The Big Horse Handicapper provides a weekly handicapping column to the USTA covering races on Friday and Saturday. The USTA has given the Big Horse Handicapper a $100 mythical bankroll each week for wagering.
Happy New Year racing fans!
Last week was opening weekend at the Meadowlands and it proved to be very tough handicapping as longshots pretty much ruled the weekend. During the first couple weeks at any race meet can be very difficult to handicap as horses are coming in from other racetracks, but once they get a couple starts over the track things start to settle in and become easier in terms of handicapping.
Last weekend, we were left out in the cold but we almost got the win with a 22-1 Bettor’s Reward but after a picture perfect drive, he came up 1/2 length short at the Meadowlands and we only cashed a $30.00 place ticket for the weekend.
With that said we will head into week #10 in our handicapping venture and we will grab the bull by the horns as we once again will tackle the Meadowlands, Northfield, Freehold and a little bit of Balmoral’s action.
Going into week #10 we have wagered $896 and have now cashed for $787 leaving us a small deficit of $109.00.
Friday, January 4th
The Meadowlands Racetrack Race #1
#9 Zuerest (9-2) comes off a big qualifier and trotted very strong through the finish last time out. He has shown a tendency to break stride, but he will get the services of David Miller who does exceptionally well with troubled trotters. He has the speed, he needs to behave as we start the weekend.
The play: $10.00 to win #9 Cost: $10.00
The Meadowlands Racetrack Race #2
#6 Helios (8-5) is going to take plenty of play here and rightfully so, he has a record of 4 wins in 5 starts, he comes off a big qualifier and will be making his first start for the Julie Miller barn. #5 Volare De Vie (9-2) has been showing good speed in each of his last few starts and will be getting a key driver change to Ron Pierce. He is one that should be very close throughout and could be very dangerous in here.
The Play: $1.00 Trifecta Wheel 5,6/5,6/all Cost: $16.00
The Meadowlands Racetrack Race #3
#6 Bittersweet Best (6-1) was outkicked last time by a 99-1 bomb, but she raced very well off that 23 day layoff. She remains in a similar class, she will retain David Miller and is our pick in this field.
The Play: $10.00 to win and place #6 Cost: $20.00
Northfield Park Race #14
#4 Harmony Oaks Rebel (7-2) showed speed last time out, was parked out going to the quarter and finished second to an absolute dominating winner. He wasn’t up to that 1:53 mile last time out, but he will drop in class and should be very tough in this field.
The Play: $2.00 Exacta 4/1,3,5,7,9 Cost: $10.00
Saturday, January 5th
Freehold Raceway Race #5
#1 Love to Rock (2-1) has been absolutely dominating; he has won six in a row and draws the rail. #2 Star of the Game (4-1) also draws inside in what could be a lineup race right from the start.
The Play: $5.00 Trifecta 1/2/4,5,7 and $1.00 Trifecta 1/2/3,6,8 Cost: $18.00
Balmoral Park Race #1
#2 Specially Sporty (8-1) is one we will tag as our longshot play of the weekend. He had no chance last week as he was totally blocked through the Balmoral stretch and was unable to be driven through the stretch drive. He draw an inside post position, he shows very fast last ¼ speed and will need to stay close and unleash his consistent late kick.
The Play: $4.00 to win and place #2 Cost: $8.00
Meadowlands Race #1
#5 Doomsday Hanover (3-1) missed by a nose against similar last time out and he has been razor sharp in each of his last 5. He is the one to beat. #2 Yo Cheyenne Rocky (9-2) has been closing fast and should benefit from the inside post draw.
The Play: $1.00 Trifecta 5/2/all and 5/all/2 Cost: $18.00