• North America Cup Headlines Huge Stakes Program; Captaintreacherous Returns

    POSTED Jun 11, 2014
    The $1-million Pepsi North America Cup features a glimpse of the glamour-boy division’s best pacers. It is the biggest purse for the group all season but it may or may not be the showcase of the top colt. After the elims last week we were left with this field, arguably the best of those three elims. Historically, the “Cup” is a chaotic event that can produce many one-hit wonders, as well as there are times the resolute champion colt doesn’t make it to the final (vis a vis Western Vintage in this edition). Our horse-by-horse analysis is a click and a scroll away.

    Before the Cup, there is the inaugural $100,000 Meadowlands Maturity, open to all four-year-old pacers but featuring one solid star—Captaintreacherous. Two horses in this field are the only to defeat him in 2013. Most in the field of these have already raced. Add to that the swarm of “mutineers” that have provided so many overlays on one of the sport’s most brilliant stars at two and three and are bound to resurface for this, plus, the seasonal debut of Captaintreacherous launching from post 10 makes this a sullied event.

    The Mohawk Saturday night program is strewn with high-profile events and exotic wagering and we have our fingers on the pulse of it all below. The multi-race exotic in focus is Race 7 through Race 10, the All Stakes Pick 4, with a $100,000 (Canadian) guarantee. Those stakes, in order, are the Roses Are Red, Mohawk Gold Cup, Fan Hanover and North America Cup, all covered below, along with suggested horses for the other two Pick 4 sets that evening.

    More from the Mohawk evening and some other soph-colt stakes events are handled on our sister blog, the Hambletonian Trail.

    Weekdays are harness plentiful, too, check out the TwinSpires-Hoosier perks for players. Tuesdays, wager all you want and earn 10 TSC Elite Points per dollar bet. Click here for details. Every Thursday night, there is a 20-percent bonus on hitting the Pick 4 starting at Race 3. Click here for details. And the ongoing 10-percent Pick-4 bonus every racing night on Pick-4 hits continues through the meet. Click here for details.

    Follow @FrankCotolo and @TwinSpires on Twitter to get any and all late-breaking information on racing events and betting challenges that transpire between the publication of the two TwinSpires harness racing blogs.

    Maturity Mayhem

    Over and over again last season, the contingent of anti-Captaintreacherous bettors refused to give him his due in the win pools, so he went off at remarkable odds—for a colt so combatant in victory. What you may find in the Meadowlands Maturity on Friday, June 13, is that group counting on every element that may be able to thwart every other colt. But if Captaintreacherous is anywhere near the performer he was in 2013, those mutineers will be looking for excuses again while “treacherous” wins as a strong overlay.

    There is a knock or two on any one of the other nine in this field in general; add to that the treacherous qualifier—or should we call it a “quali-fire”?—and the race goes to the swift, talented and charismatic—which all describe Captaintreacherous. Watch for the overlay, a mere even-money send-off is worth it. Or just watch and enjoy.

    The Cup  .

    Here is the field for the Cup, in post position order, with individual comments and a summary at their end.

    Beat The Drum
    Only a skewed trip by the top colts in this field gives Beat The Drum a shot at winning. He has a decent late kick but only got into the final having saved some ground and finding some room passing tired ones.

    The fiery mile produced in his elim will impress the speed-handicapping brigade but it may be his worse enemy in the long run. In fact, in his elim win, Sometimes Said had the more difficult mile, finishing second the hard way, without clearing the top. This guy reminds me of a few colts trainer Cassie Coleman has managed, all of them spotty with their speedy miles.

    If a quick three-quarters is going to ruin a few of these, count Tellitlikeitis among the ruined. First off, without a good spot to let those in front of him work hard, it is difficult to see him engaging in any challenges. He may wind up a second-tier member of the division and we certainly don’t see him shining in this group.

    Jimmy Takter pacers are every bit as dangerous as Jimmy Takter trotters and Lyonssomewhere could prove it. His soph career so far shows the kind of speed that could set this race up for a closer but look out because Lyonssomewhere can also close. That’s because he is a product of Somebeachsomewhere, who won this race, as did one of his sons, Captaintreacherous. It is hard to believe that “Lyons” is the only son of “Somebeach” in this field. Add Takter to tactics and bloodline and you have a potent blend of danger.

    Lets Drink On It
    To show the basic impotence of speed as a major factor in a top class, look at how Lets Drink On It let McWicked take over last week. “Drink” didn’t only sink, he let Sometimes Said, who worked harder, fly by him. At the risk of writing one more wisecrack, we don’t imagine any glasses being raised for the success of Drink in the Cup.

    Ideal Cowboy
    This gelding got into the race as the random draw. He is not of this ilk and will be very long odds that still represent an underlay. There just isn’t any case for him to be here, no less win.

    Hes Watching
    We all should know the story of this New York-bred colt by now and still have reservations about his talent. In the Cup he meets the best group of colts he may ever face and that alone is reason to imagine he finishes off the board. In order for him to change my mind and even consider him in the class of some of these, he will have to win this through adversity and domination, a rare combination that stamps a true hero.

    Luck Be Withyou
    When this one peaks it will be done with the maturity he still seeks this early in the season. Maybe in the Little Brown Jug or when he gets as good as he became when he beat Sometimes Said in the Breeders Crown at two in 2013. But he isn’t as good as he will get this season and so he gets only a few chances in the percentage pool for this race.

    JK Endofanera
    He must be painfully respected in this race because he has exploded at three and his loss in the elim last week as a dead-on favorite should be embraced considering he gave way to Lyons, who we applauded a few paragraphs ago. He is sharp and still improving upon how he has returned to the races at three with major talent and willingness. If the bettors let him go this time he becomes a major overlay, with post 9 actually benefiting his tactical speed.

