Best Bet - (1) BALLPARKFRANK - Race 8
Spot Play - (9) DAVID LLOYD GEORGE - Race 4
Race 1 - (4) PRETTY BLUE ANGEL capitalized on a hot early tempo last out and stormed off to a big win. I’ll back the sharp filly for another tonight. (1) WILDCAT VICTORIA put forth a dominant qualifier in her only chartline. She’ll be in contention here. (8) ACEFORTYFOURLADYDI has showed consistent early speed and great results in her past three, but post eight may be too much to overcome with the two above trying to thwart her. I’ll use her underneath.
Race 2 - (1) MAXIM MISER gets the rail and little other speed standing in his way of going right down the road. He’s crushed foes at this level three times since racing’s restart; top call. (4) PRIVILEGE is typically competitive versus similar and will be a force once again. It’ll be close between him and the choice. (3) MAJOR ON THE BEACH showed much improvement in his step down last out. Do not discount.
Race 3 - (3) BATHGATE showed speed last out but couldn’t find the line in a second near miss in two weeks. In this field, I think he can get it done. (5) RJS INVICTUS has flashed ability in all career starts, but has come up short in all three. With a more aggressive steer, I could see him taking this. (4) DORSET BAY is liable to improve in his second start; consider underneath for a price.
Race 4 - (9) DAVID LLOYD GEORGE ships in from the New York circuit and could impress for the Brethour barn. I’ll play him and hope for a price. (2) HES GOT A VENDETTA is the form horse of the field, and his consistency could find him in the winner’s circle if the trip goes right. (5) DOC DARRYL beat the second choice last out, but will need to continue improving to take the win. Still, he looks like a top three candidate in this group.
Race 5 - (3) WINDSUN ARIA came agonizingly close to breaking her maiden last out in her best performance this year. Another solid effort should bag her a win. (5) STONEHOUSE ZEPHYR indicated a possible return to form with a much improved effort last out. She’ll need a better late rush to be a winner here; maybe. (2) BRITCHES SAY WHAT qualified very well after a two week break. She’s an interesting contender, and a price play in the exotics.
Race 6 - (8) LDL GEM has been saddled with rough trips in her last few goes. She should benefit from a hot pace this time and Boyd is just the man to pilot her to victory. (5) RUSTYS FLYING is a consistently good mare, but the pace scenario here means she may get hooked up. I’ll include her in the top three and hope she tucks in. (9) YNOTHOS comes off an impressive win through taxing fractions. She may find a good spot tonight and pass tired foes.
Race 7 - (1) ANGELS KID shows improving form. He finished well after a sustained first up bid last time. I’ll take him over (5) BLAMEITONTHEWHISKY due to the former’s better post and likely better trip tonight. The latter is also a top competitor here. (2) JANES ANGEL has been decent in recent weeks; she may carve out a good trip and take a minor share.
Race 8 - (1) BALLPARKFRANK has won four of his past five, and I don’t see any reason to bet against here. (4) FRONTIER CRUISE takes a big drop and should pose a challenge to the above. (8) FIRE STORM K T can pick up minor spoils if he isn’t forced into a terrible first-over trip once again.
Race 9 - (5) SIR GALAHAD has picked up right where he left off last year, winning his 2020 debut. He shouldn’t have much work to do to get the lead early, and may get away from them, especially in his Waxman barn debut. (6) SLY ELEANOR N drops massively in class, but is likely to be an underlay as her form is rapidly declining just months after setting a lifetime mark. She’s a risky play and the price won’t warrant a wager. (1) MISTER GODRO won on debut for the Steacys last week. He’ll have a shot tonight if the trip works well.
Race 10 - (3) JETSET CHARMER was outpaced by (5) MACHAPELO past the three-quarters in their July 18 showdown; I’ll take the former as he probably has more left in the tank, but the latter looks more impressive on the chartlines. (2) NATES BUCKY was third to the above two three weeks ago; he’s a consistent performer, so I’ll take him underneath.
Photo by John Watkins
Garnet Barnsdale is a veteran handicapper, bettor and racing writer who has worked as an analyst for DRF Harness for the past five years. He is also the current President of the Canadian Chapter of the United States Harness Writers Association.
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