Cold Exacta Picks—$140, $46—Top Long Weekend’s Profit Parade
The long weekend began with big win. In the first installment of our annual Breeders Crown Countdown (BCC) series in its own blog presentation, we scored big with a “mortal lock.” The soph-filly trotting sensation, Mission Brief, was an easy winner ($2.10, $2.10, n/s) in the Moni Maker Stakes at the Meadows on Aug. 21. Our second contender was I’m So Fancy ($9.20, n/s) who took advantage of staying on stride and a clear path to finish second at 97-1. That resulted in an exacta worth $46.60, a huge price under the circumstances. We offered a triple combo, but our third choice, Smexi (80-1), was fifth. (See H2W results below for $140.50 cold exacta.)
Also from the BCC, we gave a winner in the first Hudson Filly Trot elim at Yonkers. Bright Baby Blues ($5.60, $3.00 n/s) was an easy winner, while in the second split we were second with Lady Winona ($2.40, n/s). The BCC failed to catch the upset winner in the Sebastian K Invitational, E L Titan (a horse we won with and backed before at good prices) when Natural Herbie (12-1) raced an outside mile to finish sixth.
Our betting supplement to the main blog is the Breeders Crown Countdown. The exclusive blog coordinates with our harness blog at TwinSpires.com and the Hambletonian Society to find great wagering opportunities for "Crown" eligibles as they race their ways to the Crown finals. This year the Crown finals take place at Woodbine on Saturday, Oct. 24, with elims the week before.
From the main blog we started the weekend off well when on Aug. 21 we nabbed the Crawford Trot from Vernon with Obrigado ($11.40, $5.70, $4.00). In the other two features at the New York oval we tanked with Sandbetweenurtoes (35-1), seventh, and Shake It Cerry (6-1), sixth.
The Colonial Trot at Pocono on Aug. 22 turned betting pools inside out when Hambletonian-winner Pinkman broke at the start and handed the race to the field that could not have beaten him if he trotted as he has this season to become the dominant glamour-boy trotter. However, our second choice finished second and our third choice finished third and due to the upheaval in the betting pools, The Bank ($13.40, $24.20 ok) and Uncle Lasse ($19.40) shared huge pay offs with their backers.
Wiggle It Jiggleit ($2.40, $2.10, $2.10 ok) was much the best at Pocono on Aug. 22 chasing our possible upset choice Artspeak (24-1, which is not a typo). Gallant enough for most the mile, Artspeak was nailed late by “Wiggle” and our other contender, Wakizashi Hanover ($4.00, $3.60) and without Artspeak, the exacta paid $8.20.
Our Valley Forge results at Pocono were miserable, with none finishing on the board, Two were within favorite range: Luck Be A Linday (9-2) finished fourth and Wicked Little Minx (5-1) finished seventh. Gigi Deo (15-1) came in eighth.
Mohawk Grand Circuit action was chalky, so we hit only one third in the trio of Nassagaweya splits with Racing Hill ($3.40). On the filly side, Eternal Camnation split one handed players the place horse, Blue Moon Stride ($3.40, $2.50), who with the favorite delivered an $18.30 exacta and a third, Darlinonthebeach ($2.40)
Sunday, Aug. 23, Charlottetown’s Gold Cup and Saucer was raced after being postponed by heavy rains on Saturday. We were third with Lucan Hanover ($4.80).
Also on Sunday, Tioga’s stakes were unkind to our choices. Our only agreed upon public choice, Divine Caroline ($2.20, $2.10) was second in the Empire Breeders Classic for soph-filly pacers. National Seelster (33-1) lost to an 11-1 shot in the colt version. And in the Roll With Joe, the favorite soared home and Doctor Butch (11-1) was fifth.
H2W LIST RESULTS
The H2W results list across-the-board prices. Also, exactas listed are included when a H2W horse finishes second with a race favorite or the first two finishers making up the exacta are H2W horses (an asterisk appears when both horses were listed to complete the exacta). The note “ok” determines that prices published are correct even when a show price exceeds a place price or any or all of the prices are the same. This week, there were 38 active horses (an 18-percent win hit rate and a 55 percent in-the-money hit rate). One note: the list included three horses at Batavia that at the time we thought would be betting races; they turned out to be non-betting races.
