• Pocono’s Powerhouse Features

    POSTED Jun 19, 2013

    Pocono Downs shines with features on Sun Stakes Saturday, June 22,with eliminations for finals at the Pennsylvania oval next week, including a big event on the Hambletonian Trail which you can read about on the excluscive blog.

    Soph-colt pacers go in elims for the Max Hempt and the fillies ride for spots in the sister event, the James Lynch. Older pacers, a great bunch of stalwarts, battle in Ben Franklin elims and the soph trotters on the Hambo Trail set up the fields for the Earl Beale, Jr.

    Our exclusive harness horses to watch (H2W) list from tracks around North America isn’t quite as bountiful as it was during the winter but those on the list need be taken seriously in their various outings.

    TwinSpires offers special bonuses for Hoosier Park throughout the harness meet. Check out the Hoosier details here.

    Pacers To The ‘Max’

    Next week’s Max Hempt Memorial for glamour-boy pacers at Pocono will try to shuffle the deck of division contenders while, most likely, still have to deal with Captaintreacherous (photo above). In the third of three elims this June 22, the “Captain” takes on foes that have failed to loom dangerous so far. Rockin Amadeus, who beat Captain with a soft trip in the Breeders Crown at two, has returned without force and from post 8 seems less a threat than any others in this field. The morning line on Captain is 2-1? Take a deep breath, hope for such a miracle and wager.

    In the first elim Johny Rock is bound to make more noise than he did trying for the bigger bucks and Lonewolf Currier is certainly sharp now but Emeritus Maximus is the most likely value contender. He just won at Pocono and deserves a shot stepping up against a few foes he has beaten earlier, when they were hammering out their soph starts.

    In the second elim, Tony Alagna’s Wake Up Peter, who was touted up the kazoo against Captain in the North America Cup, still hasn’t lived up to all the hype. In the “Cup” he got Team Alagna third money on top of first money (with Captain). But here you have a shot at a big price, since Ultimate Beachboy will go off at odds far larger than his chances. With driver George Napolitano, a Pocono mainstay, replaced by Andy McCarthy, added to the “Peter” principal, “Beachboy” has a good shot at making the final with a win here. He is coming off of a great race at Philadelphia and in the perfect place at Pocono (post 5) to produce a major crush.

    The top three finishers from each elimination advance to the $500,000 final.

     ‘Lynch’ Mob

    With the two probable choices on the outside, odds for Jerseylicious may be at a bargain level as a low-priced overlay. She certainly seems to be ready to pop a big mile this time around in the first James Lynch elim.

    In elim two it is harder than in the Fan Hanover to pass I Luv The Nitelife. She defined awesome in that affair and comes here with fire in her belly. Even the local success of Somwhereovrarainbow doesn’t seem to be much of a scare.

    The top four finishers from each elim, plus the fastest fifth-place finisher, advance to the $300,000 final.

    Big ‘Ben’

    The older pacing guys are at it again, this time eliminating for next week’s Ben Franklin final. There are three elims, so a herd of big guys have joined in the battle, with the top three finishers in each elim meeting for the $500,000 final.

    In elim one it would be foolish to dismiss Golden Receiver, though his recent two efforts are dull, at best. He returns to the scene of his marvelous win in May and there is no reason to think he won’t male major noise. But near his morning line, 7-2, he is truly golden, especially with Betterthancheddar having to once again take the long route around more than two turns.

    Round two is tough, with cases for at least four to take the cake. Suffice it to say that the odds should make up your mind but here are the three that should make it to the final—Razzle Dazzle, Fred And Ginger and Heston Blue Chip. That’s right, we toss out Sweet Lou here. Of those three, you may want to back “Fred” again, as his last race was marred by a stressful trip and he is still in tip top form and he may get the bargain position in the betting of that trio.

    Now everyone loves Pet Rock after his win last week. And everyone still admires Bolt The Duer and Foiled Again is still the richest of them all. But we are going to find value and back Hurrikane Kingcole. He is Bolt The Duer’s best friend because he sets up that one’s miles often, providing suck-up cover. But here the “Hurrikane” may not tire as easily. In fact, he may get some cover if “Foiled” is beginning to worry about his season (he hasn’t won since April).

    H2W Legend

    Review our choices and follow the wagering at the prescribed track to decide how you will use the information. The list has shortened as the stakes season ensues but still offers the best possible contenders we have judged from reviewing races.

    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 this week will no longer appear until they are confirmed in a race.

    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.   

    H2W 

    Buffalo
    6/22/13, Cheyenne Cam R1; Win A New Day R5; Gerald N Sam R9; Fantasypan R10; Up Front Lady Gray R11; Creating A Dream R12; +So Over R13

    Maywood
    6/21/13, Too Tall Tamarac R2; Really Lucky R4; Five Cougars A R8; Mystical Walter R9; Bluebird Muffler R14

    Northfield
    6/22/13, Casimir Luckynutz R1; Elvis Returns R2; Timer R3; Lost Photo R5; Mj’s Victory R10; Majestic Duke R11; Nisty’s Dignity R13; His Eminence R14   

    Pompano
    6/22/13,+Bolero Topgun R10; +Camp Counselor R10  

    Running Aces
    6/22/13, +Dolly Howard R1; Place At The Beach R2; +Ben N Al R3; Parthenon R4; High Bet Hanover R5; Furious Five R5; Ty Top R8; Hammers Cam R9

    Saratoga
    6/22/13, Hazel Nut R2; Jds Memory R2; Vodkas Terror R3; Might Art ae R6; Pop Z Pop R7; Ideal Wizard R8; Daydreamin Lynx R8; Money Twitch A R9

    Scarborough
    6/21/13, +Keystone Howie R 9; 
    6/22/13, +Scootin Keefe ae R7; Lislea Bonita R7

    Scioto
    6/21/13, Ee Bay ae R11
    6/22/13, +Lucky Lime R5; Show Topper R6; +Stand Tall R13

    Ray Cotolo contributed to this edition.
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