A Fist Fulla Features In Pursuit Of Harness Profits

Profile Picture: Frank Cotolo

December 10th, 2015

The stars are on holiday and soon some of them will be awarded divisional championships, with the coveted Horse of the Year prize capping the ceremonies. When they return, the crops of 2015 will all be a year older but until then they will rest, relax and wallow in the fields while their connections plan for next year’s stakes.

As we do each year we will again be presenting in our blogs—before year’s end—the TwinSpires Players Horse of the Year. This will be the one winner we posted any time during the 2015 season, either in a feature or in the H2W (horses-to-watch) list, that paid the highest win mutual.

He or she (no age limit, either), will top the list of all horses we supported in these blogs for 2015 that won and paid 4-1 or higher.

Meanwhile, though high-profile events per divisions will not surface again this year and winter series action is slim to none, our main blog will present its own feature races, as well as extended coverage in the H2W list. The features we decide to highlight will be overnight events that we feel offer great betting opportunities in all of the possible wagering formats. More times than not, our suggested contenders play big roles in exotics and even many losers report on the toteboard with large prices to place and show.

Our features will be presented with a full analysis of the race, as we have presented the high-profile stakes during the season. The H2W list will remain in its usual format, by racetrack and dates.

F E A T U R E S ~ F E A T U R E S ~ F E A T U R E S

Freehold/Race 10
Thursday, Dec. 10

A pair of strong favorites will overshadow a possible upset chance by His Eminence in this $4,000 claimer. We toss out his Nov. 28 stroll around the four turns from post 7 in a $6,000 claimer after being scratched sick the week before from this class. On Nov. 12 he was on the road to victory when he was shuffled in traffic, finishing fifth but placed fourth. On Oct. 29 he won for his new owner/trainer/driver, Nick Surick, who claimed him for this price when the gelding was second at this level. From post 6 in this mile he could find a comfortable spot behind the obvious gunners, Big Puff Doggie (2) and Beau Rivage N (4), the latter that was beaten by His Eminence on Oct. 15, and could be a huge threat from the half to the finish, where he should be in the mix to help exotics and hopefully shake the toteboard with an upset.

Dayton/Pick 4/Races 6—9
Thursday, Dec. 10

The late Pick 4 for Thursday from Dayton Raceway gathers a competitive sequence. Aside from the exotic, we urge you to pay attention to the other wagers available in the Pick-4 legs.

Kicking off the bet is a conditioned claiming event (Race 6), which features two pacers that should not be neglected despite their move up in class: Ab’s Attack and E R Myron. Ab’s Attack steps into this company off a win as the favorite against $4,000 conditioned claimers. He will be a threat off the right trip and should be able to position himself accordingly from the inside. E R Myron moves up after winning against $4,000 claimers with a first-over trip. Sent off the odds-on favorite, he was claimed for the second time in a row at that level, being claimed the week before as well.

The second leg (Race 7) does not feature a standout, making the wagering among the field more diverse. Odds On Serpens may take some play after finishing third at this level last week. He’s a contender in this field despite probable favoritism, especially if he races off the lead since his third-place finish the week before was likely the result of tiring on the front. Independent Spirit is dipping into this company from the non-winners of $2,750 group and could provide value if the public disregards him for his poor trip last week. Previous to his start at Dayton on Dec. 3, he competed at Northfield, where he was frequently caught first over against similar competition and managed to finish well regardless. He should be sharper on his second go around the track.

Big Wheel is the oddball in leg three (Race 8). He’s dropping from non-winners of $4,000 into non-winners of $2,850 for good reasons—he stunk against tougher horses. Yet, his unappealing finishes were partially the result of bad trips and poor draws. Starting from post 9 last week, he didn’t show any speed and chased his foes from the back. Yet, on Nov. 27 on sloppy going, he got away in the middle of the pack and ventured first up for most of the mile. He will definitely benefit from the move in class, and should have more in his tank than it seems.

