For photos from the Meadowlands contact Lisaphoto@playmeadowlands.com

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The" B" Track Tour Begins - Cal-Expo

Our second annual "B" track tour begins this week with a visit to Cal-Expo, the west coast outpost of harness racing.  Since many have Friday off this week, we will start this year's tour with the Friday night card at Cal-Expo. 

As many of you are aware, Cal-Expo is basically a closed shop; not by desire but necessity.  Some horses do ship down from British Columbia but with the exception of the Diamond Alliance Horses from Iowa, Wisconsin and Minnesota, the racing is purely Californian.  As for betting handle, Cal-Expo is certainly no Woodbine, or Meadowlands, but unlike some tracks with real paltry handles, there is a respectable amount of money wagered at Cal-Expo.  Last Friday over $685,000 was wagered on the fourteen race card.

The driving colony at Cal-Expo hasn't really changed over the years.  James Kennedy, Tim Maier, Luck and Rick Plano, Rocky Stidham, Steve Wiseman, and Richard Wojcio are the regulars who drive there.  On occasion you will see TV produce Alan Kirchenbaum and Trackmaster President David Siegel taking up the reins to race there.

Perhaps the biggest problem with racing in California is the shortage of horses.  Due to the shortage of horses, numerous races have uncoupled entries in order to card full fields.  The overall caliber of the horses is definitely 'B' level but to their credit, they don't artificially inflate the classes of their horses in order to card Open and higher classed conditioned and claiming races. 

One customer friendly service of Cal Expo is if you sign up for their mailing list, they will email you their track programs ahead of each racing day and send you the charts of completed races shortly after the nights races are completed.  Another gambler-friendly step Cal-Expo takes is they have race comments on each past performance line; something which should be mandatory for all extended parimutuel tracks.

The Cal-Expo wagering menu is as follows:
  • Win, Place, Show - All races
  • Exactas, Trifectas, $.10 Superfectas - All races
  • Daily Doubles - 1st and 2nd race; Last two races (14th and 15th)
  • Pick-4 - Races 2-5 ($10,000 GTD); Races 11-14 ($10,000 GTD & 15% Takeout Saturday Nights with 0% takeout Late Pick-4 on Sat nites for on-track and Twin-Spires account holders)
  • Pick-3 - Races 3-5; Races 4-6; Races 6-8; Races 7-9; Races 8-10; Races 9-11; Races 10-12; Races 12-14; Race 13-15
  • $.50 Pick-5 - Races 5-9 (Carryover $6,568)

Here are my picks for Friday evening's races at Cal-Expo.  First race is 5:45 PST.

1sr Pace - $1,700; F&M Claiming $2,500 - W150PS or Less
4 - Tonight Is Mine (R Plano, 9-2)
2 - Girls Lie Too (Maier, 2-1)
1 - Sleigh Belle (Siegel, 5-2)
5 - Wicked Beach (Isbell, 9-2)
Coupled: Sleigh Belle and Jane The Brain

2nd Pace - $1,700; Claiming $2,500 - W150PS or Less
3 - Davebro Bromace N (Wiseman, 2-1)
5 - Keyword Hanover (Bertrand, 6-1)
2 - Freedom Art (R Plano, 12-1)
9 - Pedal Pad (Cisco, 5-1)

3rd Trot - $2,700; Non-Winners 2 or $4,000 LT
7 - Dreaming of Amy (Kennedy, 9-2)
3 - Lookin To Leave (Jenson, 12-1)
6 - Franky Provolone (L Plano, 6-5)
2 - Goli Tie (Girard, 9-2)
#10 - Victory Felicia scores from the second tier

4th Pace - $2,300; F&M $4,000 Claiming
3 - Majestic Lass (R Plano, 5-2)
1 - One More Molly (Maier, 3-1)
5 - Cinnnamon (Cisco, 8-1)
4 - Charmer (Welence, 10-1)
Coupled: One More Molly and Little Kiera

5th Pace - $2,200; $4,000 Claimers N/W 1 PM or $3,000 LT
1 - Fancy Man (Desomer, 6-5)
5 - Desired Result (Silvestri, 7-2)
9 - WD Cowboy Justice (Schneider, 9-2)
4 - Spanish Harlem (Wojcio, 8-1)
Coupled: Fancy Man and Art Deco
#9 W D Cowboy Justice will score from the second tier

