Good Magic is the 2-1 morning line favorite to win the $1.25 million Travers Stakes on Saturday on NBC. A field of 11 will go to the post on Saturday with a number of serious challengers to Good Magic. Gronkowski is listed as the second choice in the betting at odds of 4-1, while Wonder Gadot is the third choice at odds of 5-1.
Let’s look at the race and Travers Stakes picks.
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Horse - Trigger Warning / Jockey - Irwin Rosendo / Trainer - Mike Rone / Odds - 30-1
Horse - Wonder Gadot / Jockey - Irad Ortiz, Jr. / Trainer - Mark Casse / Odds - 5-1
Horse - Gronkowski / Jockey - Joel Rosario / Trainer - Chad Brown / Odds - 4-1
Horse - Bravazo / Jockey - Luis Saez / Trainer - D. Wayne Lukas / Odds - 12-1
Horse - Vino Rosso / Jockey -John Velazquez / Trainer - Todd Pletcher / Odds - 10-1
Horse - Meistermind / Jockey - Manny Franco / Trainer - Steve Asmussen / Odds - 30-1
Horse - King Zachary / Jockey - Robby Albarado / Trainer - Dale Romans/ Odds -15-1
Horse - Mendelssohn / Jockey - Ryan Moore / Trainer - Aidan O'Brien / Odds - 12-1
Horse - Good Magic / Jockey - Jose Ortiz / Trainer - Chad Brown / Odds - 2-1
Horse - Tenfold / Jockey - Rafael Santana, Jr. / Trainer - Steve Asmussen / Odds - 8-1
Horse - Catholic Boy / Jockey - Javier Castellano / Trainer - Jonathan Thomas / Odds - 8-1
The Travers Stakes has a 2-1 favorite in Good Magic, but there are a number of horses that could win this race. When we handicap this race we have to start with Good Magic, who is last year’s champion juvenile male. The horse won the Haskell last month. The concern with backing the horse is that he has yet to have a Beyer Speed Figure of 100 in his five starts this year, so he is not a superstar horse. The distance of a mile and a quarter could also be an issue for this horse. Good Magic is definitely overvalued at odds of 2-1. He is still a solid horse, but he shouldn’t be listed at these type of odds. The question is who can beat him.
Gronkowski is the second choice in the betting at odds of 4-1. The horse finished second to Justify in the Belmont Stakes. The horse is trained by Chad Brown and all indications are that he is training well and improving and we know that he can handle the distance.
Wonder Gadot is a filly but she did beat Canadian-bred males in the first two legs of the Canadian Triple Crown. The problem in taking this horse is that this field is much tougher than anything she has faced in Canada. It has also been more than a century since a filly won the Travers.
Tenfold and Vino Rosso are coming out of the Jim Dandy which was not a strong field, so there are concerns in backing each of them. Mendelssohn didn’t look good in losing in the Dwyer and he has shown nothing since a UAE Derby win that looks weaker and weaker as time goes on.
Catholic Boy looked good in winning the Belmont Derby and he could be worth a look at nice odds on Saturday.
Travers Stakes Picks
There is no question that Good Magic has been a good horse, as he is almost always in the money, but I just can’t see him as a 2-1 favorite in this race. The distance is a concern and there are a number of horses who could challenge him. I think you can make a case for Gronkowski and his odds are definitely more favorable at odds of 4-1. I also think that Catholic Boy is worth considering and he get him at odds of 8-1. I will take both of those horses to win. I also think an exacta box with Good Magic, Gronkowski and Catholic Boy could be a good choice and pay out well on Saturday.
The Travers Stakes takes place on Saturday, August 25 at Saratoga Race Course with a start time of 5:44 p.m. Eastern on NBC.
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