Alfred G Vanderbilt Handicap 2015 at Saratoga Race Course

Dave Bond | OTB Writer

Las Vegas, NV - The Grade 1 Alfred G Vanderbilt Handicap is on tap for Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, New York this Saturday, August 1. Horses three years old and upward will be after the winner's share of the $350,000 purse when they take to Saratoga's dirt track and race six furlongs.

An accomplished field of seven have been confirmed for the Alfred G. Vanderbilt - race 8 on Saratoga's busy Saturday card. Post time is 5:03 PM. Let's take a look into the past performances of all seven entries for this Grade 1 stakes.

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2015 Alfred G Vanderbilt Handicap Race Favorite Entries

The Big Beast - Anthony Dutrow trained colt made his stakes debut last August and won the Grade 1 King's Bishop Stakes at Saratoga after four career starts yielded two wins and a second place finish. He races for just the third time this year and comes off a fourth place finish as favorite in the Grade 1 Carter Handicap at Aqueduct in April and an impressive four race win streak including a first level Allowance score March 1 and 6 1/2 months away due to an ankle chip directly after his King's Bishop score. John Velazquez will be in the reins from gate 6 as The Big Beast looks to make it five wins in his last six starts, three straight wins at Saratoga and four wins at six furlongs.

Rock Fall - Todd Pletcher trained colt finished eighth in his debut and has reeled off five straight wins since - by a combined 26 1/4 lengths - all at this distance! Last time out was a career-best effort - a win in the Grade 2 True North Stakes at Belmont Park June 5 which followed three straight Allowance wins and a maiden score at Belmont Park in May, 2014. Rock Fall has been impressive indeed and looks to keep the roll going from post 3 with two-time defending Spa riding champ Javier Castellano in the saddle.

Alfred G Vanderbilt Handicap 2015 | Remaining Contenders

Salutos Amigos - has won five of his last six starts (all stakes) for trainer David Jacobson - the Mr. Prospector Stakes at Monmouth June 28, the Grade 3 Tom Fool Handicap in March, the Grade 3 Toboggan Stakes in February, the minor Gravesend Stakes in December and the Grade 3 Fall Highweight Handicap November 27 with an eighth in March 28 Dubai Golden Shaheen at Meydan sandwiched in there. He also had a seventh in the Breeders' Cup Sprint along the way and a win in the Grade 3 Bold Ruler Handicap in October. Salutos Amigos has been very competitive the last 10 months and is expected to be in the mix Saturday as well. Cornelio Velasquez gets the mount on the 122 pound highweight from gate 2.

Departing - Albert Stall trained gelding has eight wins, two seconds and three third place finishes in 17 career starts and enters off one of those wins - in the Grade 2 Firecracker Stakes at Churchill Downs June 27. Before that was a third in the minor Opening Verse Stakes May 30, a disappointing seventh in the Grade 1 Clark Handicap in November and consecutive runner-up finishes including the Grade 2 Fayette Stakes at Keeneland in October and the minor Homecoming Classic at Churchill Downs in September. Departing has placed in four if his last five starts overall and will be after his second straight graded stakes score when he leaves from the rail with Joel Rosario aboard.

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Clearly Now - multiple graded stakes winning Brian Lynch trainee looks for his first win since the 2014 Grade 3 Belmont Sprint Championship a year ago when he earned a field-best 113 Beyer Speed Figure. Since that race he has placed in just two of five starts. Last time out was a second in the Grade 3 Belmont Sprint Championship July 4 after a sixth in the Grade 2 True North Stakes in June, a second in the minor Diablo Stakes in May, a seventh in the Grade 1 Carter Handicap in April and an eighth in the Grade 1 Forego Stakes last August. He has five wins, five seconds and five third place finishes in 20 career starts but hasn't looked all that great lately. Luis Saez has been tabbed with changing Clearly Now's fortunes around - from gate 4 Saturday.

Favorite Tale - has six wins, three seconds and a third place finish in 14 career starts. He looked very good last summer winning the Grade 3 Gallant Bob Stakes at Parx in September and finishing second in the Grade 3 Jersey Shore Stakes in August but has looked OK in four starts since that time. Last time out was a good win by 4 ½ lengths in the Grade 2 Smile Sprint Stakes at Gulfstream July 5 after a fifth in the Grade 2 True North Stakes at Belmont Park June 5, a second in the minor Decathlon Stakes in May, a six month freshening and a fifth in the minor Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash in November. Favorite Tale has shown good form in the past and looks to build on a nice win last time out when he departs from the outside post 7 with Irad Ortiz guiding him.

Viva Majorca - Ian Wilkes trained gelding looks for his first graded stakes score Saturday off a win in the minor Kelly's Landing Stakes at Churchill Downs June 27, a fourth in the Grade 3 Aristides Stakes on that track in May and an Allowance Optional Claiming score in April. He has won two of his last three starts after failing to place in his prior two. Viva Majorca enters in decent form and leaves from post 5 with Julien Leparoux aboard.

2015 Alfred G Vanderbilt Handicap Entries & Odds

Race 8 on Saratoga Race Course's Saturday card with a Post Time of 5:14 PM.

Entry Horse Jockey Trainer ML Odds
1 Departing J. Rosario A. Stall, Jr.
2 Salutos Amigos C. Velasquez D. Jacobson
3 Rock Fall J. Castellano T. Pletcher
4 Clearly Now L. Saez B. Lynch
5 Viva Majorca J. Leparoux I. Wilkes
6 The Big Beast J. Velazquez A. Dutrow
7 Favorite Tale I. Ortiz, Jr. G. Preciado

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