Player Quick Pick: Hambletonian for 8/2/2014

August 2nd, 2014

by Ryan Dickey

Meadowlands 13 | 5:11 pm ET 89th Hambletonian for 3 yo going 1 mile (trot)


Undefeated in 2014, and the winner of 16 of 17 lifetime races, Father Patrick is the favorite of the 89th running of the Hambletonian today at the Meadowlands.  One of three going to the gate for trainer Jimmy Takter, the “Green Hornet” Yannick Gingras drives the ⅘ morning line shot from the outside post (the #11 horse will start from the second tier).  Takter will drive #7 Trixton, while John Campbell will drive the other Takter entry the #5 Nuncio.  All three could be deserving winners of the most prestigious trotting event in America, but no one has a better resume than Father Patrick.  If he can hold his form from July 26th’s qualifier here at the “Big M”, where he came home in :26.2 and 1:52, he’ll be tough to beat, but there’s a non-Takter horse that just might do so…

VALUE HORSE: 4-Datsyuk

Although Datsyuk has ten less career races, and thirteen less wins than Father Patrick, this gelding by Explosive Matter, trained and driven by Charlie Norris, may be the “value” of the Hambletonian if his odds stay near the 12-1 morning line, and the Takter horses take all sorts of money.  Datsyuk has quickly risen to the upper echelons of the trotting game, and would need to have his best race to date to pull off the upset.  He’s raced against all three of the Takter horses, and has yet to finish better than any of them.  He finished second to Trixton last out.  He finished third behind Father Patrick and Nuncio two races ago.  Three back, he finished second behind Nuncio, and four back was second behind Father Patrick.  His post position is nearly perfect (especially with Father Patrick out widest) and he will be in the mix, as he closes as well as any high-end trotter in the country.  Like his namesake, Detroit Red Wings forward Pavel Datsyuk, this 3 year old gelding may have a knack for the spectacular.  Play Datsyuk across the board.

OTHERS TO CONSIDER: 5-Nuncio, 7-Trixton and 1-Resolve

It’s a total “family affair” here, as Nuncio and Trixton, as explained above, are trained by Jimmy Takter, and both have a shot alongside Father Patrick as winners of the race.  The #1 Resolve is trained by Takter’s daughter, Nancy Johansson.  Nuncio (9/2) and Trixton (7/2) are superstars in their own right, but Resolve, at a juicy 20-1 on the morning line (won’t be that high at post-time), has some serious potential to add a “price” to exotics.  Corey Callahan is one of the best drivers in North America, and if he can get out quickly from the rail, and can put himself in a position to strike, the colt can definitely hit the board.  Play Resolve in exotics.

WAGERING OPTIONS FOR $20 PLAYERS $6 WIN 4 ($6) $2 Exacta 10 over 1,4,5,7 ($8) $0.50 Trifecta 4 over 1,5,7,10 over 1,5,7,10 ($6--total $20)

WAGERING OPTIONS FOR $50 PLAYERS $10 WIN/PLACE/SHOW 4 ($30) $2 Exacta 10 over 1,4,5,7 ($8) $1 Trifecta 4 over 1,5,7,10 over 1,5,7,10 ($12--total $50)