Many harness handicappers like to criticize prep races for being non-competitive affairs. Tonight in the Haughton Prep at the Meadowlands it was anything but. Jody Jamieson drilled Dali hard from the get go and put the hammer down. Tim Tetrick in a pretty wild move, tried to quarter pole into the quick pace with Shark Gesture and was rebuffed. This tangle set the plate for the backfield and longshot Won the West swooped to take the win. This prep signalled a potentially tremendous final next week. Often the best 4YO's retire at three. This year it is not the case and that makes for some very good racing.
Drop Red won a conditioned race, taking advantage of a bit of a duel as well, proving that horses do not know what their birth certificate says, they just race. He made older horses look ordinary and won easily.
I took a stab at the Meadowlands Pick 4 tonight. I liked Doug's Fame in the sixth as I thought the speed try last week would sharpen him up if taken from off the pace. I was right on that one. Then I took "all" in the next leg, thinking that the chalk was vulnerable. I followed that up with an "all" in the last leg. I chose to key Casie Coleman's horse in the third leg. Of course the 4-5 fave won the first "all" leg, and a short short won my other "all" leg. I missed my key. Did anyone ever say this was a tough game?
I played Mohawk tonight as well. As is often the case there, non-competitive fields were the norm and several of the races seemed almost pre-determined. Any live horse was well bet, and there simply were not enough alternatives to try and take a stab at. I find that there are only two races a night there to bet. The Meadowlands was not much better. I think I found two I wanted to bet there and one horse who I did take a poke at was 7-2 at one minute to post closed at 2-1. Playing harness is getting very difficult if you are a pure value searcher.
I watched a little Georgian Downs tonight and I must say that the Innisfil oval is becoming one of the highest quality tracks out there. Next Saturday is a huge night there and if you are a harness fan it is worth watching. You can watch and bet on Georgian via HPI in Canada and Twinspires in the states.