• Autumn’s Kentucky Crusade

    POSTED Sep 28, 2011
    This week the Grand Circuit lauches its traditional two-week autumn stay at Lexington, Kentucky’s Red Mile. Both weeks highlight top events, including the Oct. 2 Kentucky Futurity for glamour-boy trotters. Betting that program through TwinSpires gets you 10X points.  

    Also at The Red Mile are Bluegrass Stakes and Allerage Stakes for the young and the elders still standing in their divisions as October opens its jaws.  

    All the “money” horses that are Breeders Crown-eligibles want to thrive in Lexington before their connections decide on dropping them in the box for the “Crown” elims. We are covering all the division activity here and in our exclusive blog, Breeders Crown Countdown. The results about eligibles for the season-ending championships will be available regularly at the Hambletonian Society website’s area for the Crown.  

    You can read some exclusive Red Mile handicapping analysis at the Countdown page, too. Scroll to read stories on Crown activity, including races, picks and plays.  

    Bluegrass Guys And Gals


    Bluegrass Stakes for freshmen highlight the Friday, Sept. 30 program at the Red Mile.  

    There are four miles including fields of frosh-colt trotters. The first presents the dynamo Delano and calls for a pass. The second looks like a shot for Ray Schnittker’s Muscolo, who could be a wire-to-wire winner here at a decent price over One In A Million and Big Chocolate. Next, Greg Peck, the brains behind Muscle Hill, has a 2012 hopeful in From Above and he looks like he has what it takes to go fast, with a two-of-three win column so far. Then we will take another shot with Melt In Your Mouth, who was dull in Canada though handed a tough trip.  

    As for the filly pacers, these green gals have two splits and one invites American Jewel to win her eighth straight, so call it a pass since she can do it. However, in the other split, the outside Destiny’s Chance will possibly be ignored at the windows and that would be too tempting to pass. Ron Burke has her tight now.  

    Saturday, Oct. 2’s Bluegrasses are for frosh-colt pacers and soph-filly pacers and the Allerage Stakes present older trotters and pacers.  

    The frosh pacers’ first Bluegrass division could be a fine theater for Hillbilly Hanover. After winning a Keystone Classics at the Meadows, he is the “now” horse and a price could accompany his 8-hole start considering the popularity of the 4, 5 and 6 horses. The same situation surfaces in the second division. Dick Mctracy also scored big in Pennsylvania and also gets post 8 and has to face some heavy favorites. In the third round, Special Blend could show some sizzling speed against these, while in the fourth chapter, Verdad could be overlooked by the general public.  

    The single mile for Bluegrass filly pacers could be quite a shuffle show. There is speed all over this field and that could hand the race over to Ace Of Pace. The lightly raced gal should be all out here, strategically placed and quite the price.  

    The Allerage pacers event is a star-studded field of 10. The crowd, however, will most likely pour the money on We Will See, fresh off his record race—the fastest ever at Pocono Downs. Any number of scenarios can be expected here but we kind of like the speed-burning drama that finds the winner the last pacer standing. That could mean Bettor Sweet or a late splash from Foiled Again, who is versatile enough to catch speed as well as command it.  

    The Allerage trotters are the best around, with San Pail versus Arch Madness the expected dangers. Could Lucky Jim control the fractions? He has been flat lately and offering some fine prices. I would not dismiss an upset on this oval by a great horse that has been his own worst enemy.  

    Back To The ‘Futurity’


    At press time the Oct. 2 Kentucky Futurity fields have not been drawn. This event is the only one for glamour-boy trotters that is executed in heats on the same program. There will probably by two elim-heats of at least seven if we are lucky, since a lot of trainers don’t want to put their horses through the stress of two and possibly three miles of racing on one day.

    Check the Countdown blog for a special “Futurity” report before Sunday, Oct. 2.   

    Cal Exotic


    Oct. 1’s no-takeout late Pick 4 at Cal Expo is a target again this week.  

    Leg 1
    Awesome Deal N (9) dueled for the lead early and kept afloat well to finish third. He is a good single in this poor group.  

    Leg 2
    Long Last Look (6) was beaten soundly from post 9 last out. This guy has a history of winning like he can read the toteboard, coming off of poor trips and scoring at decent prices. Big Guy Two Win (9) was hung for three calls and well bet but he couldn’t sustain the trip.  

    Leg 3
    Whoop And Shout (1) was the beaten favorite last week, coming in second. You Go Shirl (8) managed to weave a trip and pick up third money at 51-1.  

    Leg 4
    Mow Em Down (1) is fresh and should prosper from the inside start. The Future (7) likes this track and could be sharp in his return to the big mile.  

    The ticket: 9/6,9/1,8/1,7  

    Remember to play any of the above to win, also, if you feel the win price offered is an overlay.  

     (Ray Cotolo assisted in this edition.)
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