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2016 personal ensign stakes preview entries and odds


The Grade 1 Personal Ensign Stakes will be run this Saturday, August 27 at Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, New York. Fillies and mares three years old and upward will be after the winner's share of the $750,000 purse when they take to Saratoga's dirt track and race 1 1/8 miles.

A short but quality field of just five will line up in the Personal Ensign Stakes - race 6 on Saratoga's stacked Saturday card. Post time is 2:23 PM. Let's take a look into the past performances of all five combatants for this competitive Grade 1 stakes.

2016 Personal Ensign Stakes Race Preview at Saratoga Race Course

Curalina 9-5 - Todd Pletcher trained filly has been very good in her 11 career starts - six wins, two seconds and two third place finishes. She debuted in July, 2014 and finished second and went on to four straight wins - the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks July 26, the Grade 1 Acorn Stakes at Belmont Park June 6, an Allowance Optional Claiming score by 8 1/4 lengths May 1 at Churchill Downs and a maiden score in March. Last time out was another win - in the Grade 3 Shuvee Handicap 9 1/4 lengths on this track July 31 after a disappointing fourth in the Grade 1 Ogden Phipps Stakes at Belmont Park June 11 and a win in the Grade 1 La Troienne Stakes by 7 1/4 lengths at Churchill Downs May 6. She also had a respectable third behind Stopchargingmaria in the Breeders' Cup Distaff, a second in the Grade 1 Beldame Stakes at Belmont Park September 26 and a third in the Grade 1 Alabama Stakes at Saratoga August 22. Curalina has been in every race so far and hopes to be again Saturday. John Velazquez has been tabbed to ride the morning line favorite from gate 2.

Cavorting 2-1 - has 12 career starts with seven wins, a second and a third place finish. She enters on a tidy two race win streak - the $1 million Grade 1 Ogden Phipps Stakes last time out at Belmont Park June 11 and by five lengths in the Grade 2 Ruffian Stakes on that track May 14. The wins followed a respectable runner-up finish in the Grade 3 Distaff Handicap at Aqueduct April 17, an OK third in the Grade 1 La Brea Stakes at Santa Anita back on December 26 and a somewhat disappointing fourth as favorite in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint (from an undesirable post 14). She had a nice three race win streak last year as well - the Grade 2 Prioress Stakes at Saratoga September 16, the Grade 1 Test Stakes August 8 (both on this track) and the minor Jersey Girl Stakes June 5 at Belmont Park. Cavorting had been a tad up and down but has placed in seven of her last eight starts overall ahead of this weekend. She looks for her third straight graded stakes score Saturday when she departs from gate 6 with Javier Castellano guiding the 123 pound co-highweight and morning line second choice.

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Forever Unbridled 7-2 - Dallas Stewart trained filly has four wins, three seconds and two third place finishes in 11 career starts. She enters off an OK second to Cavorting in the Grade 1 Ogden Phipps Stakes at Belmont Park June 11 after a three race win streak - the Grade 1 Apple Blossom Stakes at Oaklawn Park April 15, the Grade 3 Houston Ladies Classic January 30 and the Grade 3 Comely Stakes at Aqueduct November 28. Before that was a fifth in the Grade 2 Raven Run Stakes in October, an ugly eleventh in the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks May 1 and consecutive third place finishes - the Grade 2 Fair Grounds Oaks March 28 and the Grade 3 Rachel Alexandra Stakes in February. Forever Unbridled has been looked very good in her last four starts overall and hopes to be in the mix again Saturday. Joel Rosario rides the morning line third choice from post 3.

I'm a Chatterbox 4-1 - six time stakes winner and Larry Jones trained filly has seven wins, three seconds and two third place finishes in 13 career starts - she was second to Stellar Wind in last year's Eclipse Award voting. She enters on a nice two race win streak - the Grade 1 Delaware Handicap last time out July 16 and the minor $100,000 Obeah Stakes by 8 1/2 lengths also at Delaware Park June 11. Those wins followed a good second in the Grade 3 Doubledogdare Stakes at Keeneland in April, a somewhat disappointing eighth in the Breeders' Cup Distaff, a good win in the Grade 1 Cotillion Stakes at Parx September 19 and consecutive seconds - behind Curalina after being DQ'd for interference in the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks July 26 and in the Grade 1 Alabama Stakes at Saratoga August 22. She also had an OK third in the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks last May 1 and a three race win streak to start 2015- all stakes races and all at Fair Grounds. I'm a Chatterbox has been in some top company and has fared very well for the most part. She will leave from the railed hoping to make it three straight wins with Florent Geroux in the saddle of the other 123 pound co-highweight.

