• July’s End Is An August Overture For Harness Season

    POSTED Jul 23, 2014
    The Adios Pace, lacking the glamour-boys’ biggest stars, highlights the conclusion of Grand Circuit week at the Meadows with a band of stakes and anticipation of the first weekend in August when all of the superstars from all of the divisions make up the Meadowlands’ cast of Hambletonian-day fields. But July’s final weekend offers a lot of wagering opportunities that can help inflate our TwinSpires account with a full afternoon program at the Meadows and a full evening program with more stakes at the Meadowlands. 

    The Adios afternoon program on July 26 will feature live tweets on the Arden Downs, Adioo Volo and Adios Pace with all the late-breaking information. Follow @harnessraycer, @FrankCotolo and @TwinSpires on Twitter before betting.

    Our spin-off blog, the Hambletonian Trail features the Hambletonian Oaks prep at the Meadowlands on July 26, with seven wagering interests going for $35,000. There are no eliminations for the “Oaks” this year. The final is next week on the Big M Hambo program, where we will be on site reporting.

    Friday at the Meadowlands we have a single elimination for the frosh-colt trotters in the classic Peter Haughton and two Merrie Annabelle elims for the filly square-steppers. As well, another leg of the Ima Lula is on the bill for the mare trotters. Saturday night from the New Jersey oval, two elims for the John Cashman Memorial presents free-for-all trotters on board for a berth in next week’s final.

    Overnight action continues through North America and we have our fingers on the pulse of the action in our exclusive horses-to-watch list (H2W). Our suggested contenders prove to be valuable additions with many exorbitant place and show prices, as well as they support chunky exactas. 

    Weekdays, 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.

    Future Glamour Boys Trot

    Friday at the Meadowlands, the Peter Haughton Memorial enters phase one. A single elimination will be contested for the frosh-colt trotting event, which features 10 horses but only five betting interests. Trainer Jimmy Takter has spared no expense for stake-caliber two-year-olds, as he trains five of the 13 entered for the race (the three that receive byes for the final are Canepa Hanover, Guess Whos Back and Honor And Serve). Uncle Lasse, the only one of the quartet whose gait is not in question, highlights the four-horse entry. He enters in off of a victory in his debut and a third-place effort after attempting to go gate-to-wire, being parked in his move to the quarter.

    The obvious contenders against the entry are Svanstedt’s coupled Centurion Atm, Amicus and Cruzado Dela Noche. Centurion Atm is the leader of this group, making strong first-over moves at first asking. They’ll likely be the second choice but if one looks to beat the Takter quartet, Svanstedt’s colt is the next contender.

    Girlie Steps

    Two Merrie Annabelle elims are on tap Friday at the Meadowlands, also. Ron Burke returns to the freshmen-trotting scene, this time with two strong fillies divided into the two elims. The opening elim has Gatka Hanover, an undefeated daughter of Muscle Massive. Meanwhile, Homer Hochstetler has a Chocolatier filly, a bloodline that has been prominent with gals. Sweet Thing debuted well, winning by 4 lengths in 1:59 against maidens at Vernon. Next out, she was second in a Pennsylvania All-Star split. She followed that race with a victory against sires stakes company in 1:58 at the Meadows. She could be sharpening and her breeding not only has Chocolatier but Kadabra sired her dam. 

    Burke’s New Jersey-bred freak Mission Brief, off a 1:53.3 victory in the New Jersey Sires Stakes final is the obvious choice in round two. Yet, this speedy filly is also very green and might not mind her manners. In the event that she misbehaves, Jolene Jolene can easily sweep by this group. In her debut, she was locked at the pylons, shuffled and closed to finish third. At second asking, she could easily capitalize on Mission Brief’s possible mistake.

    Big Trotter Elims

    For the first time since the Nat Ray was renamed, two eliminations will be held for the John Cashman Memorial for older trotting males. The first elim features something that hasn’t been seen in nearly 40 years: Two Hambletonian winners will compete in the same race—Market Share and Royalty For Life. Yet, neither will likely be value in this event. Fresh off his world record in the Hambletonian Maturity, Your So Vain, a new acquisition for Ake Svanstedt, appears to be the one to beat. A huge three-wide bid in the 1 1/8-mile event at first asking makes the imagination fly as to what he can do with a start under his belt.

    The second elim could make it a Svanstedt sweep, since Sebastian K, coming in off his loss in the Maple Leaf Trot on a “sloppy” surface, returns to a track in which he’s excelled. Since he’s the one to beat, watch for Sweet Justice in the exotics. He has a home-field advantage, having spent the winter and summer at the Meadowlands. He has also shown talent against the top level and may be the underdog in this field.

    Ima Lula Deux

    Leg two of the Ima Lula series (the final is on the Hambletonian program) on July 25 at the Meadowlands should put Bee A Magician (BAM) back into the public-choice seat after two strong efforts following her illness. She was absent from last week’s first leg of this short series, winning the Miss Versatility. Classic Martine also joins the fray from that race, finishing fourth to BAM. She, too, should receive strong support.

