07/14/2016 3:30PM

Meadowlands: Saturday 7/16 Analysis


Race 3 - $30,000 Guaranteed Pick Five Pool

Race 5 - $40,000 Guaranteed Pick Four Pool

Race 9 - $75,000 Guaranteed Pick Four Pool

Race 12 - $267,769 Jackpot Hi Five Mandatory Payout

CHAMPIONSHIP MEET STATS: 89 - 235 / $500.20 (+$30.20)  BEST BETS: 12 - 20 / $32.10 (-7.90)


Spot Play: ASHLEY’S HUSBAND (5th)

Race 1

(2) MISS TEZSLA has yet to prove she has the pure speed to go with the top 3-year-old fillies, but this is clearly the weaker Del Miller division and I do believe she will move up on a bigger track. (6) WOMANS WILL should be headed to the front and is the obvious horse to beat. (4) HAUGHTY has some ability but I haven’t been thrilled with what she has shown so far this year.

[MEADOWLANDS: Watch the Meadowlands Pace & entire stakes-filled Saturday card--Live on DRF!]

Race 2

(5) BLUE MOON STRIDE proved in the Lynch Final at Pocono that she can go with the best sophomore pacing fillies in the sport. She gets another tough test from (2) L A DELIGHT, last year’s Canadian Champion 2-year-old filly, but I’m giving her the edge as this is her home track. The latter looks tough on paper and seems like a must-use on multi-race tickets. (3) SHEZAREALDEAL doesn’t quite seem ready to go with the top pair, but is one to keep an eye on down the road.

Race 3

(3) ALL THE TIME wasn’t at her best last week yet still took care of business. I have to assume that trainer Jimmy Takter has made some minor adjustments and will have her ready. (6) BROADWAY DONNA meets up with the top choice for the first time in her career. Both have talent, speed and class; something has to give. (2) CELEBRITY EVENTSY needs to prove herself versus the best in the division.

Race 4

(5) SOUTHWIND FRANK rolled along as he pleased in the Beal Final and seems highly likely to take charge once again. The early Hambo favorite seems to be in the weaker Dancer split overall. (9) TROLLEY had to open some eyes with a solid second behind the top choice in the Beal. With this being a 1-1/8 distance race, he should be able to fire off the gate and gain valuable position. (4) WAITLIFTER K goes out for a new trainer and adds Brian Sears to the team in the bike. It isn’t farfetched to think improvement is possible. (2) DOG GONE LUCKY has Hambletonian aspirations but wasn’t exactly on his game last time.

Race 5

When (2) ASHLEY’S HUSBAND makes it to this NW11500 level, he is almost an auto-bet. I wouldn’t say he faces a soft field, but he should win nonetheless. (4) WESTERN FAME has some ability and in some ways he gets class relief coming out of the Hempt Final. David Miller is back in the bike and won convincingly with him at Philly. (6) MAJOR WAR has big speed and should play a role in the race. (9) BETTOR ROCK ON N has been facing tough company out of town and lured Tetrick to the team; price player.

Race 6

In a wide open Miss Versatility, I’ll try (1) RULES OF THE ROAD. Her fastest miles have been over this track and she has the high early speed needed to gain valuable position from the inside post. 8) JEWELS IN HOCK has done very well in this series thus far. (2) SMOKINMOMBO has early speed and form. Is she fast enough? (6) BARN DOLL hasn’t been her best so far this year but has the ability to step up.

Race 7

(9) BAR HOPPING wasn’t going anywhere from post nine in the Beal Final as Southwind Frank controlled the tempo. While Hambletonian Day is the ultimate goal, I expect we’ll see an aggressive drive in this spot. (5) MILLIGAN’S SCHOOL has some ability but also tends to make mistakes. If he behaves, I see him sitting a good trip near the lead. (6) MARION MARAUDER was sort of taking a tour of the oval when the Red Sea parted and he surged to victory. That said, this guy has plenty of talent and can certainly win. (3) BLENHEIM ships down from Canada for good trotting connections and could get a piece.

Race 8

(3) ART HISTORY was kept along the cones rather than pull first-over and that clearly cost him a chance at winning last week. I expect off his sharp second-place finish we’ll see him take a shot at the lead. (4) EL BLOOMBITO raced reasonably well last time and should be ready for a peak effort in his third race of the year. (7) ITRUSTYOU has a two-race winning streak but faces tougher. (9) JACKSRLUCKYTOO has been a check machine; tough post tonight.

