he comes away punching a ticket to the Breeders Cup Classic in November.