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Woodbine Harness: Saturday 2/2 Analysis
Race 4 - $50,000 Guaranteed Pick Four Pool
Best Bet (6 - 13 / $24.00): NOWUCIT NOWUDONT (6th)
Spot Play: HOUR LAVEC (9th)
(3) CAMAES FELLOW was my best bet last week and he came up a nose short. He drops slightly in class, draws inside and I expect another top performance. (6) ANDERLECHT also lowers in class after a second-place finish last week. At this level, he can never be counted out and likely won't provide a price. (7) TWIN B WARRIOR is due to put his best stride together and at this level, it very well could happen.
(4) VIMY RIDGE was my top selection last week and he went a very tough trip. He now has another start under his belt since his layoff and is due for a win. If he gets a cleaner trip, he's definitely a threat. (7) PERFECT VACATION has finished in the top three in four of his last five starts. He enjoys being put into the race, comes from a top barn and has back-class. I'm looking for a much better effort from (6) ROSE RUN LIMO. He's a much better horse than he's been showing and he enjoyed a successful 2012 season. He's a chancy pick to have in third, but I'm taking a shot.
(6) SPARKY MARK has been the talk of the Preferred level in recent weeks with a 2-2-0 record from four starts. Last week he got outsprinted by CASIMIR JITTERBUG, who enjoyed a perfect trip, but I'm not sure if he can do it again. (2) CASIMIR JITTERBUG will look for the same trip as last week and it could happen from a post one start, but SPARKY MARK has been the most consistent horse at this level. (5) MYSTICIAN has been finishing second, third and fourth in this class in recent weeks and he's a good option to have once again. Don't overlook his $1.7 million in career earnings.
(1) IMA MAGICIAN TOO had a ton of trot last week before making the miscue due to equipment. This week, he draws inside and I can't see him getting away too far back. He does lack gate-speed, but makes it up with his solid final quarter speed. (9) YACKETY YAK is a recent purchase from trainer Auciello. The horse made a miscue last week, which is uncharacteristic of him, but he's capable of being a top threat in here with his talent and gate-speed. (4) EXCUSE ME PLEASE was aggressively driven by Ouellette two starts ago en route to victory and the same tactics may be tried again from an inside post. This is a deeper field in talent, so I'm not sure he can go the distance.
(7) GRIN FOR MONEY was used fairly hard last week to earn the front end, before tiring late in the mile. He races best when he's near or on the front and if he's not used to hard in the early going, I like his chances. (8) WORLD AWAY is at a level where he's very competitive and capable of winning. He's not at his best when he's on the front or too far back. He drops in class and is a 'must have' on the exactor ticket. (5) ODYSSEUS BLUECHIP has finished second and third at this level in the past two starts and is a threat in here. Although, I'm not convinced he can win, he's a good option to have for third.
(3) NOWUCIT NOWUDONT has been terrific in recent weeks with four wins in his last five starts. He draws inside, enjoys being put in the race and remains at the same level as last week. (9) HARBOR POINT has trotted fast miles at The Meadowlands, but has failed to win. I'm not sure if he can win against NOWUCIT NOWUDONT with his outside post, but he's a good option to have for second. (6) HESGOTLEGS probably can be the quickest off-the-gate, but I don't think he can go the distance at this level. He's fresh off a claim and new trainer Gillis always has his horses ready.
This is a very wide-open field in my opinion, but I landed on (2) C MAJOR HANOVER. He won two starts ago and dropped two second in last week's event. He draws inside and is capable of winning. I'm also looking for some value. (5) MC DYNAMITE has won two of three starts this season for top trainer Coleman. He fits a relatively low condition on this circuit and will likely be a major threat. (6) JUNIOR K draws fairly well and shows enough speed to be a factor. He hasn't had the best start this season, so I'm looking for his best effort yet.
(8) SING FOR ME GEORGE put together his best effort in the past two years. He moved hard to make the front past the half and held off all challengers to score the win in 1:51 3/5. He faces an easier bunch in my opinion and should provide another top performance. (1) SPEED AGAIN, in my opinion, might need another start to get his legs under him since his layoff. He did close well last week and has the back-class to be a major threat. This is a light field compared to the horses he's raced against in the past. (4) COOL ROCK draws well once again and I'm sure he'll make the most of it. He's won three of his last four and enjoys racing from behind. Look for him late in the mile.
(5) HOUR LAVEC is going to be my spot play of the night. He raced very well at Flamboro downs with an open-length win in a fast time. He gets off the gate very well and I expect to see him near the front in the early going. (4) PAIGING KADABRA had to overcome the outside post last week and was able to do so to finish third. He now draws inside and remains at the same level. (6) ZORGWIJK JOCK goes back into the condition ranks tonight after a second-place effort last week, beaten only by a neck. He comes out of Moreau's barn, which shouldn't be overlooked.
(5) FRANCESCHETTI gets Jamieson back behind the bike and this horse has been racing very well lately. He's got a quick brush of speed and races terrific off a helmet. He won at this level three starts ago and is capable again. (6) IDEAL ROMANCE made a miscue last start and that's not like him. He draws a better post and may provide decent odds. Don't overlook that fact that he won at this level two starts ago and comes out of the Coleman barn. (3) MODERN XHIBIT has continued to earn cheques in this class and the addition of lasix has appeared to help. He draws inside and Montini's barn has been better in recent weeks.
This race is very wide-open in my opinion, but I selected (2) CAMS TUX. He finally draws inside and shows enough speed to be very competitive in this class. He enjoys racing from off-the-pace, so look for him late in the mile. (4) REAL SAMART had post 10 last start, so I'm going to overlook that, but the start before he drew inside and came from behind to finish second, beaten only by a head. (5) SKY MESA is a chancy play, but he's raced competitively in this class in the past and shows enough speed. He'll need the ideal trip to earn a big piece and I'm looking for value.