The Slaughter Quandary: I know some people are sick and tired about me talking about horse slaughter, but racing has developed a real quandary. On one hand, people say we need to get people connected to the horses to increase interest in racing but on the other hand, little is done with regards to the slaughter issue. Racing can't have it both ways. If you want people to be interested in horses, you need to make sure they are treated properly for their entire life. They can't be disposed of as property.
Look at Standardbred Canada and the Ontario horsemen for example. All during the fight to retain SARP, articles were written how many horses will end up being sent to slaughter because the owners will not be able to support them, yet when SARP was in place, when was the last time you saw something written on their website about horses being sent to slaughter? While not adequate, at least the USTA has instituted programs like the Full-Circle program in an effort to provide voluntary protection of horses and on occasion has talked about the slaughter issue; but nothing like the thoroughbred program developed in conjunction with animal welfare groups.
I try not to use this blog as a soap box, but until the problem is adequately addressed, I feel the duty to occasionally discuss the issue. If some feel uncomfortable about it, so be it.
With that done, let's take a look at some of the Friday night action at the Meadowlands; specifically the John Simpson Memorial races for 3yo trotting fillies as well as colts and geldings
In the first division (race 1) of the Simpson for fillies, I like Caneel Hall (#3) who last raced in the non-wagering division of the Lady Suffolk at Freehold last week. Despite jumping off at the start, Caneel Hall managed to come back and lose by less than two lengths. Where she hasn't jumped off stride the filly has been close. Granted this may be a slightly tougher field but at 6-1, she's worth a look. After Caneel Hall, True Day Dream (#5) and Lady Dynamite are the logical contenders).
In the second division (race 2), I am going to toss Vida De Vie (#7), even though she won the wagering division of the Lady Suffolk at Freehold last week. Yes, she won but when four of six horses jumped off last week, you need to discount the effort. Instead, this race looks chalky as Miss Steele (#3) finished back a neck last week in her first start back. Andie Sophia (#5) is the chief contender, finishing fourth last week. If you insist in going three deep to play the trifecta, I will give Audio (#6) a chance to redeem herself for last weeks bomb of an effort.
Now turning our attention to the colts and geldings, the first division (race 5). Despite the horrible post, Fashion Blizzard (#8) is my top pick in the race being a winner of five races last year. However, if he falls below 2-1, I would take another look at Show Ticket (#4) who was a little short in his first race back; now being a bit more tighter. Cajole Hanover (#6) seems to have benefited from stopping early last year and given time to grow. We will see how much better the green colt is. For Super players, Muscle Mountain (#1 POE) is the stronger half of the entry and in good position to grab the final slot.
Lastly, in the second division (race 11), I am going to take a slight stab and go with My Man Can (#4) who won a prep race last week. At times he should brilliance last year when he didn't implode. Corky (#7) comes off three straight qualifiers. If you can get something above 2-1, he may be worth the win wager. After these two, you have to like Explosive Action (#6) who closed to finish second in his season debut as well as Tornado (#5) who seems to have the class advantage over these.