This time of year it’s not unlike us to write a weather report along with our wagering advice. Still, the sweeping cancellations the weather provoked last weekend affected every one but one of our selected features. Thanks to some quick thinking and crafty handicapping we switched everything to the track with the only unaffected race, Cal-Expo, and plucked out a profit.

This week is forecast as a relatively normal few days in January, so we’ll pick up where we left off before the North American barrage of frozen air and move forward in another year of the TwinSpires harness-blog series.

Our mid-January 2018 blog offers selected features and rounds of Partners For Picks (PFP) and Power Plays. As well, the continuing, popular weekly H2W (the horses-to-watch) list accompanies the highlights. Do your own handicapping and then consider our H2W selections. TwinSpires handicapping blogs for any breed present the best wagering investments in the cyber world.   

FEATURES~FEATURES~FEATURES

Freehold / Race 6
Thursday, Jan. 11

Our main choice last week in the cancelled Pick 3, Super S Yzerman gets our call again in this similar conditioner. The morning line (ML) has increased with this group (from 6-1 to 15-1), making the bet look more profitable under similar circumstances. As usual, the ML choices are stepping down from tougher conditions, though that factor is untrustworthy. Super S Yzerman’s last races of 2017 are very good, with a tough-trip excuse for finishing sixth two back and an easy mile finishing best-of-the-rest at 31-1. He won a few notches down in class three back and honestly stepped up. A Pick 4 starts here and the usual single-race exotics are in play.

FEATURES~FEATURES~FEATURES

Freehold / Race 10
Thursday, Jan. 11

From the same cancelled Pick 3 last week, we will go again with Letmetakeyoudancin. The public will be sucked into the rail horse, an ML choice dropping after a loss after stepping up from a loss. Rosiemunn was scheduled last week too and returns here to her check-cashing form at this level but as, perhaps, the second public choice. Anywhere near her 12-1 ML, Letmetakeyoudancin has strong positives. Toss out her Dec. 26 Monticello chase and her Dec. 7 Meadowlands fiasco and make note of the change to trainer David Strong, who tested his new property at Monticello in a step up causing her to go off at 80-1. She is perfectly placed here to become a winner paying very well.

POWER PLAYS

Flamboro / Race 8
Thursday, Jan. 11

An exacta, trifecta and superfecta are featured in this conditioned trot that launches a Pick 4. In alphabetic order, here are our four contenders for exotic plays.

Hetties Commander was closing quickly in his recent effort at this level and has been knocking on the door heavily to get a score since dropping from battles with better.

Angels Kid was smoked for three calls last week and has been well supported in his recent trio of efforts. He was a favorite status three back. He’s not been a winning kind of trotter in a while but one good trip will get him a photographer’s meeting.

Leonardo Da Lindy appeared once on the H2W then took around eight months off for health reasons, according to the officials. Instead of using his second turn on the H2W we are adding him here because he is fresh and his Woodbine qualifier was a good prep, with no intent to do anything but make the qualifying time to get back in action.

Regardless of leaving from post 8, Gronk is the spoiler and may not have a great shot at a win, no less being a member of a decent paying exotic. He was a big favorite last out at Rideau-Carleton, dropping from Woodbine conditioners that were way over his head. And don’t you just love his name? 

FEATURES~FEATURES~FEATURES

Meadowlands / Race 5
Friday, Jan. 12

This conditioned trot seems to focus upon early favorites dropping into the class. We will focus upon It’s Chocolate Time, who was one of our contenders last week in a race falling victim to the weather with a cancellation. We supported this guy before, during other seasons, and his only true fault is a hereditary malady to gallop. He’s a son of Chocolatier, a dynamic trotter who has passed on some gait problems (he was strapped in post 10 in a Hambletonian final and finished sharply). However, when his progeny race smoothly they are super and that can be seen clearly in the past-performance lines. We pick up our support for It Chocolate Time here, where he takes a small dip in class after racing with a tad tougher at Philly.

POWER PLAYS

Miami Valley / Race 3
Friday, Jan. 12

We’ll hand out four suggested contenders for your single-race exotic combos since the usual two combos are joined by a superfecta. Here they are in post-position order:

Karefree Kara was one of our Dayton successes and regardless of her recent failure, mostly due to a tiring duel late in the mile, she is raring to pick up her victory stream under new supervision. From the inside and without major dueling, she should hold off all comers here.

Cas Art Apparel is a key to a larger exotic price in each category with a 12-1 ML. Her poor finishes at Dayton in December have solid excuses; she raced well and with some back class to testify she is not really stepping up much, there is a big chance she can even win the thing.

ME Radar Girl raced a lot of long, hard miles at Northfield, where in a company not unlike this she burrowed to the finish line. She won’t be such a longshot, especially coming from the Burke barn but you cannot count her out of exotic action.

