Firenze Fire could deliver vintage effort in Vosburgh

The Grade II, $150,000 Vosburgh Stakes is the Saturday feature at Belmont Park. The six-furlong sprint, carrying “Win and You’re In” status for November’s Breeders’ Cup Sprint, drew an accomplished field of six. Post time for the Vosburgh, Race 9 on a 10-race card, is 5:14 p.m. ET.

#5 FIRENZE FIRE (7-2) could get overlooked in the Vosburgh off a dismal 11th-place finish in the Forego at Saratoga. However, that was over a sloppy track, as was his poor effort in Belmont’s Grade I Carter earlier this year. FIRENZE FIRE also ran off-the-board in the Grade I Vanderbilt two-back, but the last time he was at Belmont, he looked like his old self in a convincing Grade II True North victory. He’s now 7-4-1-0 all-time over this course. FIRENZE FIRE drilled a bullet to prep for the Vosburgh and faces no world-beaters under Jose Lezcano. His morning-line odds represent solid value.

#2 FUNNY GUY (5-2) posted two strong state-bred stakes victories in a row before missing the money in the Forego. He drops in class a bit this Saturday and drilled a bullet in preparation for this. The speed figures say FUNNY GUY is capable of competing with these, and Joel Rosario maintains the assignment. The lone knock might be the distance, as the late-running FUNNY GUY has never raced this short.

#6 ENGAGE (2-1, morning-line favorite) moves up in the event of a scratch. He hasn’t been seen since running a respectable fourth in the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Sprint. The layoff won’t do the Grade II Phoenix winner any favors, but ENGAGE is not one bettors should take lightly with trainer Steve Asmussen and jockey Jose Ortiz in his corner.

The play: $10 win 5

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