2024 Sagamore Sired Stakes (Horseshoe Indianapolis) - Analysis, picks and predictions

Pick Pony |May 13, 2024, 8:53 p.m.

About the Swifty Sired Fillies Stakes


Indiana-sired three-year-olds go head to head

The Sagamore Sired Stakes is a 5 1/2 furlong race held annually at Horseshoe Indianapolis (formerly Indiana Downs). The race is restricted to Indiana-sired three-year-olds and has been run since 2014.

Horseshoe Indianapolis track bias

There is a theory among handicappers that speed horses tend to perform better at Horseshoe Indianapolis. In 2019, 47 percent of winners in 5/5.5-furlong sprints on the main track showed early speed, which reduced to 33 percent in races over six furlongs. However, a significant number of horses still get an early run and show good pace from the gate.

Sprints on the turf also produced a similar outcome, with 34 percent of winners over the 5/5.5 furlongs going wire-to-wire at the track. Indiana Grand is a decent venue for sprinters, and handicappers have regularly enjoyed taking advantage of this angle.

Maintaining pace on the turf over the maximum distance is notably much harder. Horses that run over one mile-plus on the grass rarely go wire-to-wire, with few early pace setters lasting the distance.

2024 Sagamore Sired Stakes entries (with analysis, picks, and predictions)

Below are the entries for the 2024 Sagamore Sired Stakes race. Many inexperienced horses are in the bunch, which adds a fair amount of uncertainty to the handicapping analysis.

Booming

Starting in post position 1, Booming’s speed has consistently trended higher each race, but even his best speed is no match for this class. Toss.

Cringe

The battle for third-best speed is between Cringe and Kingsbury Road. Cringe’s speed has been erratic, and his last showing was not up to par. However, that race may have been an anomaly. A stumble out of the gate and a bizarre five-path run throughout the race were cringe-worthy.

Cringe will likely finish in the money, probably Show, but it will be close. Watch the overlay and drop some bacon on him if an opportunity presents.

Kneedeep Justice

Speed and pace figures are trending higher for Kneedeep Justice, but let’s not forget, he still has not broken his maiden - and the Sagamore Sired Stakes are not the race to do it in. He’s already been beaten by Hoosier Daddy Now, Reflex, Oil Man, Cringe, Kingsbury Road, Booming, and Tacklin Fuel. Ouch.

Rigoberto

With outstanding speed in his only race, Rigoberto goes in as the clear favorite. But can he duplicate his April 8 effort in this high-stakes race? Cipriano Contreras certainly has the chops to get him there, and you can’t write off the experience he gleaned from her first start. His works seem to hint Contreras is happy with his speed and early speed kills at Horseshoe Indianapolis. We have no option but to give the nod to Rigoberto for the win.

Oil Man

Oil Man only broke his maiden a couple of weeks ago after finishing third by three lengths against Reflex and Kneedeep Justice. And although his works are improving, there’s a bit more speed in this race than he has faced in the past. Still, he could set the pace which counts for a lot at Horseshoe Indianapolis. He’ll finish in the top half of the pack, potentially close to ITM, but we don’t think he’s quite up to this level yet.

Greewhiz

Greenwhiz’s latest performance put him in the ranks of Rigoberto and Hoosier Daddy Now, and his stats are improving rapidly. Genaro Garcia has really helped this gelding along, but taking nine races to break your maiden says a lot. It is hard to explain how his speed improved so profoundly in the last two races other than maturation or something in the water. This race should tell us a lot about Greewhiz’s future. He’ll finish slightly out of the money but only by one or two positions.

Tacklin Fuel

Tacklin Fuel is at the bottom of every possible stat - and speed is still declining. This will be his second start after a long 179-day layoff, and that last 4f works made us blink twice. Still, with speed this bad, we have to toss him.

Tiz Eddie

Tiz Eddie broke his maiden in his last race and then took an extended six-month vacation to sort things out. Tomas Medina hasn’t proven to be a 90+ days away guru either, which is a shame because Tiz Eddie really looked like he was going somewhere. If it weren’t for that long layoff, we’d put him close to being in the money. Toss - unless a great overlay develops.

Kingsbury Road

Who has the third-best speed in this race - Kingbury Road or Cringe? That’s the 100 thousand dollar question for this race. While Cringe’s speed seems erratic, Kingsbury Road’s speed is trending upward, and AI predicts a potential bounce up in this race. However, his performance at this distance has been consistently dismal. He may need a bit more distance to stretch it out. We’re biting the bullet and putting Kingsbury Road out of the money by a hair, but it might not matter. An underlay will likely be in the making.

Unbridled Slope

Despite rising pace numbers all around, Unbridled Scope is one of the slower horses in this race, and like Tiz Eddie, he’s coming in after a long six-month layoff. But unlike Tiz Eddie, Devarus Douglass is very good at bringing horses in prime shape after layoffs. Unbridled Scope may be going places - but not to the tote board in this race - at least not right now.

Hoosier Daddy Now

Hoosier Daddy Now ranks as the second fastest horse in the race, and the drop from 6 1/2 furlongs to 5 1/2 proved ideal. Works have been sharp, but he hasn’t had much rest, and the lack of early speed won’t be in his favor.

Reflex

It took him nine races to finally break his maiden, but when he did, he did it with style—and a speed number nearly 50% better than his average. How does that even happen? A sudden growth spurt or a new vitamin cocktail, maybe? We should know more after this race, but for now, toss while keeping a close eye on the overlay because this horse is improving astonishingly fast.