Paid Up Subscriber 10-1 - lightly raced Albert Stall trained filly has four wins, a second and a third place finish in eight career starts. She arrives off a second place finish to I'm A Chatterbox in the Grade 1 Delaware Handicap July 16 and a nice two race win streak - the Grade 2 Fleur de Lis Handicap in her first start around two turns June 18 and an Allowance Optional Claiming May 6 - both at Churchill Downs. Those results followed a third in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Keeneland April 8, a disappointing ninth in the Grade 2 Raven Run Stakes in October and a fourth in the Grade 2 Prioress Stakes in September. Paid Up Subscriber was OK before finding a groove in her last three starts. Ricardo Santana has been tabbed with keeping an impressive roll going from gate 4 Saturday.

The editors premier league betting battle 201617 round 23




Mike Norman

Back Burnley @ [3.0] to beat Leicester

Tuesday, 19:45

Burnley v Leicester was the first game I looked at from the midweek fixtures, and seeing the home side priced at [3.0] to win meant I had to look no further for my wager.

How the Foxes are favourites to win at Turf Moor is a complete mystery. Claudio Ranieri's men are yet to win away from home in the league this season, they have a -16 goal difference on their travels, and they've scored just once in their last five Premier League outings.

Yet somehow Leicester are favourites to win against a team that have been sensational on home soil. The Clarets have won 75% of their league matches in front of their own fans, have progressed to the fifth round of the FA Cup thanks to two more home wins, and they're currently on a run of six consecutive victories at Turf Moor, the last three without conceding a single goal.

For some reason - a bit like Leicester last term - the layers have been extremely slow to catch up with Burnley's phenomenal home record and while Sean Dyche's men keep winning then I'm happy to keep backing them.

Mike Norman 2016-17 P/L: +£49.90


Joe Dyer

Back Over 2.5 Goals @ [2.08] in Stoke v Everton

Wednesday, 20:00

I've enjoyed a decent run of results in the battle and I'd love to keep the winning form going but I'm afraid I go into this round with a merely tentative selection.

Stoke's home game with Everton features two of the Premier League's better sides with the in-form visitors two places above the hosts. I think that makes it a competitive fixture and with the pair pushing for high Premier League finishes both will be keen to get the three points.

While Everton have tightened up at the back in recent weeks, I prefer both teams' attacks to their defences and I think this has every chance of breaching the over 2.5 mark.

So, at [2.08] to back, that'll have do for my 23rd bet of the battle.

Joe Dyer 2016-17 P/L: +£31.65


Dan Thomas

Back Chelsea -1 v Liverpool at 11/2

Tuesday, 20:00

Live on Sky Sports 1

Completely agree with Mike about Burnley's price against Leicester - and I am equally surprised about Chelsea's price at struggling Liverpool.

As Mike wrote over the weekend, Liverpool have had a dreadful 2017 so far, with just one win in seven games (against Plymouth) and defeats to Wolves, Swansea and Southampton as well as a disappointing draw at relegation threatened Sunderland.

They're facing a Chelsea team who have won an incredible 14 games in their last 15, only being beaten by a red hot Tottenham - and yet the market has the hosts at [2.64] favourites with the Blues bigger than 2/1.

That looks a stonking price for Antonio Conte's men but, given I'm in a terrible hole in the Battle, I'm going to push the boat out and back them on the handicap at a huge 11/2 on the Sportsbook.

Dan Thomas 2016-17 P/L: -£102.50


Luke Moore

Back Swansea to beat Southampton at [3.4]

Tuesday, 19:45

While my Premier League weekly column is going well (+18pts currently), my P/L in the battle this season is utterly atrocious and I'm now faced with two options:

1. Try to slowly and steadily pick up profit with reasonably-priced winners between now and the end of the season

or

2. Shoot for the moon with some big prices, like Dan up there is doing.

For now I'm going to keep looking for value until things get really desperate, and I think I've found a bit on offer at the Liberty Stadium on Tuesday night. Paul Clement is a good coach and he's got his Swansea team looking a lot more solid and confident since he took over, something that was on display during their win at Anfield and for the first portion of their game against Arsenal.

Southampton looked awful against Arsenal in the cup and their away record isn't much to write home about either. I'll take a confident Swans at a big price.

Luke Moore 2016-17 P/L: -£105.80


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