Sunday, December 14, 2014

The case AGAINST BURKE for trainer of the year.

I completely respect Perry Lefko and have enjoyed his writing on horse racing for many years. He is a fine writer and knows something about racing.
In the recent addition of the Harness Racing Update, Perry Lefko and Garnet Barnsdale did a point/counterpoint argument to state the case for either Ron Burke or Jimmy Takter to be named the Trainer of the Year. Lefko heralded Burke, while Barnsdale touted Takter. I think it is a third person, but mostly, I take issue with Lefko's points on Burke, and don't agree entirely but partially with Barnsdale's reasons for picking Takter. 
In this blog, I am going to challenge and, in my view, refute Lefko's arguments that support Ron Burke for trainer of the year.
We all have opinions. His are his, and mine are mine.
Nobody will agree with both of us, and I suspect most will agree with him and not with me. It's just how I see it, and what I know from my many years on the inside of racing, and what I still see when I go to the track. Nobody is right or wrong here. These are opinions based on determinations of what we see and what we think we know.
On to the blog.  

Year end awards, and really any type of awards, are mostly popularity contests. I think we all get that. At best, they are highly subjective, and at worst, they are voted on by those who aren't objective, or aren't really capable of being objectively critical. That is mostly because they are critics first, and not former participants who understand what it takes to be the best at the field they are judging.
And that's okay, as long as you understand that. 
Their choices come from a specific place.
When that choice contains Niatross, or Somebeachsomewhere, or even Muscle Hill, it is a no-brainer. But when you are talking trainers, performance and varying degrees of that, it's a tough call. We all have opinions and all come from different places to arrive at that decision. 
So, as someone who did train horses for a few years, and was very hands on at all levels of doing so, I have some understanding of the different levels that compose "trainers" these days.
I will lay those out briefly here.
First, you have the pure horse trainer. This type takes the horse, whatever ability and soundness level he has, and hones that to the best the horse can be over the amount of time he can maintain that. Some horses can do it long term, like say a Foiled Again, some can do it in spurts, like say a Sweet Lou, while others have incredible ability but have soundness and other issues that mean the trainer makes a huge difference in terms of how the horse turns out. Trixton definitely falls into that category, if you know anything about the horse. Others are horses that have a high level of ability, but need something extra the trainer can get out of them. McWicked falls into that category.

Second, you have the conditioner. Most trainers these days are conditioners. They take a somewhat ready made horse, and they get him to be the best he can be in terms of "now" performance. And clearly there is nothing wrong with that, nor  is that the easiest job either. The best trainers do better at this than the guys who are just a cut below them, and the ones who are a much lower level than even those. Most trainers are judged on their ability to condition horses and make the ticket. Burke, Takter and many others are all good at this. If you weren't, you wouldn't stay at the top. It is a minimum basic skill any successful trainer must have.I would say Casie Coleman is the best at it for the last 10 years, year in, year out, with just about any kind of horse. When she had claimers, she could take a 30 claimer and consistently improve them and even at times make them high end FFA horses. That takes talent to do it more than once or twice.

Third, you have the managers and businessmen. These types might have a certain amount of skill from the first two categories, but mostly, their best talent as trainers is finding the good horses, buying them, racing them where they can make money, selling them and getting more stock. They also usually carry very large stables so they have both the clout to do what they do best, and the means to always keep getting more. They are mostly volume trainers. They also can just rotate the good ones in and the bad ones to the farm for the proper rest. It is the best of both worlds if you have this option. Many trainers don't. They must keep working with tired, sore, lame or older horses and try to squeeze performance where it mostly isn't there. That is the reality of the business for the everyday horse trainer who isn't at the extreme top of the food chain. Ron Burke has perfected this system, one that Casie Coleman did before him. She made the blueprint and he improved it to an even higher level.

Nobody does it better than Ron Burke and Todd Pletcher in the T-Breds. They have honed it to an art form, with Ron Burke doing what nobody else has ever done, or thought could be done. Casie Coleman tried it for a while but it eats you alive over time, as she found out when she altered her personal and business model. Ron Burke gets off on it, lives for it, and certainly has become a successful and rich man by employing it. I take nothing away from him at all for that. I doubt he will continue to do so. At some point, it will wear you out.

If we were voting for Businessman or Manager of the year, then Ron Burke is the virtual slam dunk there. Nobody has ever done it better, and he seems to do it better every year, and top himself. The industry obviously has issues with that, and they are trying to reign him in, as Gural and others have put rules in place to shut that sort of thing down. Burke didn't like it, but he realizes he has no choice and will capitulate. I doubt you will see him continue to put up insane numbers like he did the last two years. But that has nothing to do with being a trainer. That is the business side of it. 

Highlighted in red are Perry's quotes from the Harness Racing Update piece, with his main arguments in support of Burke.

Perry has based his choice for Trainer of the year on the premise that, in his own words,

"Burke has proven his horsemanship"

I'm not sure what qualifies Perry Lefko to determine that. But lets say he is qualified to do so.
What was his argument?

"Never was his more dominance in this division more evident than in the Oct.31 Hoosier Park Pacing derby when Bettor's Edge led a quarter of Burke-trainees across the wire, sweeping the top four positions in the race."

