Short Winners Trounce Winter Storm; $14 Tops Win Prices; Five Exacta Partners With $41 High

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March 4th, 2018

Winter Storm Riley kept its promise to do a lot of damage up the North American East Coast with snow, rain and fierce winds, delivering March like a proverbial lion. One of the lesser affects of Riley to the landscape was the cancellation of racing programs. Riley didn’t shut down the entire weekend racing as it began to sweep from south to north quickly. We lost a few features and the horses-to-watch (H2W) list was impacted with cancellations pf programs at Freehold, the Meadowlands, Saratoga and Yonkers.

Here are the slings and arrows of our less-than-outrageous fortune, as reported chronologically.

Thursday, March 1

We offered a Partners For Picks at Saratoga harness and just as we had the week before, a Pick 3 came in very short, considering the winners and a scratch for us. The first leg was won by a 4-1 shot and the other two legs went to public choices.

We were seventh in the first leg with Back The Bank (28-1). In the second leg our choice, Striking Star, scratched. We offered two contenders in leg three. Seven Roses ($2.40) finished third and Time Is Fleeting (8-1) was fifth.

Friday, March 2

The afternoon’s features at Saratoga were cancelled due to Riley. In the evening we won a small victory at Miami with Honey B ($3.20, $2.60, $2.20).

Saturday, March. 3

One winner on the evening surfaced. Our forecast for Parkhill Lancelot ($5.60, $3.40, $2.40) at Miami was much more generous than the public offered. The majority of bettors obviously felt more strongly about our winner than did we.

At Yonkers we were very confident about a contentious Race 3, so we reached for some value and made it a Power Plays affair.

The winner was not one of our contenders but shared the favorite spot with our Western Hill, who finished a poor seventh. All we contributed to the exotics was the third spot on the triple with Bettorever ($3.30). Our chunky possibilities failed; they were Azul Pool (11-1), who finished sixth and Bullet Bob (49-1) who came home fifth.

All losers in our selected features appear the following week in the H2W list except any that raced in a feature after already listed once on the H2W.

TwinSpires Harness Blog:
Severe Race Handicapping For Harness Bettors


The H2W results list across-the-board prices. Also, exactas listed are included when a H2W horse finishes second with a race favorite or the first two finishers making up the exacta are H2W horses (an asterisk appears when both horses were listed to complete a cold exacta). The note “ok” determines that prices published are correct even when a show price exceeds a place price or any or all of the prices are the same. This week, there were 33 active horses (a 9-percent win hit rate and a 39-percent ATB [across-the-board] hit rate).

Please note that some H2W results reflect win, place, show and exotic results occurring by press time but some horses race after the blog is posted (we list them the following week) It is up to you to follow horses that have not performed before this weekly review


Uva Hanover, $14.00, $7.00, $4.80, Yonkers
Winning Lyric, $8.30, $6.30, $3.40, Woodbine
Listentoherheart, $4.60, $3.00, $2.80, Cal-Expo


Trixie Dust, $9.40, $7.60 (Exacta $41.60), Meadows
Gliding Senorita, $6.10, $4.20 (Exacta $20.80), Flamboro
Casimir Oppee, $6.00, $5.10 (Exacta $23.40), Flamboro
Hardts Or Bettor, $4.40, $4.40 ok, Buffalo
Steuben Cindy, $3.80, $2.60 (Exacta $12.80), Northfield
Rockin Machine, $3.60, $2.20 (Exacta $12.20), Meadowlands
Caviart Scarlett, $3.20, $2.80, Northfield


Audrey Anna, $3.00, Northfield
Cadet, $3.00, Cal-Expo
St Lads Gidget, $2.60, Northfield

News & Notes

Woodbine Entertainment reports that 79 sophomore-colt pacers have been nominated to the 35th edition of the North America Cup. The $1-million “Cup” is Canada’s richest harness race and this year’s edition is scheduled for Saturday, June 16, at Mohawk. The eliminations take place on June 9. This year’s number of nominated soph pacers is up by 19 over last year’s total of 60. The number of 79 nominated sophs is the highest for the the Cup since 2011, when there were 83.

Among the well-known frosh-turned-sophs eligibles in 2018 are Stay Hungry and Lost In Time. The award-winning colts squared off competitively on multiple occasions at two. Others recognizable for their freshman-earning figures are Hayden Hanover, Springsteen, Shnitzledosomethin, Hayden Hanover and Seeing Eye Single.

Rosecroft is open and driver Frank Milby has made the Maryland track his latest home. On Feb. 28’s program he made a terrific flat-bet profit. Betting the horses he drove on the 13-race program cost $24.00 ($2.00 for a dozen races). Using no other handicapping element, Milby won half of his drives and returned $62.20, a bit less than 3-1.

World champion pacer Sassa Hanover was retired and will begin a broodmare career. The Ron Burke-trained Sassa Hanover won some major events, including the Matron Stakes, divisions of the Bluegrass and International Stallion Stakes, as well as multiple New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) and was second in the Breeders Crown at two. At three, Sassa Hanover won the Jugette, Courageous Lady, a division of the Adioo Volo, multiple NYSS and finished second in the Breeders Crown. She also finished second in the Breeders Crown at four. The daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven retires with 23 wins in 81 starts and lifetime earnings of more than $1.2 million. She is being bred to Sweet Lou first.

Extraordinary Extras

Indulge in many standardbred topics at my Hoof Beats blog titled Vast Performances.

And check my monthly column, Alternative Actions, at Harness Racing Update