The Grand Circuit explodes with stakes in Canada as New York rolls out the tests for state-bred champions. It is a huge week of features from border to border and we are on top of them as features and as additions to TwinSpires’ horses-to-watch (H2W) list. So load up the wagering accounts and prepare to fire.
INSS LEG FIVE
Frosh-colt pacers are at it again at Hoosier on Sept. 12 in Leg 5 of their division’s Indiana Sires Stakes (INSS). This leg offers a purse of $68k.
Top-earner Odds On Osiris has made a bundle for Melanie Wrenn in five races, winning with the fastest mark, which always impresses the common handicapper. Still, seven post positions to his left is Always And Again, with as many wins and close in the other categories. A sharp outsider is Straight Up Cool. He could get a rousing trip from post 2. Indeed, any improvement here puts him right in the league of the others with a better price to offer.
The second 11-horse field is an open affair where Sawyer’s Desire returns from the H2W list and deserves more attention than he would get had he returned in an overnight. He is up against a few foes that have as good a chance as he to win but will most likely be better supported. It’s a good spot to go with this son of Real Desire (a sire that accomplished more on the track nationally than the others represented).
The huge stakes program on Sept. 14 at Woodbine/Mohawk (WoMo) could offer some strong payouts. Here are our suggested contenders in those stakes (check your program for their order on the card).
WAY OF PEACE
The $405,000 Peaceful Way at WoMo on Sept. 14 is a huge theater for frosh-filly trotters and this field of 10 earned their berths here from last week’s pair of elims.
Sure, the pair of elim winners was well bet and should be fired to do their best for the big bucks, but what will the bettors think of PL Notsince? Her improvement cannot be ignored. She fired in the first elim, dueled for first, settled and held on for the place spot at 37-1) against Dip Me Hanover. Any improvement brings home the biggest check and a great win price. Hello Tomorrow, beaten favorite in elim two (our main contender there) had little excuse failing against Panem, so a short price this week is not a suggested play.
The season’s top frosh-colt trotters are locked and loaded for this huge pot on Sept. 14 but they will come together without being led by the top dog in the division, Real Cool Sam. This $370,000 final offers an equal distribution of talent, though the bettors were not disappointed in either elim winner.
Port Perry, one of our BCC Top Five picks, comes into the final a beaten favorite, following the public’s second choice around in a dull race where the three toteboard finishers made for punk change.
It was elim two where a striking improvement surfaces in HP Royal Theo. At 29-1 he almost defeated the favored Capricornus. BCC top-fiver Synergy, the race’s second choice, was short after straining up top early, but that was a poor excuse and not nearly as exciting as HP Royal Theo’s brush, in which he gained 6 lengths to almost cause the upset. He may not go off as generously but he gets our support for price and purpose.
GREAT LADY ELIMS
Two $35,000 elims for next week’s She’s A Great Lady (SAGL) final are on the Sept. 14 program, featuring six frosh-filly pacers in each contest.
We return to supporting Peaky Sneaky in the first elim. We hit strong place-and-show money on her in last week’s Champlain and dig her here, though the price is unpredictable at press time. She did not make our “Fives” for the division last week but raced better than four of them that did. Alicorn, a high earner, could wind up the co-favorite here with Lady Lou, giving Peaky Sneaky a decent price for a six-horse field.
In the second SAGL elim, the crowd may back off of Lyons Sentinel and make her offer more than the other product of Captaintreacherous—Reflect With Me—keying in on trainer Tony Alagna. That would make Lyons Sentinel a strong choice, though she may prove to be the best from the crowd.
A pair of elims for the Metro Pace Final is also on the Sept. 14 program. Here come the future big-gun glamour boy pacers, we all suppose.
Seven go in the first $40,000 qualifying round. This is not a collection of money-grabbing green boys. Towering over six of them in earnings is Papi Rob Hanover. In the subtle handling care of Brett Pelling, this guy may be able to present a major event score to the resurrected U.S. stable. He may have to prove more in the final but here he appears the classiest.
The second Metro will be tough to wager to win since Capt Midnight figures to be the slam-dunk favorite. He does have to contend with YS Mathis, but last week’s win for either cannot be compared, since Capt Midnight jogged by comparison and looks like he could be a better catch than Captain Crunch (at two or three).
I wonder if he was named after the 1950s’ Capt. Midnight TV character that many Baby Boomers will recall? Richard Webb played the captain, who interacted with kids watching at home by sending secret messages on a decoder ring. See if you remember this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WvKlqMjfk1Y
THE EMPIRE STAKES
The $1.8-million New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) championship program is comprised of eight $225,000 races. This year the series winds up at Batavia on Sept. 14.
For the sake of space and time, here is a list of our top two contenders in each final (in order of their program place).
Three-year-old filly pace
JK American Beauty is a Joe Holloway product that can defeat favorite Zero Tolerance at a price.
Three-year-old filly trot
Tough group, though Quincy Blue Chip has a grip on the series. Winndevie can make good from the cursed 8 hole to be in the mix.
Two-year-old filly pace
A shot to beat favorite Merga Hanover is a great trip from Racine Bell.
Two-year-old filly trot
Division-leader Hypnotic AM is another gem from Marcus Melander and this one could finish the season and this series without a loss.
Two-year-old colt pace
This is an open affair since Groovy Joe must handle the 8 post. We attach our support to Freedom Warrior.
Two-year-old colt trot
Ake Svanstedt’s Third Shift is in a perfect spot to take home the best cash.
Three-year-old colt trot
Really? Do we have to alert you about this one? All right. Gimpanzee.
Three-year-old colt pace
This is a race worth betting, even though Shake The House and Hickfromfrenchlick will be favorites. We like an upset by Buddy Hill, who could nail his Little Brown Jug aspirations no matter how he wins it. A big price is worth tossing these dice.
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.
9/13/19, Praying Fay R10
9/14/19, +Hes A Love Shark R12
9/12/19, I Am Will R6; Manhattan Beach R8; Cult Icon R10
9/13/19, +Petal To The Metal R6
9/14/19, +Sutton Seelster R10; +Oakmont R11
9/12/19, Freddy B Quick R3
9/12/19, +Strong Playin King R5
9/13/19, +Vicious Aloicious R1; +Blakemore R13
9/12/19, Like Clockwork R3
9/12/19, Hetties Commander R10
9/12/19, Hasty Western R5; +Lucky Leonard R6
9/16/19, JK Pearls Delight R3
9/14/19, RHP R6
9/13/19, Casimire Quiche R5; Calm As Can Be R6
9/12/19, Finnick Odair R10
9/12/19, +Dimes Make Dollars R9; +Iced Out R11
9/14/19, Benjis Best R2; Jenkins Creek R5; Iwillmakeyousaywow R7; Bondi Hanover R8
9/14/19, Split The House R11
9/14/19, He Grins Again R11
9/14/19, +Santanna One R3; +Wood Hunter R5
9/14/19, Dragon Seelster R6
9/14/19, O’brockoli R3
9/13/19, +Majestic Moment N R2
9/14/19, +Pacing Major N R9
9/16/19, Lady Christine R1