Love To Roll steps up after a pair of wins at Dayton, where she received a lot of support through the meet. But the tag price is worth it, so the hell with the step-up factor; she needs to be considered for an exotic spot in almost any race she would pace on this night, at least.

PARTNERS FOR PICKS

Charlottetown / Race 8
Saturday, Jan. 13

Here’s a challenge—a Pick 3 at Charlottetown. We offer some suggested contenders that hopefully boost the payoff if they live up to our praise.

Leg one, Race 8
Cougar Gal impressed some bettors when coming from Truro but let them down with a sub-par performance at 5-1. Then she returned and fired well at 2-1, failing due to lost ground from an outside trip in a claimer. She’s back in a good spot to class up her act for 2018.

Leg two, Race 9
A tight field of five goes in this competitive Preferred event with the outside two having the most experience at the top level. The speed is consistently on the inside with Drivingthedragon N but the price should be with Smiley Bayama. He steps up after a win in a conditioned and may find a great suck-along journey behind the aforementioned. A pricey winner in this slim field would pump up the “Pick” considerably.

Leg three, Race 10
Ideal Space could replicate her bright Dec. 9 win at this level (and from this starting point). She was 9-1 as she began a productive few races, which wound up losing to a few in this field in a heavier condition. But she beat ones like that last time when she won by 7 lengths with a big brush that seems possible again considering two of her foes here leave from the outside and usually bid hard in the first panels for the top.

POWER PLAYS

Meadowlands / Race 6
Saturday, Jan. 13

The three single-race exotics are available in this conditioned pace for mares. Here are four contenders we hope may not look obvious to the public. Consider adding them to whatever exotics you choose (and win, place and show). They appear in post-position order.

UF Dragon’s Queen was very good against older late last year at Philly and Pocono and we feel she deserves a bigger chance than expected by the public. It’s difficult not to figure her in the mix of exotics based on her late-season experience in Pennsylvani and her first mile in New Jersey.

Lady Of Heaven has been racing better than her odds and fits well into this category after a few check-cashing experiences at the Meadowlands. She just turned four and comes from a Rock N Roll Heaven bloodline, her connections being that sire’s as well and looking for a big season among her new division.

Carobbean Pacetry steps up and down in accordance to recent earnings that meet conditions and here her class should show prominently, though it is difficult to forecast the crowd’s opinion. She seems very sharp now and we can only hope her outside post turns off some bettors for the sake of a higher price.

Cousin Mary has failed one of a pair of miles as a favorite but stepped up and was still strong. She has sharp form since last November, using a versatile style to compensate for some bad trips and tough posts. The 10 post here could actually fit her closing style best.



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.

H2W LIST

Buffalo
1/12/18, Northern Matador R1; Heavenly Way R6; Livefreeordiehard R8

Cal-Expo
1/12/18, +Deweydidonegood R1; +Fire Dance R4; +Miss Banjolina R4; +Scary Harry R9; +Windsong Lindsay R11
1/13/18, +Cowboy Dirtyboots R3; +Santanna Sam R3; +Cantholdmebackmack R6; +Musician R11

Charlottetown
1/13/18, +American Captain R1; +Political Crisis R4

Dover
1/11/18, +Missile J R10; +JJ Flynn R13

Flamboro
1/11/18, +Fool With Joe R5; Tenor Duharas R6
1/14/18, Little Quick R8

Fraser
1/12/18, Wabash Cannonball R1; Prodigal R8; Millbanks Bart R10; Brand Security R11

Freehold
1/11/18, +Ralbar R2; +Future Flight R8; +Fat Boy R8
1/12/18, +Noras Tandt R2

Hawthorne
1/12/18, Scooter R1; Dali Special R4
1/13/18, +Soap Suds R4

Meadowlands
1/13/18, +Yankee Artillery R3; +Deepfave Hanover R13; +Fox Valley Cadet R14; Fly’n With Royalty R14

Meadows
1/11/18, +Southwind Warsaw R6

Miami
1/12/18, Brando R1; Firstup R5; Rockinthepines R7; +Smokey Joes Café R9
1/14/18, +Art Critic R3; Cantab Lindy R11

Monticello
1/11/18, +Granite State R6; Joe Says Go R9
1/15/18,

Pompano
1/13/18, River Valley R3; Anderlecht R6; Dynamic Rayzer R7
1/14/18, Doo Wop Hanover R5; Sucrose Hanover R6; Drachan Hanover R8

Woodbine
1/11/118, +Payback R2

Yonkers
1/12/18, +Miss Irish Rose A R5; Sassa Hanover R6; +Chevals Clivesdale R9