Mohawk Scorched With Talent On Metro Pace Program; Yonkers Presents ‘Trot’ And Messenger

Profile Picture: Frank Cotolo

September 1st, 2016

Saturday, Sept. 3, delivers big Labor Day Weekend stakes. At Mohawk, two-year-old pacers take the spotlight in the annual Metro Pace and the She’s A Great Lady finals. The latter marks the return of Thats The Ticket, last week’s monumental pick that paid $119 (currenly the top candidate for our Players Horse of the Year). The colts in the Metro Pace Final battle for the press status of being next year’s champion glamour-boy pacer.

Speaking of glamour boys, Marion Marauder goes for the second leg of the Trotting Triple Crown at Yonkers in the historic Yonkers Trot and Racing Hill leads the field at Yonkers in the Messenger Stakes.

This week’s Breeders Crown Countdown focuses on stalwart pacing horses with the Canadian Pacing Derby and Champlain stakes for frosh fillies..

The TwinSpires horses-to-watch list (H2W) compliments the weekend’s suggested plays. The H2W contenders are offered for all pools. No other handicappers cover this much activity and few can brag as much about profiting from cold choices. You won’t find our best winners on any on-line or hard copy source. Take these horses seriously when constructing your wagers.


On Friday, Sept. 2, Mohawk offers Grand Circuit Champlains and Simcoes, a pair each, for frosh-colt trotters and soph-filly trotters, respectively. All splits are $106,000 and up.

Simcoe one features eight fillies with no particular shine this season, including the disappointing Kathy Parker. Unaware of which one or two the crowd will favor, we like Linda Toscano’s Dream Child. From post 1 she could take this field all the way from the top.

In Simcoe two the obvious choice would be Caprice Hill, regardless of post 9. However, some peppy gals are to her inside and one of them, Flowers N Songs, is certainly on target to qualify for an upset.

In the first Champlain 10 freshmen chase big money, as we do with our suggested contender, Cant U Spell. He is the only son of sterling sire Cantab Hall here and the fact that Takter does not handle him only helps point to a good price.

The second Champlain sends nine frosh trotters to the gate, with Ron Burke’s What The Hill (Muscle Hill) a most likely favorite. A good price may be offered by the 8 horse, who is the second of two Muscle Hill sons, Mountain Of Love, but is trained by Tony Alagna.


Marion Marauder will face eight other sophomores on Sept. 3 in the $500,000 Yonkers Trot at Yonkers. In the classic mile only two of eight met him in Hambletonian action, while the others race with lesser credentials. “Marion” gets a soft field, therefore, in this four-turn affair and he doesn’t have to deal with the toughest of his Hambo foes, Southwind Frank or Bar Hopping. Class-wise, Marion, Iron Mine Bucky and Lagerfeld (in that order) are the candidates for the win-place-show spots but it is no lock they will partner in exotics.

Cufflink Hanover, Hititoutofthepark and Steed have been strong outside of the Hambo crowd and could wind up sharing exotic honors (no less upsets) with the champ, should chaos ensue. Certainly any of those could pump up exotic prices. It is hard to believe Marion will be beaten, though, by any of them other than the ex-Hambo duo or that those two will not be at the wire next.


Eight glamour-boy pacers, led by Racing Hill, will go for $500,000 at Yonkers in the Messenger Stakes. This is one of the most imbalanced fields to be presented this season. Racing Hill, who has beaten the best in this division, faces seven inferior foes, all of which have been beaten by the colts Racing Hill has been beaten—even in the same races.

As boring as it may seem, on the four-turn mile at Yonkers, Racing Hill will most likely make seven colts chase him, sometimes making it look as if one or two has a chance, then drawing away to win and perhaps blow away a track record to boot. Looking for an upset? It’s Racing Hill’s race to lose, so if he, for some strange reason, blows his lead, sparks will fly. We like Western Fame for the longshot to do it. Jimmy Takter’s colt is getting better at the right time and could experience a very productive second half of the season. “Fame” is also a good exotic partner to the obvious.

Tony Alagna sends “Hill” along with Dr J Hanover, who has won six of seven starts and will attract some bets, as will Fernando Hanover and Don’tcallmefrancis, so we stick to our duo for profit’s sake.


If you are wagering on the Early Pick 4 on Saturday at Mohawk, here is our ticket numbers, which include the horses we find best in Race 4 through Race 7, as explained in the paragraphs to follow:

4,6/ 2,3/ 1,2, 8/ 1,5,7


The two-year-old spectacular Metro Pace, worth $661,000 is the main feature on Sept. 3’s huge Mohawk program. Ten colt pacers that earned their ways to the final through last week’s eliminations are fired up for the big prize.

