Dunbar Road stands out in Mother Goose

The Grade II, $250,000 Mother Goose Stakes is the highlight of Belmont Park’s nine-race Saturday program. Six three-year-old fillies, including the highly-promising DUNBAR ROAD, will compete in this prestigious 1 1/16th-mile event. Post time for the Mother Goose, Race 8 on the day at Belmont, is 5:18 p.m. ET.

#1 DUNBAR ROAD (4-5, morning-line favorite) made an instant impression in her maiden score at Gulfstream, winning by over eight lengths at first asking for trainer Chad Brown. She ran in the Gulfstream Park Oaks next, and she nearly overcame a slow start and three-wide trip to win. Instead, DUNBAR ROAD settled for second beaten just a half-length. After scratching as an AE in the Kentucky Oaks, the Quality Road filly was brought back less than a month later in a Belmont allowance, where she crushed four overmatched foes by five-plus lengths. She’s clearly the fastest horse in the field, so it wouldn’t be surprising if Jose Ortiz sends her to the lead from the rail post in order to avoid trouble. DUNBAR ROAD looms a very short-priced winner.

#6 WINGS OF DAWN (5-1) is a wild-card in the Mother Goose having never run on conventional dirt. The Mark Casse trainee was awful in two turf starts at Gulfstream over the winter before shipping up to Woodbine. There she was able to break her maiden before beating allowance foes by 4 1/2-lengths in her most recent outing. WINGS OF DAWN has a sharp four-furlong drill at Belmont under her belt and lures Dylan Davis.

#2 CLASSIC FIT (8-1) is 3-for-4 lifetime but hasn’t been seen since taking Gulfstream’s Hut Hut Stakes last December. An issue may have been discovered in her training at Tampa, as she returns with Lasix added. Michael Stidham has CLASSIC FIT working steadily for her return and names meet-leading jockey Jose Lezcano to ride.

The play: $10 exacta 1/6, $5 exacta 1/2 ($15)

Follow me on Twitter: @itsgood2beking