Tomorrow is elimination day for the Adios Stakes at the Meadows. Quite honestly, I am puzzled why they are staging the eliminations during the day; the first elimination is slotted to go off at 2:55pm. One would think they would have carded a Friday card with their normal 6:20pm post time to maximize the number of fans able to see the best three year olds. If it was on a Saturday, I could understand running the eliminations during the day like the final; but on a Friday?
That being said, let's review the races:
9th Race - Adios Elimination #1
#1 (pp 2) - If I Can Dream (5-2) - Had a horrible trip in the Meadowlands Pace. Meets easiest field in a while.
#1A (pp 9) - Vertical Horizon (5-2) - Winner of Jersey Cup. Fresh; makes entry that much tougher.
#2 (pp 1) - Roadway (10-1) - Failed in Reynolds and PASS; meeting better.
#3 (pp 3) - Born to Rockn Roll (8-1) -Closed nicely in last. Driver change to Palone. Best local chance?
#4 (pp 4) - Vertigo Hanover (6-1) - Snappy :26.4 last quarter in 3yo Open last week. Lands part.
#5 (pp 5) - Ideal Danny (8-1) - Not off last.
#6 (pp 6) - El Cucuy (9-2) - Meeting better this time.
#7 (pp 7) - Chasin Racin (7-2) - Just can't get a good post.
#8 (pp 8) - Clear Vision (10-1) - Overmatched
Selections: 1 - If I Can Dream; 4 - Vertigo Hanover; 3 - Born to Rockn Roll
10th Race - Adios Elimination #2
#1 (pp 4) - Built to Drive (15-1) - Better than shows, could pick up minor spoils.
#1A (pp 9) - Johnny Z (15-1) - Completes tough Teague entry; post hurts.
#2 (pp 1) - Panmunjom (20-1) - Little success against open company.
#3 (pp 2) - School Kids (9-2) - Won't keep up with top pick.
#4 (pp 3) - Doubleshotasscotch (6-1) - Tested for class this week; expect to fail.
#5 (pp 5) - Well Said (8-5) - Obvious horse to beat. No value.
#6 (pp 6) - Upfront Hoosierboy (10-1) - Ambitiously placed. Pass.
#7 (pp 7) - Keep It Real (3-1) - Second best. Prepped in 1:51 last week. Will be there if Well Said fails.
#8 (pp 8) - Mobile (20-1) - Dream on. No chance.
Selections: 5 - Well Said; 7 - Keep It Real; 1A - Johnny Z
11th Race - Adios Elimination #3
#1 Precious Medal (7-2) - At top of game, best hope of locals here.
#2 Mr Wiggles (6-1) - Nice prep in Reynolds. Been frustrating when it counts. Consider if odds favor.
#3 Vintage Master (5-2) - Great closing kick. One to beat.
#4 Rusty's All In (8-1) - Minor spoils at best.
#5 Sheer Desire (10-1) - Faltered in Reynolds. Scratched sick last start. Does pick up Sears.
#6 Straight Shooting (9-2) - Threat if minds manners.
#7 Fireintheshartk (10-1) - Sharp start at Pocono; fails versus stakes caliber. Pass.
#8 Bunkmeister (8-1) - Ambitiously placed.
Selections: 2 - Mr Wiggles; 3 - Vintage Master; 6 - Straight Shooting
Unfortunately, it looks like chalk in the first two divisions. Value seems to be presenting itself in the third division.
Since I will be away on Saturday, let's take a look at what else is going on this weekend in harness racing.
On Sunday, the Ben Franklin Final will be held at Chester. Other than the Adios eliminations, this is THE race in harness racing this weekend. Mister Big, Art Official and Won the West will be duking it out on Sunday.
The Meadowlands has two divisions of the Tarport Hap on Saturday, named after the ill-fated super mare. Ginger and Fred looks like the one to beat in the first $81,000 division; Yellow Diamond leads the second division. North of the border, is the Maple Leaf Trot. Will Lucky Jim continue his amazing win streak?
On Sunday, Bangor Raceway hosts the $25,000 Paul Bunyon Invitational Pace. This race is of note as Jason Bartlett heads north to drive On a Tear.
The first sign of spring is the swallows returning to Capistrano. The first sign of fall is the return of standardbred racing to the Red Mile. On Sunday, the Red Mile hosts the Mercer County Fair stakes. On August 2nd the Red Mile hosts the finals of the KYFS which will lead into the start of the regular Red Mile meet. While most people are familiar with the Grand Circuit meet, the racing during the regular meet is not bad as there are plenty of late closing events.
Enjoy the racing. The racing only gets hotter after this weekend.