12/20/2016 4:18PM

Meadowlands: Thursday 12/22 Analysis

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Race 1 - $25,874.24 PICK-5 CARRYOVER

MEET STATS: 60 - 197 / $296.00 (-$98.00)

BEST BETS: 7 - 16 / $19.00 (-$13.00)

Best Bet: NOT BEFORE EIGHT (5th)

Spot Play: SUMATRA (6th)

Race 1

(4) COME AND TELL PAP never saw the pylons last week as others left to his inside and driver Bob Davis didn’t seem to have him fired up enough to clear quickly. With a more favorable post position and facing a seemingly easier field, he should have every chance at winning. (7) DREAM ROCKER is a clear threat given a smooth journey. (2) ELLEN’S STREAK appears to be moving in the wrong direction but did get a week of rest to recharge the batteries; mixed feelings. (1) LANDONFITZ could be a bit of a surprise package in this spot. He has been saddled with a string of outside posts and might just get aggressive from the pylons.

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Race 2

(7) WINDSUN MISSION admittedly didn’t go very fast in her first career win 10 days ago, but it was the way in which she won that stood out for me. New barn seems to have her moving on to something better. (6) BEND IN THE RIVER has been in against slightly more accomplished foes in the NW3/4 ranks. Versus NW2 types tonight, he is a dangerous wire to wire player. (3) PRETTY PHYLLY G took plenty of air in her most recent qualifier and did well to hang in there in the stretch. (2) EURO GAP was much improved with hobbles added but would be a bad play if you don’t get close to a double-digit price. (10) DONOMONI blew away a field at Plainridge last time and certainly merits a look.

Race 3

(5) SOMETHINGINAWATER finished up nicely with the trainer in the bike while qualifying with Lasix for the first time on Dec. 10. She picks up John Campbell now and faces a field of question marks. (6) MYMEGARICHMOTHRNLO was steady in his two tries at this level racing at Pocono and was up against it versus straight conditioned foes last time. Given a smooth trip, she seems like a clear player. (3) QUEEN JOSEPHINE came away in the pocket last time but wasn’t exactly fast off the gate. Notice she was a length better than #6 at Pocono recently. (8) BIG BAD BEACH is off a win and picks up the hottest driver on the planet.

Race 4

(5) MONTALBANO BI has a bit of a deceptive line as he tucked at the quarter and didn’t pulled until right at the half. He showed no signs of breaking and turned in a solid effort while losing to one who scooted up the cones. (1) MASTER OF EXCUSES failed big-time as the odds-on choice last out but was used during the opening half of that mile. Perhaps a more relaxing trip can result in a top effort. (9) WINDSONG ILLUSION missed a few weeks after being forced to qualify due to consecutive breaks. He took a nice easy tour of the track last week and could be more in the mix with the switch to ‘Super’ Brett in the bike. (10) PARIS PRINCESS N is worth a look on deep pick 4 and pick 5 tickets from the poor starting spot.

Race 5

(2) NOT BEFORE EIGHT continues to drop down the class ladder in search of form and quite frankly she should destroy this bunch. Hopefully Campbell will fire her up behind the gate and show early speed. Her last two victories came when she was sent to the front. (1) TWIN B ELITE also moves down one level and gets a post break as well; contender if the top one pulls a no-show. (8) SWEETNSINFUL moves from the recently suspended Milici barn to Mark Ford. I truly have no idea what to expect but I tend to give horses moving out of high percentage barns one start before downgrading. (6) RIGHT STUFF has proven to be a closing threat.

Race 6

(7) SUMATRA was steady from an outside post after missing more than three weeks of action. There really is no excuse for failure versus this group. (5) EXQUISITE GLIDE finished well from an impossible spot in his first start since April. Everyone will be expecting an even better effort now and while he could very well win, expect a short price. (3) A J DESTINY moves into a new barn that has posted a couple of wins during the meet; worth a look. (1) POUNCE HANOVER is more than capable of winning if on his game. That seems like a big IF right now.

Race 7

The pick four kicks off with a very difficult to handicap race. I’m providing a very narrow call to (4) IDEAL NUGGETS, who was left with too much to do last time out and should be in closer attendance tonight. (8) SHEEZA SHARK N got back in the winner’s circle last Thursday and should be tough again. (2) BLUSH HANOVER gets a new Miller in the bike and might just get her preferred setup in a field with plenty of potential early speed to set her up. (3) TRUTH AND LIBERTY came up with a solid effort behind #8 a week ago. (1) CAVIART SHELLY could be an interesting player if kept in striking position for the first time in a few starts.

Race 8

Here is another difficult race and I’m really not thrilled with any of these trotters. Let’s swing away with (10) DETROIT RAPPER. He has no form to speak of but I’m hoping he can tap into his back class against a mostly non-descript field. (3) P L HOUDINI seems like the favorite off an easy win, but let’s face it, everything went his way in that victory. (1) O’WOW has been fairly consistent and should get into the number. (8) P L ICABOD scored by open lengths two back against weaker.

Race 9

(2) PAN LUIS OBISPO & (6) CANDY STYX N both come out of a race that was much classier than this one. One of them should be able to get the job done. (1) MAC’S SECURE moved into a new barn and won by 11 lengths at Freehold. I’d say she’s worth a look on the track now.

Race 10

(4) COUGHLIN comes off a strange effort where he was restrained early, urged to try to keep up nearing the half, shuffled and blocked on the final turn and trotted home willingly. Switching to the big track I’m expecting improvement. (1) STARLINGMOON ships down from Saratoga in career form and has to be considered. (9) MILLVILLE ROAD & (10) PERFECT ROAD have enough form to win if they can navigate the tough outside draws. (3) CELEBRITY MASSIVE has pulled off a shocker here in the past.

Race 11

(7) ALVAREZ closed reasonably well with no real shot last time at Yonkers and was sharp with two consecutive wins prior to that at Saratoga. (3) DYNAMIC EDGE comes out of the same race as the top choice and didn’t perform badly. (10) METATRON was ninth through slow fractions at Yonkers and had no chance last week. In just his third start on Lasix and in this barn, he seems capable of improving. (6) BATTLE MAGE & (5) SHE’S UNCORKED both have early speed and could take these a long way.

Race 12

(1) FAT LADY RETURNS comes off perhaps the best mile of her year. Perhaps the cold weather agrees with her. (4) ROCKERS ALLEY blasted down the road against similar last time; clear one to beat. (8) FREETIME drops down the class ladder but could lure Tyler Smith off #4. (6) RELENTLESS SPIRIT & (7) GENTLE JANET could be a threat with a smooth trip.

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