2022 Alabama Stakes: Nest Can Give Todd Pletcher a Fourth Saratoga Success

Nest Belmont Stakes
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The 2022 Alabama Stakes, which will be run at Saratoga Race Course in Upstate New York this Saturday (20th Aug), revolves around the Todd Pletcher-trained NEST, as his star 3 year-old filly looks to follow-up her easy recent track win in the Coaching Club American Oaks. She’ll take on six others, that include this season’s Kentucky Oaks winner – Secret Oath – but after slamming her by 12 1/2 lengths last time out Nest will be all the rage to repeat the dose this Saturday.

DID YOU KNOW?  Trainer Todd Pletcher has won 3 of the last 9 runnings of the Alabama Stakes

What Date/Time Is The 2022 Alabama Stakes?

Run over 10 furlongs (a mile-and-a-quarter), the Grade One Alabama Stakes is for 3 year-old fillies and run at Saratoga, one of many tracks owned by the NYRA.

📅Date: Saturday August 20, 2022
🏇Racecourse: Saratoga, New York
💰 Purse: $600,000

You can bet on the Grade One Alabama Stakes with BetOnline and also get a 50% welcome bonus (up to $1,000) to use on the race.

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Nest Can Provide Pletcher With A Fourth Alabama Stakes Win

Nest will try to turnabout Kentucky Oaks form with Secret Oath in Coaching Club American OaksThe horse racing betting ahead of Saturday’s Grade 1 Alabama Stakes is heavily focused around the Todd Pletcher-trained NEST @ 1/2 With BetOnline, who bolted to victory by 12 1/2 lengths in the Coaching Club American Oaks over nine furlongs here at Saratoga on July 23.

In winning that Grade 1 contest, she also reversed Kentucky Oaks placings with Secret Oath after finishing a 2 length second to the D Wayne Lukas 3 year-old in the Kentucky Oaks back on May 6 at Churchill Downs.

Since that Kentucky Oaks silver medal, Nest has also run a cracking second in the Grade One Belmont Stakes at another NYRA track – Belmont Park – and it’s clear that she’s progressing well as her 3 year-old campaign continues.

So, as we head to the Alabama Stakes this Saturday, the ‘head-to-head’ record between Nest and Secret Oath sits at one win each – however, it was hard to not be taken by the way NEST @ 1/2 With BetOnline disposed of Secret Oath last time and back at the same track she’s taken to confirm that form. Jockey Irad Ortiz Jr, who won this race in 2012, continues in the saddle.

Yes, many feel the real Secret Oath didn’t turn up the last day at Saratoga, but, regardless, surely a 12 1/2 length turnaround for Secret Oath is way too much ground for the Lukas filly to make up!

The favourite has also taken 60% of the last 10 runnings of the Alabama Stakes, while 7 of the last 10 winners hailed between gates 4-7 – Nest has the 4 gate. With these key stats on her side too, Nest is taken to give Pletcher his fourth success in this Grade One contest.

Back NEST to win the Alabama Stakes with BetOnline and also get a 50% welcome bonus (up to $1,000) to use on the race.


Pletcher Has Already Won The Alabama Stakes Three Times

todd pletcher
Todd Pletcher

Trainer Todd Pletcher, who trains the likely Alabama Stakes favorite, Nest, also has a decent record in the race – winning it three times.

In 2013 his Princess Of Sylmar took the prize under jockey Javier Castellano and the barn added to that the following year when the John Velazquez-ridden Stopchargingmaria won it.

That trainer-jockey combination also struck again in the Alabama Stakes 12 months ago with Malathaat (watch again below) in the famous silks of powerful global thoroughbred owners Shadwell Estate.

Plecther also has another bullet to fire at this Saratoga Grade One in Goddess Of Fire. The Red Oak Stable-owned filly faded into 11th in the Kentucky Oaks at Churchill Downs on May 6, so looks no threat to the two big names on that evidence. Goddess Of Fire did shape better after a 69-day break when placing in the Wilton Stakes here on July 14, though.

Gerrymander Looks To Upset The Nest/Secret Oath Applecart

Chad Brown
Chad Brown

Trainer Chad Brown has been grabbing the headlines this week for an alleged domestic violence incident, but the Preakness Stakes-winning handler will be looking to be in the news for better reasons if his improving 3 year-old filly – GERRYMANDER @ 7/2 With BetOnline – can spoil the ‘Nest Party’ in Saturday’s Alabama Stakes.

His filly was last seen winning by 3 lengths at Belmont Park on June 25 in the Grade Two Mother Goose Stakes – which was her third career win from just six starts.

She stayed on well that last day over 1m 1/2f to suggest the extra 1 1/2f here will be within range, plus she’s also tasted success at Saratoga in the past when winning at the New York track on debut back on Aug 29 (2021) in a Maiden Special Weight.

Jockey Joel Rosario, who rode her last time and has won on the filly twice in the past gets the leg-up.

Jockey Jose L Ortiz Has A Fine Record In The Alabama Stakes

Jose L Ortiz

If you want to blinding follow the jockey with the best record in the Alabama Stakes, then look no further than Jose L Ortiz!

