By Frank Cotolo
Thursday, Aug. 29
At Philly in the afternoon we went after two young colt pacers in sires-stakes action. We finished third to an 8-1 shot with Tell Them Lou ($6.00) and then fourth to the public’s second choice with Hey Run Me Over (17-1).
At Hoosier, we had only a failed favorite in three sires-stakes events, though we did break a record for longshot odds. Foxy Rigger ($2.10, $2.10 ok) took second in the first race won by the public’s second choice. The exotic partners we supported in that event, Seventimesacharm (9-2) and Fancy Riggin (222-1) finished sixth and ninth, respectively. The 222-1 is not a typo, it is the actual closing odds—a record for any horse we have supported in the recorded history of our storied handicapping/betting career.
The crowd favorite won second split, while we finished third with Flirtinwithtrouble ($2.60).
Yonkers’ state-bred leg found us finishing ninth with Dealer’s Table (9-1), beaten by the second choice in the betting.
At Woodbine/Mohawk (WoMo), we were second in one of two Champlin Stakes with Whose Blues ($2.30, $2.30 ok) and never had a chance in the other split due to the break in stride by I’m Really Special (9-2), who ended up eighth across the finish line.
Friday, Aug. 30
Following up on bet-backs from the Hambletonian program, we offered a smashing result with the TwinSpires Hoosier Pick for this program. It was a cold exacta. On top was Endeavor ($5.40, $3.80, $3.00). Completing the exotic was Ideal Feeling ($7.20, $4.20) for an exacta worth $15.50.
Sires-stakes races at Vernon for frosh fillies left us with little to show (or win or place). We were fourth with Racine Bell (38-1), and fifth with Turnthefrownaround (5-1) and Movietown (8-1), beaten by the races’ second choice and a 21-1 shot, respectively.
The Champlain for frosh colts at WoMo was won by the favorite. We finished fourth with Nylander (6-1) in a dead heat.
Saturday, Aug. 31
As prescribed, we nailed the Hudson Filly Trot at Yonkers with Golden Tricks ($17.20, $5.60, $2.90).
Ditto for the Lady Maud, where our winner was everyone’s choice. Trillions Hanover ($2.80, $2.10, n/s) brushed big to the front and satisfied the chalk players.
At WoMo, the features found us placing in each. We were second with Atlanta ($5.40, $3.50) in the Maple Leaf Trot and Lather Up ($2.30, $2.10) could not survive a snappy outside brush to start the race, giving in to 34-1 Courtly Choice, who took advantage of the three-way surge at the start to grind home late. Jimmy Freight (8-1) was also burned from the starting quarters and finished fifth.
The soph-colt pacing Simcoe was one more defeat for Captain Crunch. We finished fourth with Stag Party (7-1).
BREEDERS CROWN COUNTDOWN
In a startling finish, vaguely known American Mercury (7-1) out-stepped Bettor’s Wish ($2.10 n/s) to win the Messenger.
Also at Yonkers, we came through with Gimpanzee ($2.60, $2.10, $2.10) over Forbidden Trade in the Yonkers Trot but the latter finished second, spoiling exotics that could have paid well. However, in our defense, two of the three suggested exotic contenders broke—Livinonthedash (36-1) and Osterc (14-1). Another, Soul Strong ($2.10) finished third.
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 54 active horses (a 20-percent win hit rate and a 46-percent ATB [across-the-board] 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 weeks) It is up to you to follow horses that have not performed before this weekly review.
Byby Landon, $17.20, $6.80, $4.60, Freehold
Heidis Heart, $14.80, $6.20, $3.80, Scioto
Lynn Bin Con Kin, $8.80, $2.30, $2.10, Saratiga
Highalator, $6.80, $3.60, $3.20, Pocono
Walter White, $5.00, $4.80, $3.40, Hoosier
Yooper, $4.60, $3.40, $3.00, Freehold
Sweet Young Thing, $4.20, $2.60, $2.40, Philly
Yacht Week, $3.80, $2.60, $2.40, Meadows
Ready For Moni, $3.20, $3.00, $2.40, Red Mile
Sylvia Trench, $3.20, $2.40, $2.10, Plainridge
Homicide Hunter, $2.80, $2.20, $2.10, Philly
Cant Knock Me, $16.60, $6.10, Monticello
Miss Kendra D, $6.40, $2.60, Red Mile
In A Godda Davita, $6.30, $4.90 (Exacta $20.60), Tioga
Itiswhatitis, $6.00, $4.40 (Exacta $22.40), Hoosier
Ricks Sign, $4.80, $2.80 (Exacta $23.00), Scarborough
Shes Got Bling, $4.20, $2.80, Scioto
Im A Clown, $3.80, $3.00, Plainridge
Belles Delight, $3.20, $2.60 (Exacta $12.20), Scioto
Shamwow, $2.20, $2.60 ok, Hoosier
Ransom Demand, $5.80, Freehold
Legion Of Honor, $4.20, Red Mile
Just B Talking, $3.20, Running Aces
Avalanche Hanover, $2.80, Meadows
Sew Psyched, $2.80, Plainridge
News & Notes
Alarm Detector, the 2017 O’Brien Award winner for top two-year-old trotting colt, has been retired at four. He will turn to stud duty. At two, he won six of seven starts at Mohawk Racetrack. He swept the William Wellwood Memorial. After his record-setting freshman campaign, Alarm Detector made an appearance in many Grand Circuit events at three, including the Hambletonian, Zweig and the Canadian Trotting Classic, earning $398,848. He has had problems with bone bruises since two and although he recovered multiple times he was never the same. All methods of healing the issues failed, so his connections decided he is “too great of an animal to push and [potentially] hurt.”
Wiggle It Jiggleit made his second qualifying start of his prepping to return to competition. On Aug. 28 he raced a 1:54.1 mile finishing third at Pocono. “Wiggle worked to the front beyond a :28.1 first quarter before rating a :57.3 half and picking up the pace to three-quarters in 1:25.2. At the top of the stretch, Wiggle fought off Livinonthebeach when Geez Joe vaulted off cover to win by 2-1/4 lengths. Owner George Teague Jr. was pleased with the performance but said Wiggle will race a couple more qualifiers before entering any races.
Century Mile opened its harness meet Sunday afternoon, Sept. 1. The Western Canada Pacing Derby on Sept. 15 offers an estimated purse of $130,000. The event, carried by Century when it replaced Western Canada’s Northlands Park harness meet, is the highlight of the Century meet, featuring top three-year-old colts. An event for fillies, the Don Byrne Memorial, was formerly the Northlands Filly Pace and it also has an estimated purse of $130,000. Post time for Sept. 1, 2 and Sundays is 1:15 p.m. Post times on Sept. 6, 7 and 13 will be 4:15 p.m. When lights are installed, post times for Fridays will move to 7:15 p.m.
Here is the TwinSpires harness racing Little Brown Jug top 10 for this week. Unlike the “official” Jug top 10, we judge our selections on current performances that may indicate improvements by the September race date, along with our personal probabilities based upon past predictions since the 1980s.
1. Captain Victorious
2. Stag Party
3. Captain Crunch
4. Best In Show
5. Buddy Hill
6. Wild Wild Western
7. Shake That House
8. Yacht Week
Indulge in our monthly columns, Alternative Actions and Bettors Banquet at Harness