6th Pace - $1,800; F&M Claiming $2,500  - W100PS or Less
4 - Linnea Blue Chip (L Plano, 3-1)
2 - Rough Sailing (Cicso, 6-1)
8 - Agirlthing (Silvestri, 5-1)
7 - Pleasecasgnybett (Wisemann, 5-2)
#10 Mystically Mine scores from the second tier

7th Trot - $2,000; Claiming $2,500
  4 - British Spirit (Stidham, 5-2)
10 - Princess Joy (Maier, 8-1)
  5 - Mr Me (Jenson, 6-1)
  2 - Bit O Lavec (Wiseman, 6-1)
#10 Princess Joy scores from the second tier

8th Pace - $2,000; F&M Claiming $2,500
3 - Ogs Si Bon (Kennedy, 7-2)
6 - Hi Ho Serenade (L Plano, 3-1)
2 - Well Heeled (Svendsen, 5-2)
1 - Grooving Hi (Cisco, 6-1)

9th Trot - $4,300; N/W 5 PM LT or $3,100 L5  AE: $20,000 Claimers) 
  2 - Jam And Jelly (L Plano, 2-1)
1A - Rompaway Brandon (Maier, 6-1)
  3 - Easter Call (Silvestri, 7-2)
  5 - Berkshire (Wiseman, 8-1)
Coupled: Say It Best and Rompaway Brandon
#9 - Meringue scores from 2nd tier

10th Pace - $15,000; California Sires Stake 3YO Fillies
8 - She Is So Glad (Wojcio, 6-5)
4 - Upncoming Prospect (Wiseman, 6-1)
5 - One Hot Tamale (R Plano, 3-1)
2 - Thelady Isa Champ (Maier, 8-1)

11th Pace - $2,900; Claiming $6,000
2 - Chomp N Stomp (L Plano, 8-5)
7 - Grandpa Stevie (Siegel, 3-1)
4 - Schemes (Weisman, 10-1)
5 - Star Time Kid (R Plano, 6-1)
#10 Rude Awakening scores from the 2nd tier

12th Pace - $2,000; F&M Claiming $2,500
1 - Skyway Fantasy (Succarotte, 6-1)
7 - Brooklets Sundance (Stidham, 3-1)
6 - Sandra Hotspur (L Plano, 4-1)
3 - Scarlet Lite (Cisco, 10-1)

13th Trot - $7,700; LC - "Turkey Trot" Final
  3  - Daytripper (Stidham, 8-5)
  2 - Cherry Tree Rojo (Wojcio, 5-1)
  6 - Cherry Tree Nicole (Maier, 6-5)
1A - Try This (R Plano, 5-1)
Coupled: Sad Parting and Try This

14th Pace - $2,400; Claiming $6,000 N/W2 PM or $6,000 LT
3 - Culture Shift (Maier, 3-1)
2 - RW Island Spririt (L Plano, 2-1)
7 - Jeano (Wiseman, 6-1)
8 - Barona Hickory (Svendsen, 15-1)

15th Pace - $1,600; Claiming $2,500 - W100PS or Less
6 - Bolero Twiser (Maier, 2-1)
9 - Steady As A Rock (Svendsen, 15-1)
8 - Heavy Rain Warning (L Plano, 5-1)
2 - Red Star Gilda (Schneider, 8-1)

For those wondering where standardbred train out in the West, we found  video or such a horse training in the Nevada Desert. 

3 comments:

Rich said...

Hi PG,

Thanks for the video, its a real treat.
I agree with your comments about CalX; despite all the challenges their handle, benefiting from be last on the wagering menu, is still holding up. One thing I wish they would get better at is consistent post times. It seems like on Thursday they race through and then on Friday and Saturday the long time between races pushes the last race to around 11:30 Pacific.
Also, on this T Day, thanks for all the work you do on this blog!!!
Rich

Pacingguy said...

The problem with Cal Expo and their post times is the way simulcasting is done in California. They are limited in the number of signals and races they can bring in and thet slot those between their own races. This is why they have twenty four minutes between races.

Ivan said...

Pacing Guy: We in California appreciate you showing the rest of the country about our racing at Cal Expo. As many tracks without alternative gaming revenues we must find every way possible to generate handle which is the only we can increase purses. Our horsemen are real troopers and continue to put out good racing in a difficult environment.
Ivan