    The Jonas Czernyson couple duo, Ma Cherie Hall and Mistery Woman, needs no introduction to the others here but looms dangerous with a price on the entry’s head. Leaving from posts 5 and 6, respectively, both of them are showing signs of being stronger than they were as sophomores, when BAM dominated the division. “Mistery” had a tough trip last week, got the lead, only to lose it to Handover Belle (post 2 in this). But Mistery trotted the better mile. And “Chere” may be over the stumbling stride that hampered her debut at four, posing a definite threat to the favorites.

    Wicked Adios?

    The 48th edition of the Adios Pace for the Orchids ($400,00) is the focus of a great stakes program on July 26 at the Meadows. As mentioned above, we will be tweeting our choices for the Grand Circuit stakes on the program live Saturday afternoon. Here, we will analyze the main event, a consolation and the filly version.

    The Adios this year presents Casie Coleman’s McWicked as a huge favorite with a morning line of 7-5. Because the colt has raced with the best and won his best efforts when the best were not present, as they are not here, the Coleman fans will dig into their pockets for a return of pennies, at best. He could soar to a record mile, sure, but who cares if he cannot reward us for the effort? Besides, three in the Adios field have a right to be claimed threats and at least two of them will be overlays.

    The longest price should me Stevensville, the wire-to-wire, 10-1 winner we gave you on in the “Rooney.” He may try to steal this and if he duels with McWicked could open a path for the lesser-priced offerings from contenders Lets Drink On It and Somewhere In LA. A winner in Canada, where most McWicked fans hail, “LA” should race better than his odds and burning front speed could give this to him. It’s a crafty game of who gets the trip if you don’t put your stock in McWicked going fastest from front to finish.

    Stevensville could be the trip horse and if there is the kind of dueling that drives speedsters outside or causes shuffling, the Ray Schnittker colt could drop a bomb on the tote board. LA and “Drink,” however, could either be worth it as overlays that would merely shake the board.

    The Adios consolation awards percentages of $30,000 to an odd crew of glamour boys in that they have raced a lot but not gotten very far in the division. This adds weight to the argument that the Adios did not attract the top tier of colts. Worth a shot here, then, would be a “now” horse and that appears to be Kingofthejungle. Last week he shot off the gate and dared the favorite, Limelight Beach, who did not make the final, to get the top. “Limelight” worked too hard to do so and wound up fourth at the wire. Kingofthejungle held well until tiring at three-quarters and finished fifth at 27-1 while ground-savers passed him. He may well be the best overlay of the program.

    Adioo Volo

    The soph-filly pacers in the $114,175 Adioo Volo total 11 and are not atop this division’s list for the season. None have tasted victory more than four times and two haven’t had a chance to win at all this season. Casie Coleman’s Also Encouraging is the top earner here and Casie will be looking to take the filly and the colt features by sending her full throttle, along with her other student, Someislansomwhere. Beach Gal is next in earnings and has been off the board only twice for Ron Burke, who also has Allstar Rating and Southwind Silence in the group.

    Bound to be ignored, however, is Gilbert Garcia-Herrera’s Marathon Day. She’s the fourth richest this season by hitting the board 10 times in 11 starts. All the well-known names will bury this filly’s chances on the board and although we doubt if Yannick Gingras would pick her to drive, she is one of four he is listed to drive before decision-making time. Her price will be appetizing and will reward backers handsomely as an outside contender.

    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.

    H2W

    Batavia
    7/25/14, +Outoftexas R7
    7/26/14, Western Heart R8; Larrys Dream R11

    Georgian
    7/26/14, Oaklea Winfrey R1; Kaboom R1
    7/27/14,  Got What It Takes R8

    Grand River
    7/25/14, Mobro Flirt R6; Cons Legacy ae R6


    Harrington
    7/24/14, +Malak Uswaad N R2; Bob N Tony R6

    Hoosier
    7/26/14, O’Sundland R8

    Meadowlands
    7/25/14, +My QP Doll R5

    Mohawk
    7/25/14, +Nefertiti Bluechip R7; +Somethingincredible R9; Bee Full Of Steinam R11
    7/26/14, Request For Parol R4; Undercover Bro R9

    Ocean
    7/25/14, +A Major Impulse R8

    Philadelphia
    7/27/14, Corky Duke R12

    Plainridge
    7/26/14, Somerset Minibob R1

    Pocono
    7/26/14, Black Hat R9

    Running Aces
    7/6/14, +Bunkerhill Bill R1; Cowgirls Rocknroll R3

    Saratoga
    7/25/14, +Amigo Ranger R7

    Scarborough
    7/z/14, Fox Valley Shannon R1; Eat Your Enemy R5

    Scioto
    7/26/14, Head Of The Barn R11; +Hi Ho Disguise R13

    Tioga
    7/26/14, +McKelvie R6

    Ray Cotolo contributes to each edition.      
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