Meadows And Meadowlands Explode With Stakes, Stars And Excitement

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July 30th, 2015

It’s a big weekend for harness racing bettors, followed another big weekend for harness racing bettors. We leave July 2015 by diving into stakes that roll into the first weekend of August and lead to the second week of August—the end of the Hambletonian Trail.

The TwinSpires exclusive Hambletonian Trail blog this week covers July 31 eliminations for the Hambletonian Oaks for the soph-filly trotters. This is set to be an exciting event, as top-soph-filly Mission Brief will race with the boys in the Hambletonian on Aug. 8 instead of going in her own division. Colts that may enter the main event prep on July 31, too. It’s top coverage from TwinSpires and the Hambletonian Society that will be reporting live from The Meadowlands on Aug. 8 with tweets about betting the stakes-filled program, exclusive comments from horsemen and up-to-post-time changes.

At the Meadows on Aug. 1 there’s an action-packed afternoon program featuring the Adios Final and the filly Adioo Volo stakes for colt and filly glamour pacers, respectively.

The Meadowlands Friday program presents eliminations for the Peter Haughton Memorial Final (frosh-colt trotters) and the James Doherty Memorial (formerly the Merrie Annabelle, for frosh-filly trotters). On Saturday there are an Open trots and a pace for older horses to compete on the Aug. 8 card.
Elsewhere in North America we offer more contenders in our horses-to-watch (H2W) list. Hot across-the-board/exotic action deserves your attention when you look through the list of horses competing at many tracks available on TwinSpires. Don’t miss out on exclusive probabilities from our personal files.

TwinSpires also continues to team with Hoosier Park for another season of player perks. Click here to check it out. A spring special offers free harness past performances through June. Click here to take advantage of the deal.

James Doherty Elims

Frosh-filly trotters battle in three $20,000 splits to get into next week’s “Doherty” final. Eight line up in round one on July 31 at The Meadowlands. Broadway Donna is the one to beat here for trainer Jim Campbell. The filly has not lost in four races, assuring her favoritism here, where the only other winner is Hollywood Hill (two wins in three starts). Any of the others will break their maidens with a win. Jimmy Takter’s I’m Outstanding may be the outside threat to the two obvious choices, with Takter scheduled to steer.

Nine occupy the second elim, where there are less maidens. It would seem Julie Miller’s Womans Will can easily take the majority of the public’s win money. In three starts she had two wins and a show, flashing good speed with a smooth gait. Takter is up again on his two-for-three filly Miss Tezsla, who is among two others he launches in this field. His daughter, Nancy Johansson’s Silent Blessings is the top money earner here, though still a maiden, and if she can overcome the 9 hole she will reward her backers with a great price.

Another nine line up for the third split and Takter’s gals should get top billing on the tote board. Offering a price is Thankful Reward, the single femme sired by Yankee Glide, who is having a great season with his frosh fillies. Second in her only two starts, Tony Alagna’s student could easily surprise the obvious choices and go into the final with a lot more support from the crowd. So, catch her now.

Peter Haughton Elims

Next week’s Peter Haughton Memorial Final will traditionally present the winter-book favorite for the 2016 Hambletonian, so these two elims are important for pride and profit. Only three of 10 have wins to their early careers. However, we like one of the maidens, a son of Explosive Matter, who is doing well with two-year-olds so far this year. D.R. Ackerman’s green guy has a third in three starts but can’t be dismissed this early in his career. Explosive Yankee will be a price, for sure.

The second $20,000 contest presents nine frosh colts, only two still maidens. A colt we liked at Philadelphia last weekend, Lagerfield, shows up here (he won’t, therefore, be on the H2W list). He’s one of two Takter colts, so it is hard to feel he will be ignored in the betting. If he is hammered, or if you want to key him, take heed of Julie Miller’s Milligan’s School. He’s the other son of Yankee Glide who stands a chance of taking these down at a price.

Adios 2015

The $400,000 purse for this years Adios Pace at the Meadows is more than most of the final’s cast has or will see, considering the low grade of pacers in the cast. Without any of the division’s stars, the track has made Dude’s The Man (DTM) the morning-line (ML) favorite. Not even a winner in his elim, DTM as the probable choice makes this a greater betting race than the event usually presents.

The elimination winners—longshot Cooperstown and favorites My Hero Ron and National Seelster—along with Yankee Bounty, offer trainer Ron Burke a chance to win the Adios for the first time. “Hero” should have become the ML favorite but DTM’s second in The Meadowlands Pace has impressed far more than he deserves with that finish. Tony Alagna has a pair in here with Trading Up and Dreams Beachboy. But even the trainers are aware this field is weak all around and a lot of circumstances may surface to make cases for every colt here.

We are going with the colt we backed last week that came in second to 37-1 shot Cooperstown, Brian Brown’s Lost For Words. Cooperstown kept to the rail the entire race and scraped the neck victory from the easy trip for Burke. That was the DTM’s elim, too, and he had it as easy as Cooperstown and couldn’t get up. That race alone should have negated the “Pace” finish. But let’s be happy at how the majority thinks because it allows us get a price on “Words.”

Hero should put in a good race, trying again to steal it on the top and he may be tough hanging on but Words is the bet; keep him in the exotics with Hero and use Dreams Beachboy for a trifecta. These numbers have great possibilities and should have the prices to make this a great score.

