Profit Hunting Harness Horses On A Stormy Winter Weekend

Profile Picture: Frank Cotolo

January 21st, 2016

A huge storm is predicted in the Mid-Atlantic this weekend, with a forecast that includes towering snow on the landscape. At press time we are disregarding the meteorologists and covering harness racing territory as if all things were climate-equal, so to speak.

There has been and continues to be some fine wagering opportunities in the season barren of high-profile stakes stock. Miami Valley has been chock full of overnights with full fields, making for some exciting Pick-4 prices. We continue to contribute to the exotic tickets our readers may construct. Freehold’s weekly afternoon programs are plentiful and we have already produced profits from them. As well, the winter wonderland of Canadian harness racing has been cooperative from late last year to early this year, with accomplishments in the west at Fraser to the right coast at Charlottetown, Flamboro and Woodbine.

Moving on again this week, we offer probabilities across the harness raceway communities through our chosen features and our exclusive contenders on our H2W (horses-to-watch list). Twinspires unique harness feature delivers horses that play important roles across the board and in single- and multi-race exotics. They come straight from our personal researcher of races across North America. As always, we wish you luck.

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 7
Thursday, Jan. 21

The X Horse was off a month between years, fitting in the same class when returning and lumbering on the outside in a crawl of a mile at 26-1. His foes here include unsuccessful droppers in class, including a strange awakening last race from Great Soul, who starts to his left in post 5. The X Horse may be the X factor for price with a sharp performance here. (This is the beginning of a Pick-4 stream.)

Freehold/Race 9
Thursday, Jan. 21

Keystone Camaro is not the morning-line favorite and we can only hope that is how he remains, since he is the severe threat in this event to go wire to wire and win. The support for a few others may confuse that probable. Though he is tough to leave out in any ticket, another threat here is the outsider, Free Tie, from post 8. With a good start or a great early position to stalk, Free Tie could overcome the track’s dreaded launching spot and blast the toteboard. (This is leg three of a Pick-4 stream; make note that H2W entry, The Life Boat, appears in the last leg.).

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

Meadows/ Race 6
Friday, Jan. 22

Though the mare Massive Looker leaves from post 8, that could be the worst obstacle she needs fo overcome. Aside from jumping, staying on gait may mean she is headed for a win at a terrific price. Two breaks excuse the only bad performances she shows around this class since November of 2015. A well-bred four-year-old, she has earned about as much as the best in this field. (This is the first leg of a 50-cent Pick 3.)

Meadows/ Race 8
Friday, Jan. 22

This last leg of the Pick 3 also offers a strong contender from the 8 hole in Artsmah. A beaten favorite in a reasonably close conditional class, Artsmah has the strength to leave and close quickly, so the post position is just about moot. His morning line indicates the best he could do would make him third choice to horses with only an edge in posts. To add some juice to this race, Gibbs has every reason to be in the mix and could contribute to a mighty exotic, as well as keep the Pick 3 in treasure’s territory.

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

Charlottetown/ Race 10
Saturday, Jan. 23

This triactor-(triple)-wagering race can promise a very good payoff with our outside contenders. The public should bet in the range of the morning line, leaving at least two horses out of their loop. One of those is Ideal Lifestyle. A break as the top choice at this level last time ruined his attempt at two straight. He won’t be given that much support here (6-1 morning line). The other is Hurrah (10-1 morning line). Hurrah was scheduled to this level on Jan. 9 but scratched “lame.” In compatible claiming company last December, he was racing better than his odds. This drop could put him in the exotic mix and help pump up the payoff. Note that Red Magician is in the H2W list and certainly could complete the triactor, as well as Bad Date (5-2 morning line) could.

Miami Valley / Pick 4 / Races 9-12
Saturday, Jan. 23, 2016

Miami Valley provides yet another interesting late Pick-4 sequence for their Saturday night program, with plenty of profit potential in play.

Conditioned pacers go in the opening split with a wide-open field of eight. With that, value opportunities are present with two pacers, J’s Six Pak Attack and Cheyenne Outlaw. Making a slight jump in class, J’s Six Pak Attack recently finished third against non-winners of $8,000 off an aggressive on-the-lead effort following a fourth in the Open the week before. Cheyenne Outlaw drops straight out of the Open ranks into this event, finishing second in his first start of the season off a pocket trip. Both of these pacers will likely be threats towards the lead, so expect any move from them to be a sweeping one come the final quarter.