    Sometimes Said
    From the time he almost defeated Luck Be Withyou at the Breeders Crown (he got our public support during live coverage of the race at Pocono Downs) we have respected Something Said and certainly more than the betting public when he faces the top tier in his own division. He is better than most of these guys on a few levels and has his work cut out for him if he is going to race as he should to be at the wire with one or two others.

    SUMMARY—The top three contenders for us are Lyonssomewhere, JK Endofanera and Sometimes Said, though which provides the strongest overlay remains to be seen in the wagering. We hope you find respect for these individually or in some order of your own preference to use them in your win, place, show and exotic wagers.

    Fan Hanover Hussies

    The Fan Hanover Final, worth $457,500, lines the starting car with 10 filly pacers, which are unevenly matched in pure muscle. We gave you Uffizi Hanover last week and she surprisingly went off at 6-1, mostly due to the loyalty of the locals, making Nat A Virgin and Beach Gal the top two choices. “Uffizi” may rightfully be the public choice in the final, as the Breeders Crown winner (we supported her when she won there at two last November) seems to tower over this group.

    One positive is the failure of favorites in elim two. Won by Table Talk (37-1), the top choice of the division and early choice to win this event, Precocious Beauty, quit badly in the stretch (finishing seventh, which was last) and only the third choice, Major Dancer, was present at the wire, second to the winning longshot, while second-choice Lady Shadow was also very bad at 5-2, finishing sixth. If the locals return to their beloved fillies, Uffizi may be a soft favorite, still well worth it in this crew. Bahama Blue and Beach Gal could round out a decently priced triactor.

    Armbro Flight

    The versatile mares will contest in the $266,000 Armbro Flight Final on the Cup program, highlighted by such famed gals as Bee A Magician and Perfect Alliance. Yet, even with these two dominant forces in the field, it does not take away from the profit potential in this event. One mare that fits this criterion is D’orsay, an elimination winner caught in the shadow of Perfect Alliance, who set a Canadian record of 1:51.4 in the other elimination.

    Since Perfect Alliance has received a resounding amount of press, D’orsay could be a price but not anything close to the 54-1 odds she carried when we cashed on her last week. She looks to sit a stalking trip in a race where the pace will be hot; the mile looks to set up for a mare like D’orsay. Also beware of Bee A Magician, who may inflate in price after her back-to-back second-place efforts to both mares mentioned above.

    Red As Roses

    The $330,000 Roses Are Red Final included another winner for us in the elims, as Yagonnakissmeornot (7-1) beat the top choices in round two. Anndrovette, in the first elim, overcame some trouble in a dynamic win over her mare-pacing rivals. “Ann” will probably get the public’s nod and “Yagonna” should get some play. Somwherovrarainbow always gets action and will do so here.

    But in the final Summertime Lea has got to be considered a contender. She had the toughest trip in the Ann elim, which was the better field of the two, and got no respect from bettors at 27-1. That could have been a strong warning to the others from the Ron Burke-trained mare. She may be offering near her odds last week, since the money has to spread thin by the time they get to her after the first three mentioned and Shesbesingin, Camille and Shelliscape.

    Another ‘Cup’

    Older male pacers shoot for pieces of $100,000 in the Mohawk Gold Cup. It’s a mixture of local campaigners and the usual suspects from the States. A look at the morning line (ML) may indicate this is going to be a good betting race. How, for instance, can State Treasurer be the ML choice? That would be wonderful. Winning the Molson Pace at Western Fair is not Mohawk and you won’t, for one, see the same Foiled Again that was beaten there.

    This crowd will continue to like Thinkin Out Loud and the spottily speedy Warrawee Needy, so some win money is going to be spread around. Keep an eye on the odds for Sunshine Beach, who has an excellent spot to make a go at stealing the mile. And on the outside, Bettors Edge and Mach It So may work out some good trips to be in the thick of it. But will Foiled Again go off 7-2 or more? That will be hard to pass up.  

    The Pick 4s

    There are three major Pick-4 wagering sets on Cup night. We offer horses (by post) that we feel you should consider having on your ticket(s).
    Early Pick 4 (Races 4—7): Use 5,8,10/ 3,4/ 5,7/ 1,4,6
    Middle Pick 4 (Races 7—10): Use 1,4,6/ 5,6,8/ 2/ 4,9,10
    Late Pick 4 (Races 11—14): Use 6, 10/ 3,7/ 3/ 9

    H2W Legend

    Review our choices and follow the wagering at the prescribed track. These are 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 it 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 on the also-eligible list. If a horse is listed twice, refer to the entries on the night of the race since a horse may enter in more than one race. Types of wagering on any of the H2W listed horses are based on your judgment. If you have any questions, email us at TwinSpires.


    6/14/14, +Adelias Prince R2

    6/14/14, +Jackson Wyatt R5

    6/12/14, +Baksidebar Nlounge R1
    6/13/14, +Dunside Art R1

    6/13/14, +Ma Chere Hall R6

    6/13/14, +SJs Hottie Won R5; +Martini Twist R6

    6/14/14, +Hes A Lock R1; +Giant Sculpture R14
    6/15/14, +Drop The Ball R10

    6/13/14, +Mcattee R10
    6/13/14, +Ladyofcastlebrook R1

    6/14/14, +Jam And Jelly R8

    6/14/14, Youwillwishyouhad R5; Printing A Place R7; +Oozies Bad Boy R9; +Whitemountain Power R9

    6/13/14, +Geton The Way R1; +Sign Of The Moment R1

    Ray Cotolo contributes to each edition.      
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