02/20/2013 11:24PM

Meadowlands: Real Babe must overcome post 10 in the Charles Singer Memorial Final

Lisa Photo
Real Babe has come into her own as a 4-year-old.

While skill plays a large role in racing, it doesn’t hurt to have a little luck now and then. When Real Babe heads behind the gate for Saturday’s $47,800 Charles Singer Memorial Final at the Meadowlands, it will mark the third consecutive week where lady luck just wasn’t on her side. After drawing posts 10 and 9 in the preliminary legs, she will have to overcome post 10 in the final.

A $200,000 Harrisburg Mixed Sale purchase, Real Babe was initially destined to be a broodmare prospect in Australia. With superstar parents of Donato Hanover ($2,998,777) and Housethatruthbuilt ($1,164,931), she certainly fit the bill of a potential producer of champions.

“We were going to send her Down Under to Australia sometime in April,” said trainer Mark Harder. “But she fit some low-level conditions and has been racing very well. If she keeps this up, we’ll keep her here all year.

“I think she can be (an Open trotter). I don’t think she is Check Me Out, but she is solid and has good speed.”

Following an easy mile in her 2013 debut, Real Babe has reeled off three wins in four starts, including a victory from the same post 10 position she will occupy on Saturday. Starting from post 9 last week, she encountered plenty of road trouble. The 4-year-old mare was wide around the first turn and never saw the cones during the adventurous mile.

“We tried to look after her a little bit last week and it just didn’t work out,” said Harder about the tough trip and not leaving hard to the top like she has in recent efforts.

While Harder is far from confident, he is expecting a bit more from Real Babe in the final.

“She is healthy and happy, “said the veteran trainer. “I expect a big race out of her.”

David Miller will once again have the task at overcoming the bad draw this week.

Favoritism in the final could fall to the Ron Burke-trained duo of Sequin Hanover (post 3) and Good Sound Advice (post 7). The former set a 1:53 lifetime mark in round one before getting wiped out around the first turn last week. Meanwhile Good Sound Advice also scored a first leg victory and broke last time.

The second leg was dominated by longshots as No Less Than Magic (post 1) and Volare De Vie (post 8) each scored at north of 30-1.

Other contenders could include On The Podium (post 2) and Helios (post 4), both runner-ups in the first leg of the series, and Where To Hanover (post 5), who has yet to miss the board in four 2013 starts.

While Real Babe will be competing for the most money of the six horses Harder has in-to-go on Saturday, his stable star Golden Receiver will likely capture the bulk of the attention. After a four week break brought on by the cancellation of the Spring Pacing Championship at Woodbine, Golden Receiver has been looking for a spot to ply his trade and finally found it in a Free For All/A-1 pace.

“I’ve been trying to find a spot and we finally get to race him this week,” said Harder, who felt turning him out didn’t seem like the right move. Instead the trainer will try to spot Golden Receiver in Open races every couple of weeks until the bigger races get underway in May.

Golden Receiver will face six others in the second race and should be ready to win despite the break in action.

“He’s probably not as sharp as he could be, but I expect him to win the race,” concluded Harder.

Harder was also hoping for good things from Lawgiver Hanover (race 5), Dianes Shark (race 10) and Willie Boots (race 13). He expected to see a “little better” effort from Lawgiver Hanover and felt the other pair were “in classes where they could do some damage.”

The one horse where predictions were off the table was Bakin On The Beach (race 12).

“If you would have told me on January 1 that this horse wouldn’t have won by now, I would have thought you were crazy,” said Harder.

 Post time for the 13-race card at the Meadowlands, which also includes the $60,200 Exit 16W and $86,700 Winter Survivor Finals, is 7:15 pm.