• ‘Trail’ Mix Amid Meadowlands Marquee

    POSTED May 1, 2013

    With all horseracing eyes on The Kentucky Derby, the Grand Circuit’s focused stakes can only take co-starring roles. Still, this is our official start of the big season, including the launch of our exclusive information center, the Hambletonian Trail blog, where we provide analysis and picks for stakes involving Hambletonian and Hambletonian Oaks eligibles.

    This blog will share its information with the “Trail” blog, so please bookmark them both or simply follow the link to be sure you are informed about great betting opportunities for the glamour boy and girl trotters of 2013 in all of the events leading to the classic on the first Saturday in August. Again this year, TwinSpires and the Hambletonian Society bring you the extended information.

    For the first time this season, TwinSpires’ exclusive harness horses to watch (H2W) list continues into the Grand Circuit season by popular demand.

    As well, the TwinSpires’ 10-percent bonuses for winning the Pick 4 at Woodbine on Saturday nights continue. And now, get the same deal with Pick 4s at Hoosier Park throughout the harness meet, and double points plus (click here).

    Check out the details for Woodbine here.

    Check out the Hoosier details here.

    Read about the Dexter Cupand Lady Suffolk stakes at the Trail blog. Here, we will cover the Grand Circuit Simpson Stakes for soph-colt pacers, as well as the “Maturity,” all at the Meadowlands, as well as we take a look at the Van Rose Memorial from Pocono Downs.

    Trot Stars Revisited

    Open trotters battle in the inaugural edition of the $100,000 Meadowlands Maturity, featuring some popular names from 2012 that fit the conditions for this four-year-old event.  

    A trio of last year’s Hambo contenders, Guccio, Little Brown Fox and Uncle Peter, are here for the Jimmy Takter stable and once again they have to contend with the pacing-bred Googoo Gaagaa, who defeated them easily outside of the Hambo (which he could not race in, of course, since his sire is a pacer). Among the others in last season’s Trail mix are Solvato, Magic Tonight, Another Amaretto and My Mvp. Harbor Point and Modern Family join the fray.  

    How this group presents itself as four-year-olds is still a mystery, since so much can change from a sophomore season to the next division, which is, overall, a mixed brew of ages. There will be few four-year-old-only events, so a lot is up in the air for this group.  

    “Googoo” certainly took it easy with his qualifiers, and that may not have been the intention, according to trainer Richard Hans. This debut is important for the horse that had a severe breaking problem last season, which was the cause of most races he lost. As well, he wasn’t the trotter at season’s end that he was from the start.  

    Perhaps Little Brown Fox can debut with sparks? He is still a small horse and if his gait is as smooth as it was at three he could be a terror against four-year-olds and up. We still feel that had he not ruined his Hambletonian elim he was the best of that division and should have gone all the way. 

    The buzz horse is Daryl Bier’s Modern Family. Modern Family won his first four starts this season for his new teacher, Bier, including a 1:54.1 romp in a winter series at the Meadowlands.  Bier purchased Modern Family, taking over from Tony Alagna, who sends My Mvp to his first challenge at four in this event.

    Simpson Stakes

    The glamour-boy pacers peek through the program at the Meadowlands with the Grand Circuit’s first Simpson Stakes of the season, worth $39,615. In essence, this is race poses a bit of a guessing game but is important to watch for the sake of future events in the division. Duel In The Sun is last year’s best earning frosh of these seven, with Johny Rock close to him on the list but both are deep in the top-50 earners, while the other five here are firmly untested.   

    We are giving a good outside shot to Kenzie’s Beach Boy for trainer Joe Holloway. The conditioner came to fame for his work with the colt’s sire, Jenna’s Beach Boy, who was a dynamic pacer and three-time winner of a Breeders Crown event. Joe has already taken this guy to the post nine times, winning three, placing once and showing once. Since the two aforementioned top earners are making their debut, let’s bank on the fact that even if they wind up better in the long run, “Kenzie” gets the nod while they are still tuning up in their soph debuts.   

