Road to the Hambletonian 2012
The road to
the $1.5 million Hambletonian, this Saturday, August 4 has almost reached the
starting gate. We have followed the top
contenders and rated their performances on the stakes trail, starting with a Winterbook
Top 10. The outstanding filly Check Me
Out was number one every week up until trainer Ray Schnittker made a decision
on July 20 to enter her in the Oaks. So,
the top rated colt, Uncle Peter has led the way for the final two weeks. He was one
of three elimination winners and Hall of Famer Jimmy Takter will send out a
pair in this year’s final.
Peter – The son of
Cantab Hall was used pretty hard winning a competitive elimination in 1:53.3
over an off track, yet Ron Pierce assured us there was plenty left in
tank. The Breeders Crown champion at two
was coming off a perfect prep, a well controlled 1:53.1 score in a Stanley
Dancer Memorial division. This followed
a career best of 1:52.3 in the PA All-Stars at Pocono Downs. Jimmy Takter did express some concern over a
shoeing issue if the track were to come up sloppy.
2-Knows Nothing – Shipped in, sat in, angled out
and exploded home in a sharp :27.1 for the 2011 O’Brien Award winning team of
Jody Jamieson and Jeff Gillis, who look for a better experience than 2009 with
Federal Flex. This son of Kadabra
acclimated accordingly with a 1:53.1 career best coming off Lasix. He won the Canadian Breeders Championship
after a 35-day layoff and has come a long way in a short time.
Share – Capitalized
on some better racing luck with a perfect two-hole trip, and when Tim Tetrick pulled
the right line he knew Linda Toscano had this $16,000 bargain Revenue colt on
his toes. Fresh off the fastest
elimination at 1:52.2, the stablemate to Chapter Seven puts Toscano in her
second straight final.
4-Guccio – This improving Yankee Glide colt unleashed
his second straight solid runner-up rally and continues to go in the right
direction for Jimmy Takter. The NJSS
runner-up has proven he belongs, and with further fine tuning and some mayhem
up front his wicked sprint could payoff in a big way.
5-Archangel – Shipped in with high hopes, a
seven-race winning streak, a world record Yonkers Trot, plus other stakes and
track records, acclimated to the mile track by setting a rated pace, yet couldn’t
sprint with Market Share. This Credit
Winner colt looms as a possible threat to steal away, although Jim Morrill, Jr.
is noted for his patience and prowess in big money events.
6-Prestidigitator – Kadabra got another in this big
dance, and this colt has shown top level talent at two and three. In the Uncle Peter elimination, he acclimated
with a very wide trip around the first turn, got parked a long way and finished
a wide third. It was Sylvain Filion’s
first appearance at the Big M since winning back-to-back stakes with Goliath
Bayama in 2001.
Normand – The son
of last year’s winning sire Broadway Hall was forced into a first over grind
and earned the final qualifying spot based on earnings, while coming off Lasix. He won a Beal elimination in a sizzling
1:51.4, has been very consistent and Jim Campbell calls him a true professional
who gives everything he’s got every time out.
Newly minted Dash King Dave Palone makes his second Hambletonian
8-My MVP – Runner-up to Uncle Peter in the
PA All-Stars and PASS winner in 1:53.4 has peaked perfectly for the red-hot
Tony Alagna. The son of Cantab Hall
finished well enough in his elimination and has the Hall of Fame hands of
four-time Hambletonian winner Mike Lachance.
On My Mind – Gives
Cantab Hall a third colt in the final. This
guy had trot at both ends in a creditable second to Uncle Peter, but if he
employs more tactical speed, he will somehow have to come up with more late
pop. Andy and Julie Miller’s best of two
finals came with The Chancellor, who was fourth in 2009.
Tan Laundry – Last
year’s winning team of George Brennan and Noel Daley might try another Broad
Bahn mission if you look at the way he set a strong pace from post nine and
finished a solid third in the Goodtimes Final at 99-1. He was all out third behind Market Share in
his elimination, remains winless in nine starts this season, and gives Yankee
Glide a pair in the final.
Meadowlands Racetrack - 50 State Route 120 - East Rutherford, NJ 07073 - Call us at (201) THE-BIGM
©2013 New Meadowlands Racetrack, LLC. All rights reserved.