All fields feature Hambletonian-eligible horses.
The pre-Hambletonian’s divisions’ stakes, the Del Miller Memorial for the fillies and Stanley Dancer Memorial for the colts, are carved into two divisions each on July 13, as the “Trail” narrows en route to August’s first Saturday.
The first Del Miller split, worth $124,000, is a field of six, led by Evident Beauty. She has mastered the division in three of four starts and that single loss won’t keep bettors from making her the best here. That being said, Cloud Nine Fashion has improved and could be a challenge here, if not in the “Oaks,” so you may consider her upset material for price and purpose.
Seven go to the gate for the second Del Miller split, worth $126,500. Millies Possesion has not lost in six starts, so obviously, the likes of this field have been moot. Even Starita, who presented Evident Beauty with her only loss, may have trouble keeping up with “Millie” here.
The $153,000 Stanley Dancer field in round one of the colts’ drama, offers seven familiar names and one not so familiar (Gerry, who comes into this event without a 2019 win in five starts).
Green Manalishi S has one rival here. That is Summit In Sight.
The Melanderer “Manalishi” is gunning for the classic spot in the classic trot, doing so against his two stablemates (the other two Melanderers) from the Melander barn. He has something to prove ultimately. In this “Dancer” split, though, he will romp—make that with a capital R—against this crew.
Perhaps the public will lean into Summit In Sight, giving Manalishi a better win offering than he should receive?
The second colts’ Dancer is worth $153,000 as well, with seven trotting. The spotless Greenshoe (Melanderer number one to the public, two to us—see Top Ten below) will gather the money from his fans (members of the OBB, that is, the Obvious Bettors Brigade) to make him the choice to win this as an overture to his anointed victory in the big dance.
Though everyone may be right about a sweep of the Hambo heats, this is the best race to bet Greenshoe gets stomped upon. We are going to back the upset scenario by supporting Pilot Discretion. Unbeaten in four, as fast as is needed to do the dirty deed, he could win this and make Greenshoe realize there’s more to worry about in the Hambletonian Final than just Gimpanzee and Manalishi.
3. Green Manalishi S
4. Mr. Vicktor
5. Summit In Sight
7. Pilot Discretion
9. Super Schissel
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