    War Of The ‘Rose’

    While the Run For The Roses dominates the thoroughbred world, the $50,000 Van Rose Memorial Invitational at Pocono Downs on May 4 brings together some of the sport’s top pacing free-for-allers. Among them is the popular star Golden Receiver, already six for seven this season, with a superior speed edge, especially with three turns instead of the two he has made his mark upon. From post 2 he will be very hard to dismiss.   

    Versado will be gunning for him, though, and could be his downfall if you are suspecting an all-out duel. The biggest bargain, then, could be Fred And Ginger, who has faced the big “Gold” many times and is a veteran of this class. Should a duel surface, there could be a triple of some worth with Gold, “Fred” and Shoobee’s Place, who should do most of his pacing on the inside in those late steps that can be devoured on this track.

    H2W Legend

    Review our choices and follow the wagering at the prescribed track to decide how you will use the information.

    The horses’ names are listed beneath the name of the track after the date they will be racing. The race in which they are entered (R and race number) follows. If a + is in front of a horse’s name it means that horse is appearing on the list for the second (and last time) because it failed to win the first time it appeared.    

    An “ae” signals the horse is entered but on the also-eligible list (so it might not get into the race). Multi-horses may be listed in the same race.   

    Horses from previous lists that are not racing have a NR after the name on a separate line from dated entries. 

    Wagering on any of the H2W listed horses is based on your own judgment. Your handicapping skills should include decisions to wager to win, place, show or in exotics. If you have any questions about the H2W list, send them to us through the TwinSpires blog channel.


    5/3/13 +Upandover Hanover R2; Bailys Magic R6; +Pw Tootsie R7; +Jk Abigezunt R9
    5/4/13, +Quick Change Artist R13
    Pacific Prince NR; Fifty Two Finn NR; Naked News NR

    Cal Expo
    5/3/13, +Ra Ra Steven R3; +Flash’s Camilla R8; +Loco For Cocoa R11
    5/4/13, +Stiletosilverheels R2
    Amazin Dot NR; Eggwhite Inmy Beer NR  

    5/3/13, +Red Star Scammer R5

    5/4/13, Padre Manuel R1; Ironstone Wiz R2; Terrys Star Dragon R10; +Magnum Mike R10; +Newsam R11; +Best Magic R14
    Pacey Deucey NR

    5/3/13, +Regil Millionaire ae R3;+Flashy R4;+ER Sister R5; Richerthanrayno R7; Velocity Vespa R10; +Holy Chip R12; +Lordy Gordy R13
    Keep On Flirtin NR 

    5/2/13, +Racy Betty R2; Red Rufus R3; +Swimsuit Model R4;
    5/3/13,  Bench’s Betty R2; +Dollys Joy R4; +Cagney Munster R5; +Rain Dance Maggy R7
    Black Blitz NR 

    5/2/13, Rock N Jam R4; Summer Party R10
    5/3/13, Fox Calley Bobbijo ae R2; Huga Yankee as R4; +Catch The Rapids R6; +Shabalabandingdong R7; +Pin Stripes R8; +Stryker R9; Prime Escape R9
    Silky Salt Shaker NR

    5/1/13, +Blue Time Ice Lady R2; +Hurricane Hanna R2; +Arion R2; +Towner’s Great Lady R4;+Some Little Star R13; Pair Of Eyes R13
    Erikadikete NR; Attack Of The Town NR

    5/4/13, +Automatic Teller R2; +Delco Rocknroll R12

    5/4/13, Wingull R4; +Avantage R6; +Kennairnmachmagic R9
    Joltin Duel NR; T’s Electric NR

    5/4/13, Rosie L R6; Game Madison R6; Taffy Towne R8
    5/5/13, Vyce R5; G Rod R6;

    5/4/13, Haggin Oaks R7

    5/3/13, Southwest R10 
    5/4/13, Winbak Meadow R1; +Tiger Would Too R2; Stettin Hanover R5; +Fish Tales R11
    Worldly Domination NR

    Ray Cotolo contributed to this edition.

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    What is the maximum age of the horse for such racing? I took part in college rodeo and now my horse is really old and I cannot perform so well there. So I thought about horseracing after graduation. Aren't there any limitations?

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