02/04/2016 4:48PM

Meadowlands: Saturday 2/6 Analysis

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MEET STATS: 85 - 285 / $472.10 (-$97.90)  BEST BETS: 11 - 21 / $42.90 (+.90)

Best Bet: RESTLESS NATIVE (14th)

Spot Play: ASHLEY’S HUSBAND (8th)

Race 1

(1) BACKDRAFT HANOVER gets some needed post relief in his second try for this claiming tag. He can make some noise in this spot. (3) NF DRUM ROLL is another one moving into a better starting spot and we have seen him win here in the past. (4) THE POKESTER leaves the basement claiming condition at Yonkers for the bottom level here. Perhaps the big track will perk him up.

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Race 2

(6) CONNECTING FLIGHT is fast and prone to mistakes. If he paces the mile, he wins. (3) BROOKLYNITE was highly regarded early on as a 2-year-old and now is back at the races as a gelding. He should be ready to roll in his second start since early October. (1) HONEY I’M HOME came with some pre-race hype and didn’t exactly live up to it last week. Well-bred horse has a shot, I guess.

Race 3

(6) PEDRO’S DREAM tired to fifth after leaving and coming uncovered a week ago. This field came up very soft and with a better trip I believe the result could improve greatly. (1) OAKMONT didn’t exactly impress me in his most recent qualifier, but in a field this dull he has a shot. (9) FOOL OF IDEAS returns to the Meadowlands at a reduced level and gets one of the better longshot drivers in the bike.

Race 4

(3) AXIOS is a risky play due to constant breaking issues, but if he minds his manners there is no doubt he is fastest. (5) MAGENTA MAN steps up with a perfect 2016 record in three starts for owner Jeff Gural. Gelding seems sharp enough to play with the tougher group. (1) HOT SUMMER KNIGHT raced well from off the pace from an outside post last time. He should stick closer this week.

Race 5

(5) CITY PIE put in a solid effort two starts back at this level and should appreciate the driver change to Campbell this week. (4) STRATOCASTER rallied for second when last seen in this condition. (6) PAPPY’S PAL is a hard horse to predict but one that should be comfortable against Saturday’s competition. (2) MAGICAL ELF N has loomed in all recent start and seems like a fit underneath.

Race 6

(4) THAT’S MY OPINION seems to have put in a clunker last week while up in class, but he paced the same exact final time as when he won two starts back. The drop back down to the basement condition should prove a difference maker. (3) BOOGIEWOOGIEBRIAN came up a bit short in the lane after four weeks without a pari-mutuel race; threat. (5) ADDWATER should be forwardly placed and put in a decent effort.

Race 7

(1) ART HISTORY put in two solid qualifiers and seems ready for the challenge at hand. (3) SHOOTER’S DREAM drops down and has the early speed to make plenty of noise. (8) FIRST OF ITSKIND charged home against tougher last week to just miss. He may be overbet off that performance. (5) ROCKIN WIZARD is one of many getting class relief in this field; also has early speed.

Race 8

(6) ASHLEY’S HUSBAND comes off a solid second versus the sharpest horse on the grounds, who is assigned post eight tonight. This race should set up perfect with him following the classy Rockeyed Optimist. (3) KINGOFTHEJUNGLE had to settle for a tuck third and lacked the needed late firepower. Trainer Capone gets a new driver in the bike now hoping for a wake-up call. (5) ROCKEYED OPTIMIST was extremely sharp in his qualifier and appeared to have something left in the tank. That said, I just don’t like the way this race seems likely to set up for him. (8) REAL NICE has won three straight while showing how he has made over $1.3 million.

Race 9

(3) JACKSRLUCKYTOO stays in the same class but finds an easier field this week and gets a better post to work with. (1) ALL WEEK has speed, form and pylon position. (5) DUNE DUDE has been knocking at the door but can’t seem to get over the top lately; maybe.

Race 10

(1) GHOST PINE comes in from Northlands for connections that have had success giving horses to Ron Coyne in the past (remember National Debt?). Five-year-old was just okay in his qualifiers but I’m not enamored with the rest of the field so I’ll take a shot; Lasix added. (10) PIECE OF THE ROCK drops down a notch and could be firing off the gate for a young driver that has proven capable. (7) ALEX BULLVILLE & (6) DANCIN HILL are both dropping in class but for what it is worth, they would probably be better served finishing second and third respectively so they can drop in class next week rather than be forced to take a class hike; just sayin’; proceed with caution.

Race 11

(1) FOR A BETTOR TIME moves into the Russo barn and he does well with fresh stock that has shown fast miles in the past. (4) YIPPITY HANOVER took a shot last week and tired. I can see that mile helping him return to form. (10) LETS ROCK TOGETHER is stuck in post 10, but don’t be shocked if he fires away and has a big say in the outcome. (3) TWINCREEKS JESSE has performed well in all recent starts against this company.

Race 12

(8) MAJOR WAR is a horse I believe has been sitting on a winning mile for some time. He reunites with Tetrick tonight and drops down one level. (6) ALLSTAR LEGEND was a winner when last seen in this condition. (4) ROCK OUT comes off a sharp qualifier and is dangerous speed. (2) FRATERNITY & (1) GOLD ROCKS are sharp enough to contend; at least underneath.

Race 13

(5) WHAT I BELIEVE takes a meaningful drop to the basement condition. He didn’t exactly catch the easiest field but could score at a decent mutuel. (6) INTHEBLINKOFANEYE will be gunning to the front and is too sharp to ignore. (9) MARTINI HANOVER split horses full of pace last week and is a decent trip away from a winner’s circle visit. (1) PRINCE PALANI raced well when last at this level.

Race 14

Giant Slayer dropped from $12,500 claimers to the $10,000 level and popped last weekend for trainer Michael Russo. Now (4) RESTLESS NATIVE makes a similar move for the conditioner and I’m expecting similar results. (8) VICTORY AHEAD chased Giant Slayer a week ago and could be doing the same behind the top choice now. (1) STORMIN RUSTLER raced better in his latest start and has some class. (9) CASH CAB has finished in the money in nearly half of his 259 starts; using in the tri and super.

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