Expert Pick of the Week: 2023 Street Sense Stakes

Oct 27, 2023 John Mucciolo

Moonlight running at Belmont At The Big A

Moonlight running at Belmont At The Big A (Photo by Coglianese Photography)

A talented cast of eight juveniles will travel 1 1/16 miles in Sunday’s $200,000 Street Sense S. (G3) at Churchill Downs. The opening day co-feature attracted multiple nice prospects that could be important players heading into the 2024 season.

The Todd Pletcher-trained Moonlight debuted on July 29 on the Saratoga lawn and finished a fine second to eventual Grade 1 victor Carson’s Run, coming home more than two lengths clear of his nearest foe. Racing in an off-the-turf event at Aqueduct second time out, the $285,000 juvenile purchase forced the pace and took over readily turning for home en route to an eight-length waltz while coming home swiftly.

Moonlight has posted a pair of good half-mile drills leading up to his stakes debut, and the move to two turns will be an easy one for the colt. The Kentucky-bred gray will get a similar trip to what he received last time out, and passing him late will be a tall task with Luis Saez inheriting the mount.

Bill Mott’s Parchment Party was last early before unleashing a sustained late burst to win at first asking on the oval while going 1 1/16 miles on debut. The June foal has a lot of room for improvement obviously, and the expensive son of Constitution will surely benefit from having a start under his belt leading up to this difficult assignment. Purchased for $450,000 as a yearling, the Pin Oak color bearer has registered four morning drills on the surface in advance of Sunday, and the colt will be very tough if he shows some interest leaving the gate in this venture. The Kentucky-bred bay will have James Graham in the silks once again.

Kenny McPeek’s Generous Tipper, who was third in the Breeders’ Futurity (G1), as well as smart debut winner Gettysburg Address, both merit respect as each of the contenders will run over the famed Churchill Downs oval for the initial time.

Expert Pick

A trifecta with #4 Moonlight on top of #5 Parchment Party, #1 Generous Tipper, and #2 Gettysburg Address in the 2023 Street Sense Stakes is the Best Bet of the Week.

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