Exotic Bets And Their Race Legs Offer Big Returns In Features

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February 4th, 2016

February greets our second month of personal features as 2016 continues in its early yet plentiful season of harness racing. We will take another shot at the big Miami Valley Pick 4 this coming Saturday, attempting to succeed at what no one has done in the past two weeks—hit it. We came closest with three of four while we have presented the highest priced winner of a leg.

This week we also take aim at the Friday Early Pick 4 at the Meadowlands, where exceptional prices from large fields have presented many winners since racing started for 2016.

We’ll begin our features selections again with two at Freehold on Thursday and explore overnights elsewhere on Friday and Saturday. TwinSpires exclusive H2W (horses-to-watch list) partners with our features content again. The unique harness feature presents horses that play important roles across the board and in single- and multi-race exotics. They come straight from our personal research of horses’ performances across North America.  

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 4
Thursday, Feb. 4

In what appears to be a contentious event there may be the advantage of odds spread out to where a strong contender of two may promise appealing odds. With two morning-line choices in this conditioner that are both shaky prospects, we can hope that Quiet Cammille will not be accepted with the probabilities she presents. With tough Freehold posts in her last two efforts, the 13-year-old mare was paid from the purse grid at 37-1 (third) and 46-1 (second). From post 2 here, a trouble-free trip could stun the obvious foes.

Also behind the top two morning-line choices is That Girl Of Mine, who was the even-money choice in this class last week and who broke the race before that, losing to Quiet Cammile. This race offers a 10-cent Superfecta, which would be complemented if our two suggested contenders took part in the four needed to win.

Freehold/Race 9
Thursday, Feb. 4

The morning-line maker has chosen to ignore the terrific effort of Doggone Incredible on Jan. 30 at a level above this one and we can only hope the odds prediction is correct while the aged pacer takes control of first place when it counts most. The former claimer need only spread out the energy spent in her recent affair to defeat soft favorites that are both coming from money-burning efforts. This is the first half of the Late Daily Double.

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/ Pick 3/ Race 4-6
Friday, Feb. 5

In the first leg, Race 4, post 10 launches Twin B Elite, who has a slight class edge on the other nine and could be overlooked by the crowd considering recent public-favoring driver trends. Her Jan. 29 race can be easily tossed out, since it was a good try and it came after a scratch. The Jan15 race is the key to a great performance here. She beat Precious Rose N, who just won, and is back from that victory.

Leg two, Race 5, is a tad more complex than the first leg, even though it is similar in conditions. Two races back, the H2W scored a big-payoff place and show with Bloomfieldcantifly in her first list appearance. She was flat in her second list performance, arguably with a 10-post excuse. She has every reason to return to the two-week-ago form and the races that got her there, as one contender in this field. Her main foes include Sharp Edge and Feisty Love, whose presence in the thick of the late-stretch action would be no surprise.

Concluding the stream is Race 6 are aged trotters wallowing in classes. A fresh one to the division is trainer Ake Svanstedt’s Blue Muse. Having failed to keep up with the first tier of soph fillies last season, she presented a pair of good performances as a four-year-old, the better of the two at the Meadowlands (her first of ’16 was at Yonkers). She cannot be ignored here, as she could be finding her best stride with these types. For further Pick-3 price-boosting, consider the Pompano shipper, Its Payday Friday, who didn’t travel north to play in the snow. 

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

Miami Valley / Pick 4 / Races 9-12
Saturday, Feb. 6

The opening weekend of Miami’s February racing continues the trend of competitive racing within their late Pick-4 sequence.

Kicking off the Pick 4, Race 9, is a conditioned pacing event led by Schoolkids, Roll On, and One Lucky Dragon. Winning against the level below this two starts back, Schoolkids attempted to compete against tougher foes, parking the mile and finishing seventh. He draws better this time around, which should allow him to be a greater threat since he can better obtain position close to the lead. Roll On finished second at this level off a first-over trip, managing to gain positioning into an accelerating pace. Towards the outside of the starting gate, One Lucky Dragon moves up in class and makes his third start off a layoff. Hanging first over through a fast pace last out he should be able to get a mid-pack spot here, allowing him to stalk the pace.

Ally-con is the horse to beat in leg two, Race 10, a $12,500 claiming event. He enters from two wins against similar competition, pulling them off with aggressive efforts. Yet, if, for some reason, Ally-con comes up short here, Singing Saint could spring the upset. Sweeping from ninth in the final quarter, he came only a length away from victory. Now starting from a better post, he should get away closer to the leader, granting him the ability to ride a covered trip

More claimers line up for the third leg, Race 11, with Roll‘em Up being the one to beat. That said, three pacers have the potential to beat him: Wilcox, Hot N Shooting and Bad Bug. Making his first start off a claim last week, Wilcox finished second as the favorite after challenging the leader first over. Hot N Shooting pulled off a similar effort in his last mile, albeit it against the claiming level below this one. Nevertheless, he has raced well since being claimed on Jan. 16. Bad Bug will make his first outing with his new barn, entering off a second-place effort against similar competition. He’ll have to overcome an outside draw but since he’s an off-the-pace type, that should not be too grave an issue.

Claimers cap this Pick 4 sequence, Race 12. From the 10 pacers entered, Desperation and Hey Dali are the best contenders for value. Stuck to the outside of the leading horse for the entire mile last out, Desperation fought for the top, fading to fourth at the end. He draws well again but should not park the mile. Hey Dali jumps in class off a win against $15,000 claimers. Being claimed two starts ago, he put in a strong effort, brushing first over to a 3-length win. He should not have any issues with this field.

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.


2/5/16, +Power Off R2; +Every Girls Desire R9; Stirling Cadillac R9
2/6/16, +Ha Jung R1; Whosurpal R4

Cal Expo
2/5/16, +Tour Guide R7
2/6/16, +Drink At Last Call R7; +Rag Doll R9; +Barbosa R10

2/8/16, Rocknroll Power

2/6/16, Missys Future Luck R4; Hellsapoppin R7

2/7/16, +Outlawcoltfortyfor R1

2/4/16, +The X Horse R8; +Keystone Camero R8
2/5/16, +Boots Place ae R2; +Nutmegs Dancer R8
2/6/16, Taylorland Cruises R8

2/5/16, Wh Carmen R5
2/6/16, Life Is Good Today R4; I’m So Handsome R5
2/5/16, +Caviat Shelly R10

2/6/16, Rompaway Gypsy R5; Artsmah R13; +Gibbs R13; +Chip Again R14

2/6/16, +J’s Six Pack Attack R6; +Thisjetsabookin R8; +Fancy Creek Elusiv R8; +Hasty Weapon R10; +Show Me Up R10; +Talk Strategy R12

2/8/16, +Mr Invincible R7

2/6/16, Twinky R5

2/6/16, +Kickoff Hanover R4; Wing Flash R4

2/5/16, +Scary Good R7
2/6/16, R Choochoo Charlie R1; +Kremlin R1; Ideal Jet R10

2/5/16, +Eskimo Joe R2; +Hasty Proffitt R5
2/6/16, +Melmerby Beach R7

Ray Cotolo contributes to each edition