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Old 03-03-2018, 07:51 AM   #1
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Meadowlands "Survivor": Sat., March 3

Race One:

3 DANISH DURANGO. This well-bred 6-year old brown horse gets post-position relief. He also has the driving services of the veteran reinsman from Cuyahoga Falls, OH (just north of Akron), Jim Pantaleano. The last time Pantaleano drove this horse, he won! This Andover Hall-bred appears to like a wet racing surface (I’m assuming the track will retain some moisture). This trotter should be forwardly placed. The trainer, Kevin McDermott, is using foam-rubber “flip-flop” pads; these ease the pain of sore knees. It helps the horse grip the racing surface. Others: 4, 1, 2, 8.

Race Two:

10 ROCK ON LINE. “Good Golly, Miss Molly,” this Rock N Roll Heaven-bred ran a monster of a race in his last. Yet, quite frankly, in this evening's race, there are two concerns: First, the starting post. When you race from “the outside” there is little room for error. Oftentimes, unless you charge to the front, you’re at the mercy of how the race unfolds. There is, as a result, little margin for error. Second, this bay horse is stepping up as he has won-out his lifetime conditions. All this has me taking “deep breaths”. Yet, I believe, to leave this guy off your ticket would be folly. “Double M,” Marcus Miller, reprises the drive for trainer Andrew Harris. Others: 1, 6, 3.

Race Three:

1 LIFE HAPPENED once again draws the pole. That’s a big plus. So too are the services of Monsieur Sorel du Quebec, “Le Frelon Vert,” Yannick Gingras. This Art Major-bred 3-year old bay colt looks like he’s getting acclimated to his East Rutherford, NJ surroundings. I’m looking for a big effort from this Jenna’s Beach Boy-bred. Blake MacIntosh trains. Others: 3, 4, 6.

Race Four:

8 IDEAL SHADOW is dropping a notch in the claiming ranks. He fits well in this company. This American Ideal-bred finished 3rd, a half-length off the winner, in his last. Jim Pantaleano’s in the bike. My only concern is that this fella has missed time on the racetrack (he last raced on Feb. 10). If this gelding is ready, he can prevail. Greg White trains. Others: 6, 3, 1.

Race Five:

MAY I CRUISE WEST gets both class and post-relief after a fading 8th place finish in his last. This Yankee Cruiser-bred has faced better. This 6-year old should be looking for the lead. He may well be “on the engine”. If he can clear or get an easy backstretch tuck (the winds should be howling), he immediately becomes “a player”. “Eric The Red” Abbatiello is in the bike for trainer Dawn Anderson. Others: 5, 1, 6

Race Six:

6 CHIP WALTHER has to work out a trip. The potential exists for a trip to the winner’s circle, yet all of the pieces have to fall into place. If A Nap can find some "live cover" down the backside, this horse becomes “a contendah”. This Art Major-bred has the potential; it’s just that he may be at the whim of how this race develops. A heated pace up front would aid and abet his cause. Tony Cuccio trains. Others: 2, 1, 4.

Race Seven:

5 DR J HANOVER is the new face in town in this preferred handicap company. Weren’t those some speedy times on Yonkers Raceway’s half-mile oval back in October for this Canadian champ. I guess you have to ask the question: “Is he, or isn’t he? Ready, that is, for his return to the races? Only his connections know. One thing is for sure; this guy is well-rested. You’ll have to make your own decision on this. I’d watch him on the racetrack and also on the board. Brett Miller drives for trainer Tony Alagna. Others: 7, 6, 1.

Race Eight:

5 DURANT has been in peak form in recent races. This Dali-bred gelding has been taking the overland route in recent races; yet he’s had something left in the tank to be most competitive in his final deep-stretch drive. A Nap will need to get into the flow and find "live cover" to mount a closing charge. One of “Monticello’s Finest.” Bob Lounsbury, trains. Others: 7, 6, 1.

Race Nine:

2 BIG GAMER is my “Survivor” longshot pick, though I doubt we’ll ever get this deep in the game. Yes, his races at DD have been nothing to shout about. Yet, make no mistake: the potential exists. A change of scenery, perhaps. “The Big M’s” wide, sweeping turns. That could help. I think you get my drift. Do I hear the words: wake-up call? The possibility does exist. One thing’s for sure, the inside starting post will help. Brett Miller is in the sulky for trainer Ed Gannon, Jr. Others: 3, 1, 5

Race Ten:

4 NOCTURNAL BLUECHIP is another longshot try. Why, you ask, are you selecting this horse? Oyez. Oyez. Oyez. All rise. May it please the handicapping public. Given: (what’s this, a geometry class?) that there ain’t much early speed . And given, that “The Orange Crush,” Andy Miller, is a solid get-the-horse-off-the gate driver. Then it would follow, logically, that Miller could very well be putting this Bettor’s Delight-bred “on the engine”. It would then be up to Miller to parcel out this brown gelding speed. If all goes according to plan, this McArdle-bred ends up getting his picture taken. The other half of “Team Miller,” Julie, is this gelding’s conditioner. Others: 5, 6, 3.
Walt (Teach)

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