None of the favorites won the three elims and two were huge priced victors. But we figure the best performance in all three miles came from Classic Pro in round one. He was 11-1 and missed by a length to the 54-1 wire-to-wire Windsong Napoleon.

Classic Pro left from post 8 for a good spot in third and saved ground. While the outer tier expanded, Classic Pro glided along as far back as fifth before he gained around 3 lengths to finish third behind Calvin K (5-1), who almost beat “Napolean.” Classic Pro gets the 7 hole in the final and should be dismissed by the public. He doesn’t need a special trip, he may have a lot more in him than has been displayed. Classic Pro, by the way, is the only son of Shadow Play—a productive sire—in the final.

The $50,000 Metro Consolation offers nine Metro rejects. Macs Jackpot should get the public’s interest enough to keep odds fair for Southwind General. This son of Sportswriter is in a fine spot to represent his productive sire.


The next “great lady” among frosh filly pacers will be determined in the final for the $427,000 Shes A Great Lady Final at Mohawk Saturday. The two elims, of course, were highlighted by our choice in the first, Thats The Ticket, winning at 58-1, with the second going to one of the division’s top children, Idyllic Beach. She is marvelous and will need a huge excuse to lose this as the mega-favorite. “Ticket” won strongly, with no traffic assistance, but it is too early to say she is as good or better than “Beach.”

Agent Q, on the other hand, was very good in the Beach elim, giving cover to that one and still gaining multi-lengths of ground. Indeed, Agent Q may be better than Beach and a price could be in the works for her here.


Soph Simcoe stakes, two for trotting colts and one for pacing fillies, all with six-figure purses, are also on the Sept. 3 Mohawk program.

Thre filly pace sends off 10 gals, topped by Darlinonthebeach (2) and her main competition Pure Country (1). This may be a match race, so to speak, or Darlinonthebeach will go even faster to win wire to wire. Pure Country may even be the favorite, since she has been taking on colts recently. It’s hard to imagine they would burn each other out but if “Darlin” is short for any reason, beware of LA Delight closing strongly.

Remnants of Hambo 91 are the stars of the other two Simcoes. In round one, Sutton is in a terrific spot to take advantage of the super Hambo field inclusion (he was third in the final) although he may very well be the public choice here. Waitlifter K could use the stretch to close on Sutton and Reigning Moni and supply a big number, as well. Outside of the Hambo guys, we are interested in Manofmanyimages, from post 8. The first-crop son of Manofmanymissions has been gallant and strong at Mohawk and since we have high hopes for this sire we think an upset could be in the works as this guy gets better. There is a triactor with some weight to it with those mentioned,

Simcoe three, the second for the glamour-boy trotters, may be dominated by Milligans School and could be overlooked by the crowd. The Hambo-91 alumni member (as is Jimmy William) leaves from post 8 and should deliver a forceful mile. Those two, in fact, should complete the exactor.

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.


9/2/16, Before I Die R2; Dash For The Cash R12
9/3/16, Dickies Motel R6; +Outlaw Goodnready R8
9/2/16, +Labatt Hanover R3; Noras Tanolt R5; Captain Primeau R6
9/5/16, Gimme The Pacifics R3; Bad Boy Matt R7; Jakes Spur R10
9/1/16, Fox Valley Eli R6
9/1/16, +Trigger R3
9/2/16, +Katies Beach R11
9/3/16, Lyons Snyder R12; Mr Carrots R13
9/1/16, +Play Again R10
9/2/16, +More Better R2
9/3/16, +Black Water Road R7; +Spartan Pride R8
9/4/16, Stakeout R8
9/2/16, Shezareadldeal R2
9/4/16, Misty On The Beach R7
9/1/16, Cover Model R5; +Extreme Justice R6;+Transit Hanover R7
9/3/16, +Shades Of Bay R3; +Muscolo R12
Red Mile
9/1/16, +Gs High Shooter R3; Docs Suzie R7
9/1/16, +Finale Seelster R10
9/3/16, +Lyons Meandragon R8
9/3/16, White Sportscoat R2; +Carolos Mittanna R9
9/2/16, Kesons Silhouette R4
9/3/16, +Rules Of The Road R2; Total Freedom R4

9/1/16, Devious Man R7
9/2/16, +Regil Elektra R6
9/5/16, +Rockin Winner R1; +Keystone Paula R5

Ray Cotolo contributes to this blog