The pocket-sized Puerto Rican mopped up three wins on the bounce in this Grade One between 2107 and 2019 – this year he rides the William Mott-trained Nostalgic.

In fact, one of those three Alabama Stakes wins for Ortiz was also riding for Mott, when the pair teamed-up in 2017 with Elate.

If successful this year, Ortiz will move one step closer to equalling the winning-most jockeys in this race – Jorge Velasquez, Jerry Bailey and Mike E Smith, who have all won this prize five times.

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Alabama Stakes Picks and Preview

Del Mar Oaks Facts and Figures

2022 Alabama Stakes: Full Runners and Riders

1. SKRATCH KAT @ 30/1 With BetOnline
Trainer: Philip A Bauer
Jockey: Julien R Leparoux
Wins: 2
Form: 2-1-4-5-1

Winner last time out at Churchill Downs, but was only a Claiming Race so would need to improve a fair bit to figure here.

2. GODDESS OF FIRE @20/1 With BetOnline
Trainer: Todd Pletcher
Jockey: John R Velazquez
Wins: 1
Form: 1-3-5-2-2-2-11-2

Another from the powerful Pletcher barn and will have bundles of experience in the saddle with the 3-time winner of the race – John R. Velazquez riding. However, last seen running second in the Wilton Stakes at Saratoga last time and would need more on that. Does sport the first-time blinkers though.

3. GERRYMANDER @ 7/2 With BetOnline
Trainer: Chad Brown
Jockey: Joel Rosario
Wins: 3
Form: 2-1-2-1-6-1

From the Chad Brown yard that won this prize in 2019 and looks a live alternative to Nest and Secret Oath in the race. Improving 3 year-old that was a tidy winner at Belmont on Jun 25 (3 lengths) and looks the sort to improve further for the step up in trip.

4. NEST @ 1/2 With BetOnline
Trainer: Todd Pletcher
Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr
Wins: 5
Form: 1-3-1-1-1-2-2-1

The likely favorite and the clear one to beat after her 12 1/2 length romp in the Coaching Club American Oaks last time out. Had Secret Oath well back in the straight that day and more of the same looks on the cards for this Pletcher runner that will be bidding to give the yard their fourth win in the race.

5. NOSTALGIC @ 12/1 With BetOnline
Trainer: William Mott
Jockey: Jose L Ortiz
Wins: 3
Form: 1-4-9-1-1-10-3

Mott and Ortiz teamed-up to win this race in 2017 and are back for more. But this filly was just over 15 lengths adrift of Nest last time out so had a lot of ground to make up.

6. SHE’S KEEN @ 30/1 With BetOnline
Trainer: George R Arnold II
Jockey: Jose Lezcano
Wins: 1
Form: 6-4-5-3-1

Jockey Jose Lezcano won this race in 2011 so knows what’s needed. But this filly is the likely outsider here despite winning well at the track last time out. This is a big step up in class from a Maiden Special Weight.

7. SECRET OATH @ 4/1 With BetOnline
Trainer: Wayne D Lukas
Jockey: Luis Saez
Wins: 5
Form: 3-1-5-1-1-1-3-1-4-2

2020 Kentucky Oaks winner that will be one of the main threats to Nest. Beat Nest in that Churchill Downs race earlier this season, but was firmly put in his place last time in the Coaching Club American Oaks – going down by just over 12 lengths. Many felt that wasn’t her true running so if able to bounce back can be expected to get closer this time.

Note: Odds are subject to change

Alabama Stakes The 10-Year Trends To Note

  • 10/10 – Returned 9/1 or shorter in the betting
  • 7/10 – Won between gates 4 and 7
  • 6/10 – Winning favorites
  • 3/10 – Won by trainer Todd Pletcher
  • 3/10 – Ridden by Jose L Ortiz
  • 1/10 – Winners from gate 1

Alabama Stakes Facts and Figures

  • Fastest Time: 2:00.80 Go For Wand (1990)
  • Most Trainer Wins: 8, Sunny Jim Fitzsimmons (1924, 1928, 1942, 1944, 1946, 1950, 1953, 1959)
  • Most Jockey Wins: 5 – Jorge Velazquez (1972, 1973, 1977, 1984, 1987); Jerry D. Bailey (1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2005); Mike E. Smith (1993, 1994, 1995, 2000, 2016)

Alabama Stakes Recent Winners

  • 2021 – MALTHAAT (11/20 fav)
  • 2020 – SWISS SKYDIVER (23/20 fav)
  • 2019 – DUNBAR (7/4 fav)
  • 2018 – ESKIMO KISSES (9/1)
  • 2017 – ELATE (43/10)
  • 2016 – SONGBIRD (1/5 fav)
  • 2015 – EMBELLISH THE LACE (6/1)
  • 2014 – STOPCHARGINGMARIA (Evs fav)
  • 2013 – PRINCESS OF SYLMAR (1/2 fav)
  • 2012 – QUESTING (11/5)

Alabama Stakes– Watch The 2021 Running Again

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