Harness Weekly Update: Best Stakes Hits; $51 Tops Wins

Profile Picture: Frank Cotolo

August 22nd, 2021

The TwinSpires Harness Blog Weekly Update covers our successes and failures from selected features and the H2W (horses-to-watch list).

Thursday, Aug. 19

Hooiser’s Indiana Sires Stakes offered a single match for soph-colt trotters. We offered our top three and won with Swingforthefences ($15.20, $6.80, $4.40). Brookview Bolt finished fifth and Bluebird Maverick followed, finishing sixth.

At Running Aces, the return of Alilthundadownunda ($2.60, $2.10, $2.10) from national stakes experienced (finishing last) was the definition of state-bred division dominance. Maze ($3.40, $2.80) finished second with SD Watch Me Now (5-1) fifth.

Saturday, Aug. 21

Pocono’s Sun Stakes was an afternoon program. Here are our stats for the features and their consolations.

Max Hempt

Super fast with a super price, we nailed this by a whisker with Lawless Shadow ($14.80, $5.80, $3.20). Southwind Gendry (5-1) was off the board to ruin the exacta.

Second consolation—Taking the lead for a bit, Dean B Hanover (38-1) let the favorite and four others pass him to finish sixth.

First consolation—The fans were spot-on again with the favorite winning. We completed the $9.60 exacta with Mysweetboymax ($3.00, $2.60).

James Lynch

It was one of the longest shots of the day and it raced as such. Itzpapalotl (60-1) belongs elsewhere than among these sharp pacing gals. The 5-2 over the 2-1 made most fans happy.

Consolation—Another favorite came through for the chalk folks while we rumbled home (caught again on the lead) with Staycation Hanover (4-1) finishing in the back.

Delmonica Hanover

The trifecta with the highest price atop was delivered here with Darlene Hanover ($13.00, $5.60, $2.60), Flawless Country ($4.40, $2.20) and Yo Ato Dream ($2.20) covering the $51.20 exacta and the $78.20 trifecta.

Consolation—One of the top public choices, Evening Stroll (5-2) was passed as the leader in the stretch by late closers (winner was 6-1) and finished fourth.

Earl Beal Jr.

Hambo champ Captain Corey ($2.10, $2.10, $2.10 OK) was boss again, and Spy Booth (second in the Hambo) could not get near him, no less finish on the board at a zillion to one.

Consolation—The 4-5 entry finished first and second and finishing third was our public-dismissed outsider Magical Muscle Man ($10.80). With the entry finishing first and second and our horse third, the 50-cent trifecta paid $157.45.


The H2W results list across-the-board prices. Exactas listed include a H2W horse finishing second to a race-favorite or if the first two finishers are H2W horses (an asterisk appears when both horses are listed—a cold exacta). The note “OK” determines that prices are correct (even when a show price exceeds a place price or all prices are the same).

Please note that some results reflect horses racing after the blog posts (they appear the following week).

This week, there were 33 active horses (a 27% win hit rate and a 58% ATB [across-the-board] hit). Horses with asterisks before their names were tweets @FrankCotolo. Follow for late choices.


Foreverhillreign, $51.20, $20.20, $8.40 OK, Pocono
Outlawintriguedbyu, $34.60, $9.60, $4.60, Running Aces
Really Fast, $8.80, $3.00, $2.40, Red Mile
Happy Hooligan, $5.40, $2,60, $2,10, Plainridge
Hot Joe, $5.00, $2.50, $3.10, OK, Vernon
Scirocco Patrick, $3.80, $2.80, $2.40, Philly
The Royal Poze, $3.70, $2.50, $2.40, Saratoga
Cryptocraze, $2.60, $2.20, $2.30, Saratoga
Finally Found Away, $2.40, $2.20, $2.10, Philly


Run Around John, $6.60, $3.30, Monticello
Flow With Joe, $6.50, $3.70 (Exacta $14.30), Saratoga
Run Happy Ten, $5.80, $3.20, Pocono
Stop Staring, $4.50, $4.10 (Exacta $17.80), Vernon
Lady Chaos, $4.00, $2.80 (Exacta, $11.10), Red Mile
Shady City, $4.00, $2.40, Saratoga
Contested Hanover, $2.90, n/s, Saratoga


Royal Big Guy, $4.80, Hawthorne
Piper Hanover, $4.00, Red Mile
Blue Ivy, $2.20, Northfield


By now bettors know trainer-driver Åke Svanstedt pulled the shoes on Hambletonian winner Captain Corey before the race and said racing the horse barefoot played a big role in the win. That information did not get to bettors. The knowledge that a horse races barefoot is important to a horseplayer. As a result, when live racing returns on Sept. 3, The Meadowlands will require trainers to report removal of horses’ shoes to the judges or paddock judge no later than 90 minutes before post time of the program. This allows time for the change to be reported to the public who will assess its value in wagers.

A last-ditch effort to save racing at Pompano Park failed. A provision allows Isle Casino Pompano Park to drop live racing. A huge redevelopment project will transform the property into an upscale retail, dining, office and entertainment hub. The 233-acre property has been home to harness racing since 1964. The Isle Casino had been in negotiations with horsemen to move to another location with a monetary settlement, but the legislature’s actions mean the company no longer needs to negotiate.

Here’s the latest countdown/comparison for the Little Brown Jug contenders. Our top five in the first installment follows fair publicity director Jay Wolf’s top five.

1. Perfect Sting / Lawless Shadow
2. Rockyroad Hanover / Southwind Gendry
3. Southwind Gendry / Perfect Sting
4. American Courage / Mysweetboymax
5. Lawless Shadow / Rockyroad Hanover

We continue with our comparison of the top five contenders for the North America Cup:

1. Bulldog Hanover / Southwind Gendry
2. Perfect Sting / Lawless Shadow
3. Rockyroad Hanover / Perfect Sting
4. Southwind Gendry / Rockyroad Hanover
5. Lawless Shadow / Bulldog Hanover

Extraordinary Extras

Indulge in our columns, Alternative Actions and Bettors Banquet, at Harness Racing Update.