Catskill Steve offers his picks for the guaranteed $10,000 Pick-5 pool at Yonkers Raceway on December 3, part of the U.S. Trotting Association Strategic Wagering Program.
Yonkers Raceway Pick-5, Races 5-9, Tuesday, December 3, 2013.
$.50 play: 256/35/4/57/5=$6
Race 5: (6) Doc Boyce chased a quick mile from the pocket at Harah's in last. Returns to Yonkers where she's raced consistently well at this level and looks best. (5) Super Classic hasn't done much at Harrah’s in recent but returns to Yonkers where she's been competitive at this level, adds lasix and seems to prefer the smaller oval having won The Charles Smith Trot at Freehold in September (albeit only three starters). The likely value play in this one. (2) Mergatroid shoots for 5th straight including two in Massachusetts Stakes events. Filly has quietly banked over $40,000 on the year and is a likely factor at or near the front-end.
Race 6: (3) Capozzo never got involved from 8-hole over sloppy surface in local return following a maiden breaking wire-to-wire score from 7-hole in 1:54.1 and a place finish in 1:51.1 mile both at Harrah’s. Gets better spot, switches to Brennan and freshman looks to be enough to handle his older foes. (5) Lex Lugar lacked a rally after pacing :56.3 middle half from tough spot at Pocono. Well-bred Canadian sophomore switches back to the half-miler where he's had some success and may go well at this level.
Race 7: (4) Brookstone had a tough uncovered trip chasing 1:53.2 mile against tougher when last seen at Yonkers. Returns off an even effort at Pocono and two 8-hole trips, one at Pocono and one at Saratoga. Picks up Sears for high percentage Allard barn and figures to be a handful.
Race 8: (5) ER Room finished with strong pace rallying in 1:52.4 Harrah’s mile last time after making a break from 7-hole two back. Four-year-old went a monster parked-out mile here in early October and showed good speed in last Yonkers try on 10/28. Will likely be leaving for MK and could be tough to catch if he does. (7) So Take That makes first start for powerful Burke barn off claim and has put in some gutsy efforts at this level here in the past.
Race 9: (5) Darth Bader ships east following two strong wire-to-wire scores in fast miles at Maywood against equally or slightly better foes than these. Finds good spot in field that lacks much consistency and can use his speed to take these down the pike.