Adioo Volo

The filly Adios at the Meadows is worth $62,500 each for two divisions with 16 pacing fillies. Middle-ranged talent lines up in the first edition, the exception leaving from post 8—Bettor Be Steppin. Joe Holloway’s gal has gotten by the wagering public twice, paying well each time. Her earnings are more than twice any foe here. We can hope the post position turns off bettors enough to let her go again but that may not be the case considering the less-than-popular seven to her left.

Certainly one of those could win given a sterling trip. Serious Filly from post 1 tops the pair trained by Brian Brown. She could get lucky with a ground-saving mile. But “Steppin” out-classes the lot of them and if she is bet down badly, she still may be one of the best exotic key plays from an 8 hole yet this season.

The other Holloway hot horse goes in the second Adioo Volo split and also gets post 8. This is Divine Caroline. Her main nemesis, The Show Returns, will leave from post 1 and if class holds up they should be the stars of this affair. Again, “Divine” could get tempting odds from post 8 and “Show” may dip too low for some, so how these two get their action should decide on which gets the bet.

Adios Consolation

There’s $50,000 for nine colts not good enough to get into the poor cast of the Adios final. Here, too, trainer Brian Brown has a good shot, this time with Rise Up Now. A winner of seven out of 10 starts this season and the top money-earner in this weak bunch, he could very well wind up the public choice.

Jim Campbell’s Jo Pa’s Well Said was only 4-1 last week, finishing fifth, and he has a good spot to make some noise here, certainly as an exotic element if not getting the win. Rock N’ Roll World will try to steal it but hasn’t been able to win with that style in 11 tries. However, he could set it up for the aforementioned duo.


Saturday, Aug. 1 at The Meadowlands, pacing and trotting events for older males and females are previews for big stakes on Hambletonian day, Aug. 8. The Lady Liberty and John Cashman Jr. Memorial do not require eliminations this year, with 12 entering the “Cashman” and 11 going in the “Liberty” which, by Meadowlands rules, make them 1 1/8-mile events on Aug. 8.

The trotting event features the likes of Obrigado, winner of a previous prelim in this series, along with 2014 International Trot Preview winner Natural Herbie. This division, too, has been a brawl for the spot of head honcho and this race will likely reinforce that case. However, Obrigado may be the favorite here.

Obrigado is a deserving favorite but he won’t be a price that fits our pursuits for profit. However, Dw’s Ny Yank should supply us with nice odds. He enters off a third-place effort in an Open at Philadelphia, where he broke at 1-5. He also put in a sharp performance in the Cleveland Trotting Classic despite his third-place finish. He is in the best form he has been all season and his constant place and show efforts may inflate his odds.

The Open Pace is another contest that should result in a good payoff, with Mach It So likely receiving money off a circumstantial win in the William Haughton Memorial, as well as the famed Doo Wop Hanover, State Treasurer, and Foiled Again being present. Once again, Jk Endofanera should be a good bet because of the aforementioned money-grabbers. He closed similarly to State Treasurer in the “Haughton” with a :25.2 final quarter, except he was storming home closer to the center of the track than State Treasurer, who enjoyed a comfortable pylon ride.

The Mare Pace is a competitive affair. Anndrovette, off a pouncing move to victory from the cat-bird seat in the Golden Girls, should be bet heavier this time but Sandbetweenurtoes may remain the favorite judging by her constant bad trips as well as the public consistently forgiving such miles. Table Talk should be another mare that will receive money because of her consistent nature, making this a race with plenty of value outside this trio.

Radar Contact may be that value wager off a second in a Mares Open first-over trip. The 2015 Betsy Ross winner has a knack for racing on the lead but seems to have been priming her efforts from off the pace. While she failed to qualify for the Roses Are Red Final she seems to have rebounded off that poor effort and improved. She should be able to get a good trip at least.
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.


8/1/15, +Terlingua R2

7/31/15, Outlaw Falcon ae R7 
8/1/15, +Hilldrop Shady R7

8/1/15, +Holy Mollie Maggie R2; +Ebc Bruno R3; Shock The Rock R11

7/31/15, Body Talk R2; Ella Rose R3; Brooklets Honeypie R11
8/1/15, The Ladies Man R3; +Dali Treasure ae R8; Virgil R9; K-lees Shakenbake R9

7/30/15, Sugar Scootin Babe R2; Desiree Bellabella R8

7/31/15, +Hititoutofthepark R6; +Glimmer N Shimmer R12
8/1/15, +Cheapskate Hanover R13

8/3/15, +Worldwide

7/31/15, Delightful Syd R4; +Tainted Money R6; Fashion Fuzzy R9; Y Mach Me R9; Riverdancer R12

7/31/15, Carmens Image R2; Brussels Hanover R6

7/30/15, +Blod Fresh R2

7/30/15, +Cabbies Delight R8
8/2/15, +Said It Best R12

7/30/15, +Janet R3
7/31/15, +The Filly Princess R7

8/1/15, Imprudent Speed R2

7/30/15, Duet R12
7/31/15, Woman Of Terror R6; Last Flight In R9; Go Go Jo Jo R10.
8/1/2015, +Volo R6; +Lincolnjames R9

7/31/15, +Crazy Over You R4
8/1/15, Celebrity Stimulus R6; +Driving Miss Crazy R11; Yankee Manny R11

7/30/15, +Artmagic R4

Ray Cotolo contributes to each edition.