This week’s features continue with many divisions cutting through the thick spring weather for ever-growing purses. We begin on Thursday and go through Sunday (note that our Weekend Update blog will be posted on the night of Sunday, May 26). Sophomore trotters take the spotlight in the Hambletonian Trail blog, making for many betting opportunities we love sharing with TwinSpires bettors.
With a 52-plus percent across-the-board hit rate last week, TwinSpires exclusive horses-to-watch (H2W) list is cooking, suggesting horses for bettors to use in all wagers. You best pay attention to horses on the list. Do your own handicapping and then consider our H2W selections.
GO ON BB CONCLUDES
On Thursday, May 23 at Hoosier, The Go On B B series ends with a 10-horse field of conditioned pacers in a $18,000 final. The best of the bunch are here, led by Lewayne Miller’s top money-earner, the undefeated Tell Me Its Summer.
Unarguably the favorite, “Summer” could be considered a key-win bet for exotics, which may be the only hope for any profit in this final. His other mare, Madelines Craycray, on the other hand, may not even make the exotics grid. She is among three winless mares coming into the final.
Deserving of a role in exotics behind Summer is This Peach Rocks. Though she has the 9 hole, outside at Hoosier, she comes off a sterling win and has had all of her 2019 success in her most recent two events. Also worthy of boosting an exotic price is the addition of Lady Capulet, the best of Virgil Morgan, Jr.’s trio making the final.
The $15,000 Captain Marvel Final, another distaff series conclusion, is on the May 23 program, also with 10 at the gate. The race offers an obvious favorite—Miss Fire—and obvious value in one other contender. Making her second start of the season, Wheels Up Z Tam, from the Jamie Macomber barn, deserves a leap-of-faith wager to upset as she will be forced to do better than her best at three so far and may rise to the occasion at a great price. Along with probable second-choice It Can Happen, the two could dowse the hopes of Miss Fire.
OVER HAL OVER DALE
Hoosier hosts the $18,000 Hal Dale Final on May24 for 10 conditioned pacers that have partaken in the series. One of the past surprises, which we gave to bettors, ER Sam, a $49-1 winner, is in the field and not likely to offer anywhere near those odds. He will be respected far more than that, though not the main choice.
The likely public choice is Little Rocket Man, who is five wins for six starts this season. We will, however, suggest serious contention from Lewayne Miller’s Rockin Medicine. This event is his second race of the season. His first found him in the place spot. He has every good chance to upset the aforementioned, as well as Rockn TJ, the other obvious crowd-appealing entry.
Yonkers hosts two of its trademark soph-pacing finals on May 25. The first is for the fillies, the $149,234 Lismore, with eight at the gate from their earned elim finishes.
No doubt the favoritism will fall upon Queen Of The Pride. She has been virtually perfect leading the division for two months. Most, if not all of these, have failed crossing her path for this event and in other events before she shipped to New York.
She may be a great exotic key, since she may dominate the group for the biggest pot yet, but you have to use some outsiders to pump up the prices. Annie Hill may go off far greater than last week, when she won, because she is strapped to the 8 hole. A good price on her will pay off if she overcomes the post. Another outsider is Rock N McRoll, who deserves a shot at improving in her third race of the early season.
ART ROONEY COLTS
The $380,000 Art Rooney Final is the main feature at Yonkers on May 25. Eight take flight, with two of the top elim colts launching from the outside posts. Blood Money and Air Force Hanover leave from posts 7 and 8, respectively, and that will affect the race in many ways. Hopefully, it will give us a shot at an upset.
Last week we backed Branquinho at 13-1 in an elim and finished fourth, but not without great merit. He had the toughest trip in a mile where Blood Money lost without a good excuse to Bettor’s Wish, who won an easy front-pacing mile. With the most favorable scenario being an edge for Branquinho’s trip this time, we endorse him to win for trainer Ray Schnittker.
The Betsy Ross ($100,00) annual mares invitational is on the Sunday, May 26, afternoon Philly program. Eight familiar ladies go a-pacing. The biggest and best, with little contention is Shartin N. She won the Matchmaker Final after dominating the mares at Yonkers. Here she has some newer foes, first timers in the division, like Youaremycandygirl and Caviart Ally. Also, Tequila Monday, spotless in six this season, will dare to threaten.
Caviart Ally looks much better than Youaremycandygirl and could be a cash cow for Brett Pelling in the division. She is in a great spot to show the connections of Shartin N it will be a longer season than expected. For bettors, a good price on “Ally” in this race, may be the biggest one in a long time if she downs Shartin N.
TO THE MAX
The $100,000 Maxie Lee Memorial is also on the Philly program May 26. The event welcomes hot trotter Trolley, opportunity-fast Homicide Hunter and a few other very wealthy males. Looking for a price here is not so hard if you go against those two and take advantage of the 8-hole launching Cruzado Dela Noche. That 8 hole may turn off some bettors but the International Trot-winning stalwart will be strong no matter his trip and closing on this bunch could be easier for him than any of the others. The price should be right.
THE BARRY BOYS
Older male pacers go for $100,000 on the same Philly program Sunday in the Commodore Barry Invitational. There are good cases to be made for most in the eight-horse field. Do not measure these by speed badges; any one of them could smash a record mile here with the right conditions. It is difficult to predict a favorite, as well, so we will take the season’s debut for Western Joel our choice for price and purpose. He may not need a race to start 2019 with a win and under any circumstances he would be threats to all in the field.
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.
5/24/19, Real Bigg R2; Aint No Mo R6; May Day Jojo R9
5/24/19, Keystone Dalton R4; Empire Earl N R5; Royal Coutier R6
5/23/19, +Yourtheoohtomyahh R5
5/27/19, +Sicily R4
5/24/19, Little Bita Sass R1
5/23/19, Last Mission R7; Centalta Power R9
5/24/19, Feherty R1
5/24/19, +Lazzaro R5; +JL Cruze R6
5/25/19, Major Marcus R6
5/24/19, Epic Union R5; Macadoodledoo R6
5/23/19, +Major Hill R10
5/24/19, +Quatrain Blue Chip R2
5/25/19, +Better Up R7
5/23/19, College Hanover R4; +Insane Propane R6; +David’s Draw R7
5/25/19, Beautiful Brew R6; Little Big R7; Lovem And Liam ae R8
5/24/19, Major Moolah R2; Play For Keeps R3; Black Daniels R8
5/23/19, Casa Palmera R2; Undertaker R5; Donna Victoria R7; TW Lauxmont R8
5/23/19, +Tease Hanover R4; Scholz R7; +Betterb Chevron N R8; Rockin Desire R9
5/24/19, +Akron R1; +Iron Dome R2
5/25/19, Drawing Dragons R5
5/26/19, +Jezzy’s Legacy R7; +Ma Was Right R7; +Fraulein Blucher R8
5/25/19, Officer Jim R2; Brooklyn Moonshine R3; Marktentwentyseven R5; Bettor’s Promise R6; Nurse Nattie R7
5/23/19, +Brenda’s Got It R3; +Frenzie R10
5/25/19, Deli-craze R1; Royal Reception R7; Dr. C’s Z Tam R9
5/23/19, +Rockin Mercedes R6
5/25/19, Anarchy Hanover R13; Jimtastic R14
5/23/19, Crystalline R9
5/25/19, Guccio ATM R3
5/23/19, Master Of Excuses R2
5/24/19, +Jag Out R4; Joe Hill R9
5/25/19, +The Real One R4