The finale of the sequence (Race 9) is a non-winners of four races lifetime event. Ohio Sires Stakes champion Rock N Randall makes his second start off a two-month layoff from the rail and could quite possibly go off a great price. He apparently put in a bad trip in his return, moving first over briefly to then hang for the rest of the mile. However, with a start under his belt, expect him to be more aggressive and aim for a stalking trip.

F E A T U R E S ~ F E A T U R E S ~ F E A T U R E S

Meadowlands/Race 8
Friday, Dec. 11

In a conditioned race separated by a thousand here and a thousand there, there is good reason to look at a probable outsider, Spirit Of Desire. With a recent win in November at Philadelphia a few pegs down in class, this mare’s two races in a higher class are good trips with wagering far below her chances. As well, her latest Meadowlands mile at 71-1 was promising enough to make her a contender here, where the droppers appear to be literally on their ways down.

Northfield/Race 6
Friday, Dec. 11

A first shot at Northfield last week, Fly To The Angels had a strong but tiresome first half. The veteran mare has been working in higher classes for cheaper purses, which may discourage bettors but she was racing well before a scratch and a month off before traveling to Ohio. She’s an outside contender here and it would not surprise us if she excels among these at a good price after the public dismisses her for the wrong reasons.

F E A T U R E S ~ F E A T U R E S ~ F E A T U R E S

Meadowlands/Race 9
Saturday, Dec. 12

Staying in a conditioned race for the second time after tough claimers at Yonkers, Up Up And Out stormed to three-quarters on Nov. 21 and flattened. But it was a very good race on the mile for the first time and he stays in this class to negotiate a better trip, which he could get in this scrambling bunch and probably at a very good price for the Millers. The gelding would boost some exotic pays, for sure.

Charlottestown/Race 5
Saturday, Dec. 12

Here’s a positive step up—Hog Aufray. His race with lesser six days ago was gallant. He was interfered with at the start, took the overland journey to be first over gaining and stayed outside to fade by three-quarters. He broke and was eliminated in this class the race before that and in a better conditioned event on Nov. 22 he was 7-2 and a champ going first over to get third. Trainer Earl Watts puts him into this conditioner where few players will credit “Hog” for showing up. The price will be right.

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.


12/11/15,  +Tailgate Blues R10
12/12/15, +Bahama Bay R4; The Dominate One R5

Cal Expo
12/12/15, Avila Beach R5
12/13/15, +Smiling Major R11; +Blue Note R11

12/12/15, Caspiana R2; +Gracious Minnie R4; Lyons Katrina R7; Timely Finesse R10

12/10/15, Allstar Man R1; R Iii Sons R3; +Totally Kissed ae R5; +Pacific Western R13
12/14/15, Csardas R4

12/10/15, Impatient Lady R3; Rocket Art R10
12/13/15, +Topcornerterror R3

12/11/15, +Red Star Brea R5; Keyed Entry R8; Krystal Pistol R10
12/13/15, Magic Number R2; +Lisplaced R5; +Four Diamonds R8; Blurricane R8; +Thieving Magpie R9; Buddy Wesier R9; Ronny Woo Woo R11

12/10/15, Gogh On R3; People Friendly R5; Checks Commodore R7; +Move It Move It R8
12/11/15, Overgrown R9; +Wine Market R11

12/11/15, Moveslike Mcjagger R5
12/14/15, Bunkhouse Brawl R3; Chazmatazz R4; Firm It Up R11; Mateo M R14; J Matt R15

12/11/15. Bloomfieldcanifly ae R4; Four Hour Nap R5; Pancakes R10
12/12/15,  +Shaving Mug R5

12/11/15, Pinkpolo socks R1

12/11/15, +Twilight Raes R1

12/11/15. Goddess’s Rosa R3; Caviat Christa R4

12/13/15, Four Socks R6; Red Pine R11

12/10/15, +Ozymandros R6
12/11/15, Ella V Horse R7

12/10/15, +Boy Meets Grill
12/11/15, Musical Spell R2; +Pinky Tuscadero R5; +Camps Bay R10
12/12/15, Naturescape R1; Shock N Rock R3; Big City Jewel R3; +Track Master D R9

12/11/15, +Tyler R6

Ray Cotolo contributes to each edition