A trio of Grade 1 stakes on the turf feature at Arlington Park in Chicago on Saturday.
The headline event is the Arlington Million, over ten furlongs. The favourite is Oscar Performance, who won the Secretariat over course and distance last year. He has had only one run this year. That was in the Grade 3 Poker over one mile at Belmont on June 17, which he won in a new course record time of 1.31.23. He is the only multiple Grade 1 winner in the field and should retain the class to win here.
Robert Bruce is a dual Group 1 winner in Chile. He is a winner of seven of his eight starts, his only loss coming in his most recent start. That was a sixth-place finish in the Grade 1 Manhattan at Belmont on June 9. However, he likely had an excuse for the poor finish as he was bumped during the race. Prior to that he won the Grade 3 Fort Marcy over nine furlongs at Belmont in May on his American debut.
Secretariat and Beverly D also feature
The Secretariat is over the same trip as the Million, only restricted to 3-year-olds. The choice here is Lucius Tiberius. He beat his elders in a handicap at the Curragh at this trip last month. He is stepping up in class but deserves the chance.
Platinum Warrior finished ninth in the Irish Derby, having become upset in the starting stalls. Prior to that he beat the Irish Derby winner, Latrobe, in the Group 3 Gallinule Stakes at the Curragh on May 27 by 2¼ lengths at this trip.
The Beverly D is at a mile and three sixteenths for fillies and mares. It’s hard to look past Aidan O’Brien’s Athena, winner of the Grade 1 Belmont Oaks in her last start. Daddys Lil Darling should be in the frame. She won the Grade 3 Modesty over course and distance last time. She is best known as the filly who was withdrawn at the start in last year’s Oaks after she spooked and bolted during a thunderstorm.