Late-closing action continues in the next event, gathering nine pacers for a $15,000 tag. A trio of contenders are involved here, the first being Roll’em Up. Claimed by Andy Shetler in his first start since shipping from Freehold, he attempted to wire the field from post 8 in round one of this series. Obviously, drawing better this week, he should be a stronger factor on the lead. Two more pricey competitors here are In Theory and Falcon Justice. In Theory is an interesting contender, as from post 9 he used most of his horsepower to catch the field at the half by gaining 8 lengths and four positions. Despite his better draw he has struggled to step up to this group, which makes Falcon Justice a more reliable contender. Claimed after finishing sixth off a first-over trip as the favorite, he makes his third start this season off of two good performances. He’ll likely make his move later in the mile, as he’ll attempt to ride cover due to his outside draw.

The Open Handicap is yet again included in this sequence and its main contenders are, again, Fancy Creek Elusiv and Talk Strategy. The two raced competitively, with Fancy Creek Elusiv making his move off the pylons and Talk Strategy attempting to press the pace first over. Both, though, could not catch Astereo’s Love, who drew clear by about 2 lengths from the field. Since Fancy Creek Elusiv draws better and Talk Strategy is poised for an off-the-helmet type trip, these two are again major threats. They are both listed in the H2W since they are making their second feature appearances after losing.

The final leg gathers an average group of conditioned pacers, making this race either a complete toss up or a definitive event between three horses: The Riddler, Schoolkids and probable-favorite Neat, with Neat being the least likely to provide value of the trio. Starting from the rail, The Riddler makes his seasonal debut off a 1:57.3 qualifier that followed a lame scratch on Dec. 5. Before the end of last season he showed that he could compete with this level of pacers, so his qualifier is taken as a good effort and he should be involved in his return. Schoolkids, however, makes a slight move up in class after finishing second against non-winners of $4,000, scratching sick in his previous start. The colt owned, trained, and driven by provisional driver Brady Galliers benefits from a better draw as well as unknown connections, so this sharp pacer may have an inflated price.

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.


1/23/16, Western Alumni R2; American Force R4; Bad Bad Boy R9; Racsan Steve R12

Cal Expo
1/23/16, Lodi Bank Robber R5; Seawind Allegra R9; +Midnight Destroyer R13
1/24/16, +Twice The Ruckus R1; Rag Doll R2; +Codey Shark R5; Gram Rules R9; +Bruisin N Cruisin R12

1/23/16, +Hopedale Paris R1; +Night Talker R1; +Red Magician R10; +Capitalism R13

1/22/16, +Hook Line N Minker R5; +Fast Lane Firebolt R9; Beren Hanover R10

1/21/16, +Pacific Escape R2; +The Life Boat R10
1/22/16, Nutmegs Dancer ae R9; Rosslyn Chapel R9

1/20/16, +Da Terror R6
1/21/16, Richess Nestor R4

1/22/16, Bloomfieldanifly R4

1/22/16, Rompaway Gypsy R2; Chip Again R11

1/23/16, +Pq Three R7; +Fancy Creek Elusiv R11; +Talk Strategy R11; +Kiss Of Terror R12; +Sunday Poker R13
1/24/16, +Flying Rocket R2

1/21/16, Mr Invincible R8
1/22/16, Southwind Ike R5; Yankovitch Hanover R7
1/25/16, Ability To Attack R4

1/23/16, Kickoff Hanover R1

Western Fair
1/22/16, Watt A Funny Face R11

1/22/16, Scary Good R3; Wildcat Beauty R5; Steves Legacy R6; Boat House Row R9
1/23/16, Lets Wait And See R5; Bilbo Hanover R7; Stature Seelster R10

1/22/16, +Ella V Horse R8
1/23/16, Snap To It A R4; Hugh Hefner N R8
1/25/16, +Major Trick R5; Cheyenne Jeffrey R10; +Grand Master R10

Ray Cotolo contributes to each edition