Please note that some H2W results reflect win, place and/or show results occurring after press time and that it is up to you to follow those horses that have not performed before this weekly review is posted.
Hf Nancy Babygirl, $38.50, $24.70, $5.00 (*Exacta $140.50), Century
Meet Me Tonight, $15.60, $5.20, $4.20, Century
Growly Gus, $11.20, $4.80, $3.20, Plainridge
Jailhouse Jesse, $11.00, $5.00, $3.20
Dynamic Youth, $5.10, $3.60, $2.80, Yonkers
Don’t Worry Be Happy, $3.60, $2.20, $2.10
Bellatricks, $2.20, $2.10, $2.10, Red Mile
Oakrock Almighty, $5.40, $3.10 (Exacta $21.70), Charlottetown
Fashion Katie, $5.20, $4.40 (Exacta $25.00), Meadows
Shesasmokinlady, $5.40, $5.60 ok, Meadows
Capitol Hill, $3.20, $2.90 (*Exacta $140.50), Century
For All We Know, $3.00, $2.50 (Exacta $14.70), Charlottetown
Meirs Hanover, $3.00, $3.20 ok, Charlottetown
Neat, $5.40, Scioto
Totally Ravishing, $5.20, Maywood
Bandolito, $4.60, Pocono
Emotional Blast, $4.20, Northfield
Report For Duty N, $4.10, Yonkers
Daggy, $3.00, Red Mile
Heni, $2.10, Saratoga
Skip The Jive, n/s, Yonkers
News & Notes
The 2015-16 racing season at the Isle Casino Pompano Park is quickly approaching. Opening night is Sunday, Oct. 4. One of the highlights of the season is the addition of several late-closing events to take place over the winter, including a return of the Isle of Capri Open Series. The series was last contested in 2008. There will be three legs each in the month of February for Open pacers, Open pacing mares and Open trotters. All three divisions will host a final on March 6, with the Open pacers going for $100,000 (est.) and the Open pacing mares and Open trotters going for $75,000 (est.). The series is open to all horses, with only winners of more than $200,000 in 2015 being excluded. In total, there will be 19 different late-closing events offered over the winter for all different levels.
It’s time for another flat-bet-profit-driver trial. Driver Bob McClure had five winners at Georgian Downs on Aug. 18. He drove in 11 races on that program, which would have cost a bettor $22.00 to cover. Bob passed the trial, with his winners paying—in value order—$19.80, $6.80, $6.20, $4.80 and $4.10. For the $22.00 investment, supporters received $41.70, a $19.70 profit.
With freshmen racing strewn across the programs of North American harness tracks, here is the current list of top sires by average earnings, according to statistics calculated at the USTA. For pacers: Somebeachsomewhere, Big Bad John, Art Major, Roll With Joe, Western Ideal, Sportswriter, McArdle, World Of Rocknroll and Shadyshark Hanover. For trotters: Triumphant Caviar, Tranforthefuture, Donato Hanover, Muscle Hill, Conway Hall, Explosive Matter, Justice Hall, Full Count, Here Comes Herbie and Yankee Glide. At this point in the season, the sires to watch are the ones that have not become popular by name. So, progeny of pacing sires to watch include World Of Rocknroll and Shadyshark Hanover. Progeny of trotting sires to watch include Triumpant Caviar, Trainforthefuture, Justice Hall and Full Count.
The Cotolo Blog’s exclusive on-the-road report from journalist, historian, photographer and harness horseman Thom Pye comes from Ohio, where Thom recently parked at the Delaware Fairgrounds near Columbus. Thom spoke to many veteran harness fans about the Ohio fair circuit. “One old-timer tells me,” writes Thom, “that there were over sixteen thousand people at the Croton [Ohio] Fair on Aug. 21. That’s in a town with a population of four hundred.”
Indulge in many standardbred topics at my Hoof Beats blog titled Vast Performances.
Ray Cotolo contributed to this blog
For Thom Pye cartoons, informative harness history and more, click here ~