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Uncle Mo Eyes Belmont Success


There is some serious action set to unfold this Saturday at Belmont Park just outside of New York City as a multitude of Grade 1 contests will be run with eyes firmly fixed on the November 3 and 4 Breeders' Cup. The three-year-old division in America has been described by a range of terms from “underwhelming” all the way to “competitive”.


No genuine stand-out has emerged this year and many have fallen by the wayside just as their success was looking its most assured. Think of Uncle Mo pulling out of the Kentucky Derby, Animal Kingdom just missing in the Preakness and then avoiding catastrophe in the Belmont Stakes. To a lesser extent, To Honor And Serve failed to fire in his big runs this year and then missed the entire Triple Crown. Tapizar dominated the Sham and then was retired, Archarcharch was injured in the Derby after coming into the contest as one of the most widely-vaunted contenders.

Yet now it seems that some of them are actually coming back and producing the goods. Despite throwing a shoe and just missing by nostril back in August, Uncle Mo is set for another run at nearly the highest level. He runs in the Grade 2 Kelso Handicap at Belmont and Mike Repole's eyeing dominance in this race as he looks set to unleash Travers Winner (and prototypical late-bloomer) Stay Thirsty as well.

Uncle Mo announced he was back in sharp form by turning in a bullet work 1/79 at Belmont this morning with conditioner Todd Pletcher even admitting “That was faster than I wanted to go. It's not what we set out to do, but I think it's an indication of how well he's doing at the moment.”

Since disappointing in the King's Bishop despite being very unlucky, Uncle Mo has gotten better by the day and this latest work will please the ambitious Repole – who will surely point Mo towards the Classic if he can conquer the Kelso.

Many ante post markets have Uncle Mo, a three-year-old son of Indian Charlie, priced as one of the major contenders for the $5,000,000 contest at Churchill Downs. Look for him in the neighborhood of around 7/1 next to European shipper Await The Dawn but just a shade back from co-favourites Stay Thirsty and Tizway.

To Honor And Serve is now on the map as well with a 10/1 listing making him a plausible contender.  

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