Handicapper Blog

Posted by Ken Warkentin on Tuesday, June 30, 2015 2:12 PM


2-J Eagle Feather – First or second in five of six, while starring in NYSS, improving Linda Toscano trainee figures to be on or near the pace from the rail in a competitive opener


7-Artistic Major – Has come around in three starts since the sick scratch for the potent Steve Elliott barn, nailed J Eagle Feather with a perfect trip at Vernon & will likely be blasting to secure stalking position


1-Dreams Beachboy – Lightly-raced colt has quickly shown signs of brilliance for Tony Alagna, just missed as the even money favorite to a revved up Rufo last out & heads a strong three-ply entry



3-Libertarian – Jan Johnson Hambletonian eligible added trotting hopples & surprised a few with that gutsy upset last week, rewarded with an improved post


5-Lady Winona – Been developing some consistency lately for Team Orange Crush in NYSS & had no chance in the Empire Breeders Classic Final, figures to be in a stalking mode here


2-Southwind Stryker – Hambletonian eligible flashed some talent as a freshman, ships south into the Takter barn after a miscue in his 2015 debut, smooth Mohawk qualifier on 6-16 is encouraging, yet may need a spin here



8-Icommandmyspirit – Big M lover was competing at the Open level here before some recent freshening, regained her winning form at Pocono & finds a field begging to be beaten back here


2-River Runs Thru It – Pace compromised & outsprinted fourth behind Sayitall BB last week, yet the career best 1:50.2 before that, post two again & Michael Russo factor make her a serious contender again


5-Sayitall BB – 2014 Breeders Crown winner dropped in class again & disappointed the chalk players by squandering a perfect trip, lands in another prime spot to atone for Team Burke, yet the jury is still out



5-Muscolo – Flashed sudden positive speed last out at Harrah’s Philly, took his mark of 1:54.1 here this season & gets more class relief


1-Exquisite Glide – Fired out, shuffled & angled with some decent late trot two weeks ago, strong runner-up before that & moves inside


3-Home Turf – Sat a late jammed in three-hole, angled & was closing on a well-rated winner, makes his third start off the bench from another inside post



9-Windsong Gorgeous – Could obviously thrash these on his best day, flashed signs of coming around just before the sick scratch, drops again after a needed start & could be blasting


4-Rich Wisdom – Grand Circuit stakes winner at two for Team Burke hasn’t recaptured that form against top PA colts, parked as the beaten favorite last out, back on the mile track in a softer class


3-Garnet River N – Hinted of a turnaround in his last two at Yonkers, getting class & post relief here in a real mixed bag field riddled with question marks



7-Flyhawk El Durado – Classy 4YO stormed home in a wicked :26.4 from post eight back on 5-29 & then got nosed out as the beaten chalk, have to forgive the miscue last out


2-B Yoyo – Gelding regained his winning edge & confidence with a career best 1:53, then just missed with a :27.2 surge last week & lands inside again


9-Handover Belle – Have to show this mare much respect for her class & success over this oval, 1:52.4 winner here on  5-15 can bounce back from a rare miscue in the Armbro Flight  



5-Bolder – Decisive winner of his division in the slop last week given a great drive by Jim Marohn, Jr., note the narrow loss in :26.2 on 6-13, that late kick will serve him well when the speed cancels out


3-Kingofthejungle – Acclimating quickly to the mile track with a sharp two-move narrow loss from post eight, while locked in late, rewarded with an inside draw in a wide-open final & sports some back class lines


1A-Jin Dandy – All of sudden has learned how to win, taking three of his last four & lowered his mark to 1:51.3 from post ten on 6-20, rallied right back last week & heads a strong entry despite post eight



2-Respectable Dream – Tripped out to take a new mark of 1:51 in a pretty tough N/W of 5 at Harrah’s Philly on 6-7, beaten favorite got underway too late last time at Tioga & draws well here


4-Verdad – Team Burke trainee took advantage of a class drop to post two straight blowouts at Harrah’s Philly, can keep it going in this camera-shy field


6-Madiba Magic N – Beaten chalk tired in the slop in his second US start, raced giant in his debut here before that & gets a bit of class relief here



4-Hez A Buckeye – Has come around in his last two, did the bulk of the work in the slop last week, 4YO lands in a new barn via the claim & draws an ideal post


8-Untouchable One – Gelding has suddenly caught fire winning two straight & was claimed again last week, expect more aggressive handling as he goes for another short series final from a demanding post


5-Astreos Flash – Classy 11YO atoned with a well-rated wire-to-wire in the mud last Saturday, fresh claim will likely be blasting again



1-Prince Palani – Lowered his mark to 1:52.4 at Vernon Downs on 6-20, had some late on the rail out of a shuffle last week, draws well as part of a freshened up Harmon entry


3-Mambo Italiano – Beaten favorite got jammed in late & was surging inside, recent claim remains a live item & will be leaving for stalking position again


4-Bettor Not Miss – Just one for 20 this season, yet has really taken to the mile track here in his last two, stormed home from a tough spot in the slop last week



1-Steady Pulse – Have to excuse the poor performance in the slop last week, was tangling with slightly better recently & draws the rail here for the high percentage Michael Russo


4-Six Gun – Drops back to the bottom rung for Team Bongiorno after making a premature move to the front through a torrid pace in the slop


5-Some Major Beach – His two tightening miles at Harrah’s Philly were dull, but owns a bit of back class & this is a real soft spot to wake up & exploit



4-Bettor’s Edge – Towered up late from a tough spot to hit the board in the Mohawk Gold Cup, second here before that, Burke trainee is fresh & sharp on the comeback from a sick scratch back on 5-9


5-Art History – Was swarmed in on before he was run into in the stretch of the Mohawk Gold Cup, was virtually unstoppable here, chance to regain that form



2-Mister Virgin – Was hard used to a mindboggling :52.3 half & still had more to give Melmerby Beach a late scare, that’s 11 seconds in 2015, yet persistence sometimes pays off



6-Acelo Hanover – Lowered his mark to 1:50.4 with a convincing score fresh off the reclaim by Michael Russo, then scratched sick & missed a month, difficult call with the stale date, but not much to beat here


3-Stormin Rustler – 11YO warhorse was a gutsy winner from post nine on 6-13, then tired in a short series final last out, chance to rebound in a soft finale


9-Smellthecolornine – Has taken a few starts to come around since switching to Jennifer Lappe, a distant third in the slop last week at 45-1, beware of the back class if the trip somehow works out






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Ken Warkentin has been a member of the award-winning broadcast team at Meadowlands Racetrack as the Track Announcer and television commentator for 25 years. Ken has appeared on national television networks such as ESPN, called 15 editions of the $1 million Hambletonian, and worked as a member of the broadcast team for NBC Sports and CBS Sports.

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