The lucrative Pennsylvania All Stars (PAAS) series offers a quartet of $30,000 miles for glamour-girl trotters on Tuesday, June 12. The “Oaks” eligible list practically empties into these races, with 23 femmes after the best of purse money as the Hambletonian Trail grows shorter.
The fewest eligible fillies in the four PAAS affairs is the first; they are Southwind Angelica, Basquait, Velvatter and Megadolce. Five others make up the field.
Pocono’s 9 post is in the first tier, or Megadolce would be a true standout here. Though she may be a must-add in exotics, JimmyTakter’s Basquiat on the inside has a strong edge in her second start at three. She will, though, get lots of action. This leaves us with Trond Smedshammer’s Velvatter. In her fourth start, Trond gets a good spot and should offer a better price than the aforementioned. In an exacta with Megadolce, there should be a decent payoff.
Six of nine in PAAS’s division two go to the gate but one of them is the mighty Manchego. She has only won her first race at three but the buzz and the predictions for success for Takter’s super trotter dare to be compromised. She will be the undisputed favorite here, as most will expect her to take control of these three turns in the mountains. Unless you key her for single-race exotics it will be tough to beat her. Should a trip benefit any entry enough to nail Manchego, it should go to Vivacious Allie. Ake Svanstedt’s filly is good enough to go the length of the “Trail” and may be good enough to take Manchego all the way to August.
PAAS round three also features nine at the gate, though here only one filly is not a hopeful (Hey Judy Judy). Piranha Fury, the top earner so far in this group, gets a good inside post and will get good backing. Takter’s Dab Hanover opens her soph season. She was a $149,000-plus winner at two, the most of any in this group at two, and will get strong attention from bettors.
Julie Miller and company are sending good sophs out this season, as is Follow Streak, a winner of two of three, with a third to make her tote presence perfect. She should be offering odds higher than her chances, considering the bettors will also hit on Bill’s Lady and What A Knockout. The latter would be a good exacta partner for Follow Streak.
In the program’s last PAAS, five of nine are aiming at August and two are top frosh earners. Lily Stride ($256,000-plus) and Phaetosive ($259,000) have just started on their soph campaign but the latter is burdened with a 9-post start, while the former gets post 2. Both will attract bettors regardless. Takter’s Bella Glos will also take cash, having won her first soph event and even with post 8, three-for-four-winning Live Laugh Love will compete for dollars.
Here is a shot at a second-time soph starter, Svanstedt’s Hey Livvy from post 1. Considering the “knowns” as mentioned, this one has two things on her side. First, she is not proven anything in one race and may be ready to go for dough in her secound outing. Second, if she is going to become a serious Oaks contender, she had better hurry making some money. Pressure doesn’t faze Ake, so he will be sending Hey Livvy to present her best for the biggest part of the purse. Such a score would bring a backer a very good return.
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