For harness bettors there are a few cards each year that are must-bets. The Meadowlands Pace card is certainly one of those. There are pool guarantees, an extra pick 4 and usually some excellent opportunities to make a little bit of money.
If you can read a harness program you can see the obvious contenders, but I'll look at a few horses I will be including on my tickets that are not so obvious.
Race One, $100k Sires Stakes Trot: True Blue Stride is a nice trotter who missed a week, which is not uncommon for a Harder student. He is 8-1 ML and up against some horses who will show speed, but if he looks good on the track I will take his inflated price.
Race Three: 3YO Open: I think Unlocked is one of the fastest three year olds out there if he can put it all together. Tyler Smith's mount will take a beating and is a likely winner, so this colt's odds will be high. I dislike betting horses who break for no reason, but he's a use for me.
Race Six, Misteltoe Shallee: At 10-1 ML, Weeper will be a use. She had a no chance trip in her last with the speed in that race. This week, off a week off, she should be ready to roll. She'll be higher odds than Gallee By the Beach, and she really should not be.
Race Eight, Haughton: This is an interesting race to go shopping, I think. The Captain has been overbet based on reputation and is two for his last six parimutuel starts, burning some cash. Sweet Lou is the standout, but last week's race was very tough; off a tough mile like that he might not be 100% on Saturday (remember his NA Cup as a three year old). This division is amazing because whomever gets a good trip can be there somewhere, and with those two taking a beating at the windows, there may be good value on the board. Ultra bomb Captive Audience is a nice horse who is very sharp. He has had no chance trips in his last few and was really live at the wire last time. I'll use him. I did not like State Treasurer's Gold Cup, but it was off a week after a tough race in London. He can win the race, I believe.
Race 9: Meadowlands Pace: What you see is what you get here, in my view. Whatever contender trips it out will probably win. I think Luckbewithyou will race better this week, and longshot Jet Airway might luck out and hit the ticket. I think the morning line is about right in this race, in terms of chances of each entrant. I'll watch the tote to try and find the neglected contender, more than likely.
Good luck tomorrow everyone. Enjoy the card.