02/01/2017 6:10PM

Meadowlands: Friday 2/3 Analysis

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Race 1 - $25,000 Guaranteed Pick Five Pool

Race 3 - $25,000 Guaranteed Pick Four Pool

Race 7 - $50,000 Guaranteed Pick Four Pool

MEET STATS: 100 - 343 / $521.60 (-$164.40)

BEST BETS: 13 - 28 / $52.60 (-$3.40)

Best Bet: AVA N ELLA (2nd)

Spot Play: BETTER SAID (11th)

Race 1

(5) WINEMASTER HANOVER couldn’t get anywhere near the lead into a fast opening quarter last week. The road to the top should be easier this time around and that tactical edge gets him the call. (1) POSSESSED FASHION is the most accomplished trotter in the field, though I’m not sure how I feel about now needing hobbles as a 7-year-old. Let’s check him out in the post parade. (3) FOX VALLEY STEFFEN drops in claiming price once again and could be a factor with a clean trip.

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Race 2

(1A) AVA N ELLA was expectedly short in her first start since April having missed four weeks since her most recent qualifier. She ships down to the track where she won two races in 2016 and should have a big shot against this field. (3) BIG BAD BEACH is plenty sharp and perhaps the horse to beat, at least if the top pick doesn’t bring her best game. (6) NEVER ANY DOUBT has early speed. Let’s see what the new barn can do with her.

Race 3

(5) MOSTINTERESTINGMAN brushed and crushed on the switch to the big track last week. Hopefully Bongiorno can get the same result as Gingras last week. (7) GRANITE STATE didn’t bring his best effort after spending six months on the sidelines; can improve. (6) ANGEL CINDY should be along for a share of the exotics. (9) EYESEENOW has early speed and is another I’ll be using underneath.

Race 4

(2) BAGGAGE CLAIM made a bold move last time and paid the price. With a smoother journey he can pull off an upset. (6) CENTURY CHURCHILL comes off a solid effort and should be in prime position after leaving off the gate. (7) B FAST EDDIE bested many of these last time but gets an unfavorable post switch. (5) CAROLINA HURRICANE was in over his head versus Gravelsinmytravels last Saturday. He might be worth a look here.

Race 5

(1) KEYSTONE ACE dropped to this level last week but faced a much better group than tonight’s collection of formless foes.  The addition of the red hot Marohn can only help. (5) ITS CHOCOLATE TIME also comes out of the same tougher NW5000 heat as the top choice and is eligible to do better this time around. (3) BUFFALINO HANOVER will clearly be a player in the race but needs to go faster to win. (2) PLAYBOY RUSTY should save ground and get a piece.

Race 6

(7) CROSBYS CLAM BAKE should have a major tactical advantage with a clear shot at the early lead this week. Unless he is somehow odds-on, I’ll be on board. (6) MUSCLE DIAMOND & (5) B YOYO are clear players if the top one falters or the trip works out nicely.

Race 7

(5) CLASSICAL ANNIE raced well versus a superior group last Friday to be third. I’ll give her the slight edge tonight. (4) CAN DO picked up his game with Gingras in the bike. Gelding should be on the move early and have every chance of winning with Monti driving. (1) WAITING ON A WOMAN has speed and the inside. Things could get interesting if Campbell gets aggressive early. (3) WORLD CUP has plenty of class but hasn’t been at the very top of his game lately.

Race 8

(3) RED SCOOTER finished well last time and sees his claiming tag slashed by one-third tonight. I’ll be very surprised if this 9-year-old doesn’t race well.  (7) RING WARRIOR drops down for the third straight week but could get lost in the wagering shuffle as others are clearly going to take action. His last win came at this $10K claiming level. (6) ALEX BULLVILLE has won two of three starts at this condition and is now a must-use. (2) MAGIC TRICKS couldn’t handle the class rise off the claim and now is back in for the purchased price.

Race 9

Let’s preface this analysis with the fact that I’m not crazy about any of these horses and will likely be spreading wide in the late pick four for this race. (8) O U SEXY GUY never got involved in his last try here but won the previous start in a NW7500, which despite the listed NW11500 condition, is about where this group fits. Brett Miller driving is a nice plus. (4) I C CAVIAR faces substantially lesser quality horses tonight, but has no form to speak of and is coming off consecutive breaks; tough call. (1) BATTLE MAGE has early speed from the inside; using underneath. (7) HERE COMES SAM & (3) WINDSONG ILLUSION are both off solid efforts and either could step up with the right scenario.

Race 10

(7) ASPEN CALIFORNIA closed well off the bench and should get plenty of pace to close into this week. (8) LONG STORY SHORT drops back down and can grind with the best of them; post may hurt. (3) SKATES N PLATES was a sharp winner last time but figures to have company near the front. (2) FUSION POWER is capable of winning with a smooth trip.

Race 11

(2) BETTER SAID wound up first over and couldn’t sustain her rally to fend off fresher foes; another shot. (9) INTOVIEW is clearly feeling good now and is comfortable at this level. (10) BEAUTIFUL LADY double drops but drew poorly; capable with a good trip. (7) BLUSH HANOVER gets another chance at this level after winning last time. (4) JOYFUL GAME just missed behind #7 last week.

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