Our suggested contenders were very much in the thick of all the exotic action this week. Here is how the week panned out: Thursday, Dec. 13 Another extended Power Plays at Philly presented a single, low-priced winner, included in four of five finishers necessary for the Jackpot Hi-5 (Pentafecta) and two of three for the trifecta. That was Race 5, the third leg of the Pick 3. We produced the winner, Miss Ruby ($3.20, $2.20, $2.10), missed the place horse, had the show with Deacons Valley ($3.80), the fourth finisher, Panamanian Hanover (2-1), and the fifth finisher, Zette Starling (35-1). There was a Pentafecta carryover of $1,221.42, with a four of five pay off of $46.38. Moving backwards, the second leg, Race 4, was won by one of the public choices. We were third with Chas Hanover ($3.80), which went off at a surprising 11-1. We finished fourth with Boinganator (5-2) and fifth with Zagstar (30-1). The first leg gave players the second and third finishers in the trifecta—Dark Pool ($3.20, $2.20) and Run And Tell Pap ($2.10). A 9-2 shot won the event and the trifecta came back $87.00. Friday, Dec. 14 A Friday feature at Cal-Expo helped the toteboard to light up. Unfortunately, our longshot place horse, Twin B Delightful ($28.80, $13.00) was beaten a hair by a 45-1 shot. Our place horses continue to produce huge prices on their own, as well as they continue to pump up exotic prices when they finish behind a public choice. Two selected features at Yonkers failed to hit the board. We finished sixth with Rock It Scott (4-1), beaten by a 21-1 shot. We finished eighth, behind the field throughout the mile, with Twist Of Fate (60-1). Saturday, Dec. 15 A single-race Power Plays again defied the percentages for favorites at Northfield, this week in Race 3. Available were the exacta, trifecta and superfecta. We delivered the winner, unfortunately the favorite—Mi Amanda Juanita ($2.80, $2.40, $2.40 ok). The place and show finishers were not on our list. The fourth member of the superfecta combo, Quatra Folium (87-1), was one of our quartet of contenders. The remaining two onour list were Roberts New Life (43-1), who finished sixth, and Rocksy’s Way (5-1), which finished seventh. The place horse in the three exotics was a 4-1 shot and the show horse was a 129-1 shot. Our two contributors were a part of the $189.84 superfecta. TwinSpires Harness Blog: Severe Handicapping For Harness Bettors H2W LIST RESULTS 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 40 active horses (an xx-percent win hit rate and a xx-percent ATB [in the money] 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 Winners Danish Durango, $7.40, $3.00, $3.00 ok, Philly Holdingallthecards, $3.40, $2.80, $2.40, Dayton Climate Change, $2.70, $2.20, $2.10, Monticello Seconds Dali Cat, $11.40, $4.90 (Exacta $46.60), Western Fair Mercurio N, $7.10, $3.40 (Exacta $22.80), Monticello Royal Reception, $5.80, $3.80, Scarborough Master Switch, $5.70, $4.10 (Exacta $16.20), Western Fair Odds On Stephanie, $4.30, $2.80, Mohaek Polak A, $3.40, Pompano Lifeontherange, $2.60, $2.60 Thirds Retail Marc Up, $6.60, Saratoga Fast Date, $4.60, Dayton Ville Valo, $4.20, Freehold Art Genta, $3.00, Cal-Expo News & Notes Here is exciting news. Courtly Choice’s ownership group announced that the dynamo pacer he will race in 2019, when he is four. Co-owner/breeder Joe Thomson said Courtly Choice will be entered into several stakes in the upcoming season. Courtly Choice’s trainer, Blake MacIntosh, had mixed feelings about standing the pacer at stud and prompted the decision to race him instead. “We decided to take the initiative to support Jeff Gural with the increase in Meadowlands purses,” said MacIntosh. At Cal-Expo on Dec. 14, the harness-racing community celebrated one of California’s essential movers and shakers, the late Alan Horowitz, with the $20,000 Alan Horowitz Memorial. When the robust era of harness on the West Coast began to falter, Alan was a major fource keeping it alive. In 1994, he was instrumental in bringing harness back to Cal-Expo and was also a successful general manager. He retired in 2013 and continued to stay in touch with the sport. Alan, who passed away last year at 72, was a personal friend of ours, and a major source for keeping the East Coast up to date with news about the meets and the horsemen. Pure Country, the first female pacer to win divisional honors at two, three and four, has been retired. She will be bred in 2019. Earning over $2.6 million with 27 wins from 63 starts, Pure Countryy capped her career in the $175,000 Free for All Mare Pace at the Meadowlands on Nov. 24. She won the Breeders Crown at two and four as well as other major events, including the Fan Hanover, James Lynch and Matron. Her mark of 1:48 in a qualifier is the fastest qualifying mile in harness racing history. The Dec. 31 blog will present the TwinSpires harness-racing annual analysis of winners from all of our 2018 weekly harness blogs. We categorize only winners that have paid off at 4-1 and up in the order of highest win prices. One list includes winners from only feature races; the other list includes the H2W list winners. Also in that extended blog we award for the TwinSpires Harness Players’ Horse of the Year. Each season the horse earning the title comes from either our features lists or the horses-to-watch lists (H2W) and is given the title by being the highest paying winner from all our posts of the year. This year’s annual roundup will be in the Dec. 31 blog (coincidentally the last day of 2018). Extraordinary Extras Indulge in my monthly column, Alternative Actions, at Harness Racing Update