Race 9

(10) WIGGLE IT JIGGLEIT tries to get the best of Always B Miki for the first time this year and must overcome post 10 to succeed. The good news is this is a 1-1/8 mile race where the run into the first turn is much longer and he should have no problem getting position. Hopefully he will be on the lead or in the pocket. While I believe (5) ALWAYS B MIKI is probably a tick faster, I have to take the price on WIJI until I see him lose to MIKI off a good trip. MIKI has been spectacular all year and is an obvious 3-5 favorite in this spot. (12) ALL BETS OFF has proven he can pace fast enough to compete and you can’t really fault him for a dull effort last time from an outside post at Pocono. (7) FREAKY FEET PETE is impossible to knock, but he has come up short behind one of the top pair in each of his last two starts. (3) DEALT A WINNER makes his fourth start of the year and could be ready for more with the right trip.

Race 10

(3) WINGS OF ROYALTY made a sharp move in the Graduate Final but came up short in the late stages. That said, he had missed four weeks of action prior to that start and should be tighter now. Plus Sears jumps into the bike, which is almost always a plus. (4) HANNELORE HANOVER was supplemented to this race for $50,000, so you know the connections think she has a chance. It is hard not to be impressed with her recent form; clear player. (9) MUSICAL RHYTHM also comes off a sharp performance last time. Will the removal of Lasix hurt his chances? (2) CENTURION ATM has found his groove over the last few weeks. The ability is there with this guy if he is ready to live up to his potential.

Race 11

The Meadowlands Pace appears to come down to a close call between (3) CONTROL THE MOMENT and (4) RACING HILL. For me, the former gets the edge due to an expected tactical edge from drawing inside. Additionally, I don’t expect a conservative steer this week. Racing Hill swept the Hempt elim and Final easily enough and should prove a formidable foe for the top choice. (8) JK WILL POWER is not in the same league as the top pair but has displayed a keen knack for gaining early position and hanging around for fat checks. (6) BOSTON RED ROCKS has disappointed this year. The only way I could consider backing him is if I knew driver Tim Tetrick was going to leave as hard as this colt can.

Race 12

(5) LADY SHADOW is a speedy daughter of Shadow Play that has reeled off three straight wins and reunites with driver Yannick Gingras, who steered her to a lifetime mark of 1:48 1/5 two starts back. She has speed, form, class, post and driver in her corner. (3) DIVINE CAROLINE has proven class, speed and talent but only recently seems to be acclimating to life as an older mare. If she continues on her recent pattern, she can get involved at a nice price. (2) VENUS DELIGHT has been one of the best mares in the sport for a few years now. I can see her being the second choice, but she seems to have morphed into more of a trip horse this year and I wasn’t thrilled with her qualifier even though she won. I’m using her but not loving her. (11) SOLAR SISTER has been racing well and gets a very enticing driver change to Brian Sears. The big issue is post 11, where she will start behind Fashion Showdown. It’s your call as to whether you think the trip can work out; playable in all spots. (12) ANNDROVETTE has been the top older pacing mare seemingly every year but has struggled a bit more often as she gets up in age. Now a 9-year-old, she still has what it takes if given the right trip and Tim Tetrick did chose to drive her over Venus Delight. (8) FROST DAMAGE BLUES gets her first test of the year after winning consecutive starts versus conditioned foes. With 9 wins in 12 career starts, she clearly knows her way to the winner’s circle. I wouldn’t be shocked if she won, but I’m leaning against using her in the top two spots. (10) KATIE SAID has the talent to win but has lacked early speed in her races. From post 10 that places her in a bad spot. If driver Brett Miller changes tactics and this mare responds, she can win. If you are playing the $267,769 Mandatory Payout Jackpot Hi-5, my ticket costs $115.20: 5 / 2,3,11,12 / 2,3,8,11,12 / 2,3,4,6,8,10,11,12 / 2-8,10,11,12

Race 13

(6) J EAGLE FEATHER picked up some confidence while down in class last time and can build on that momentum. (3) HOPE FOR BADLANDS drops down to a level where he is very comfortable; obvious player. (4) GRATIAS DEO is another class-dropper that should have a say in the outcome. (10) GET OUTTA EYRE N & (9) INTHEBLINKOFANEYE have the ability to win if they can revert to their form from earlier this year.

[DRF HARNESS LIVE: Real-time insights from the DRF Harness team this Saturday at 7:00 p.m.]