Harness Weekly Update: $50 place payoff among 52% in the money

August 14th, 2022

The TwinSpires Harness Blog Weekly Update covers our successes and failures from selected features, stakes, and the H2W (horses-to-watch list). H2W horses through the following Monday appear in the next Update’s results.

Thursday, Aug. 11

This week’s Mohawk Miles selections were both beaten by favorites. Tactical Mounds ($4.20) finished third, and We Shall Sea broke badly and finished 10th.

Friday, Aug. 12

Favorite freshmen won both features at the Meadows. As well, our contenders finished fifth in both. Angelpedia broke and refreshed enough to finish in a trot, and Piano Bar (9-1) just did not have it.

At Hoosier the Dan Patch Pace winner was no surprise, nor did he break any speed marks. Our upset dreams with Workin Ona Mystery ($5.00) put us in the exotics and featured superfecta. Our Super ticket ($5.20) nailed the top four, but the two in-betweens (#1 and #4) finished in the opposite positions.

We won one out of the two co-features at Hoosier with Makin Some Noise ($8.20, $4.60, $3.80), while we were fourth with Maggie Rhee (25-1).

Saturday, Aug. 13

At Northfield, in the Milstein, our Adios-picked winner Bythemissal won again—however, he was the overwhelming choice. Our pick, longshot Layton Hanover, finished off the board.


The H2W results list across-the-board prices. Exactas listed include a H2W horse finishing second to a race-favorite or if the first two finishers are H2W horses (an asterisk appears when both horses form a cold exotic combo; most base prices are $2). The note “OK” determines that prices are correct (even when a show price exceeds a place price or all prices are the same).

Please note that some results reflect horses racing after the blog posts (they appear the following week).

This week, there were 31 H2W horses (13% win-hit rate and a 52% ATB [across-the-board] hit). Horses with asterisks before their names were tweets @FrankCotolo. Follow for late choices.


Ubanji, $7.80, $4.20, $2.80, Plainridge
Dewey Dog, $6.60, $4.20, $2.20, Plainridge
HS Judy Jetson, $4.80, $2.80, $2.60, Meadows
Willy Wally, $4.00, $2.40, $2.40 OK, Yonkers


Sofer, $50.80, $18.60, Plainridge
All Heart I Am, $7.20, $5.40, Vernon
Easy Three, $7.00, $3.80, Running Aces
P Chico, $5.00, $4.00, Red Mile
Worthy Of Honor, $3.20, $5.40 OK, Pocono
Marloe Hanover, $2.40, $2.60 (Exacta $7.40), Scioto
Candy Bomber, $2.10, $2.10 OK, Philly


Herculisa, $4.00, Northfield
Joes Beauty, $4.00, Plainridge
Straight Up Cool, $4.00, Pocono
Winooski, $3.80, Mohawk
Stirling Ensign, $2.30, Vernon


The Meadowlands handled $7,656,054 for its 16-race Hambletonian program on Aug. 6, larger than in 2021 by more than $1 million. The total handle and the average per race of $478,503 were 2022 bests. Betting from French and Swedish organizations was heavy and when added are likely to push the handle near or past the $9 million mark, a barrier broken only once in Hambo history when wagering totaled $9,015,019 in 2005.

Yannick Gingras and Ron Burke capped a big Meadowlands Championship Meeting Aug. 6 finishing far ahead of their respective dash-win categories. Gingras’ 108 victories beat Dexter Dunn, who finished on top in the driver’s money-earnings race with $3,026,547. He was followed by Tim Tetrick with $2,587,768. Burke students won 68 times to win over Jeff Cullipher, who had 40. Burke won the money title with $1,676,709.

Again, all of the horses in this year’s Hambletonian final become automatic bet-backs in their next race or the one after if they break or face another adverse condition. Hambletonian fields contain the division’s best colts and fillies, so the stakes becomes a “key” race, meaning the greater percentage of horses in the field win quickly after. The bet-backs are mostly short-priced winners (unless a few show up in the same race; then bet the best price). Still, percentages show they are overlays playing them to win no matter where they finished in the Hambletonian or Oaks.

Extraordinary Extras

Indulge in our column Alternative Actions at Harness Racing Update.