You don't even have to know anything about horses, sports or betting to know that if you corner the market and have all the chips in the poker game, you will win. You don't even have to be a good trainer at all to do that. That has nothing to do with training. It has to do with monopolies, and its why it is frowned upon in our societies when big telecoms or banks try to merge and squeeze everyone else out of the competition. If anything, it lessens the strength of the argument in favor of Burke. I would be much more impressed if he took one horse like McWicked, had no others in a division, and make him the top horse. That is an achievement. An achievement Casie Coleman pulled off this year, and to some extent, did with Vegas Vacation the year before.

"Burke did a fantastic job with Sweet Lou, who will likely be in contention for Horse of the Year Honors. This was a horse that had been a monster as a two-year-old, winning 10 of 12 starts, but the consistency of his production had fallen off as a three-year-old and four-year-old."

It is here that I had my biggest problem with Perry's argument.
He is giving Burke credit for turning Sweet Lou around, when in fact, he is the one who messed him up in the first place. He even admitted that. 

"It might run counter to trainer Ron Burke’s intuition, but less appears to be more with Sweet Lou.
Burke changed Sweet Lou’s between-race routine and the five-year-old male pacer has responded with a four-race win streak heading into Saturday’s (June 28) $500,000 Ben Franklin Pace at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs.
It is Sweet Lou’s longest streak since putting together six consecutive victories bridging his two- and three-year-old seasons. Sweet Lou was the 2011 Dan Patch Award winner as the best two-year-old male pacer in the U.S. and earned more than $1 million at age three, but endured a stretch of just four wins in 31 starts prior to his recent surge.
“We’ve backed off on him and he’s become more like a Thoroughbred,” Burke said. “I can’t ask him to race four weeks in a row; I can’t ask him to train in between when he’s racing. I just give him weeks now where he basically jogs and hangs out in the field."

Now, good on Burke for realizing, as a trainer, he didn't do a good job with Sweet Lou. As trainers, we all make mistakes and we try to get better. But, it took Burke a long time to figure that out. He actually gutted him as a 3yo when he should have been shut down, and only because the horse was so talented and great did he even grind out a good living after his elim for the NA Cup, when he clearly came out of that with major issues. It showed all the way from then on into the Little Brown Jug, when he got a good enough trip to hang around for 2nd. But he was never good from the NA Cup elim on to his 5 year old year.
I propose that if Burke was a better trainer, and horseman, say like a Jimmy Takter, he would have done better with Sweet Lou. More on that later when I make my case for Takter.

"And then you think about Foiled Again, last year's top horse at the age of nine. He chugged it out 26
times this year, winning six times and finishing in the top three 19 times.

What did Foiled Again win this year?
Well, he actually won 4 legs in the spring for the Levy at Yonkers, when the competition was thin and there was a serious fear factor in challenging Foiled Again until the final, when he got beat by a horse that didn't beat anyone significant the rest of the year, and he won the Quillen at Harrington in September when nobody at the top end of the division showed up, other than Team Burke and his road blocking crew who finished top 4 out of 8. Other than that, he didn't beat the top ones and he hardly won anything. He had an okay year. A good year. He is 10, and he is a great horse. But Burke didn't do much to get any more out of him than he probably had. That isn't a knock on Burke or a pat on the back. It just means, as a trainer, he didn't make a difference. 

Foiled Again is a warrior. Ron Burke didn't make him that. He was born that way. Send him out enough times, and he will grind out money. As he has his whole life. I don't think Burke could take much credit for Foiled Again. He is one of those few, like a Rambling Willie or Cam Fella that simply makes a trainer look good.  No matter what you do. Trainers who have trained understand that. 
The best thing, again, that Burke has done with Foiled Again, was find him, buy him and classify him in the right spots to win as much money as possible. Give him big credit for doing that. That isn't master training though. 

Again, Burke has done a fantastic job with Foiled Again over the years. He found him, bought him, spotted him to make the most of what he brings to the table, and has kept him going for a long time. But as for this year, the year in question we are talking about for the trainer of the year award, Foiled Again didn't beat much of anything and ground out cheques. Because he is talented and gritty enough to just keep doing that, Ron Burke or no Ron Burke.  
Good on Ron Burke that he has kept him at this level this long. But this year, he didn't do much with him other than throw him out there and spot him. 

"There are other examples of Burke's talent, including his first win in the Little Brown Jug. He did so with Limelight Beach, whom Burke had purchased privately back in July. He steadily guided the gelding along, and Limelight Beach came into the Jug strongly. After winning his heat he went into the final as the even-money favorite and took the lead from the start and was never headed."

Again, what did Burke do best here? He found Limelight Beach, used his big time bankroll and clout to buy him, spot him, and he happened to draw really well in the Jug and used that to capitalize on that day. We have seen less than superstar horses do that over and over again on Jug Day. Nicks Fantasy and Fake Left come to mind, two horses that did nothing else spectacular in their lives other than what they did on Jug Day. If Limelight Beach had done something before the Jug, and after, then I might concede to Perry's point on this horse, but he didn't. He did nothing. Just another example of Burke doing what he does best, which isn't being a master trainer. That takes nothing away from him, again, it just states the facts. I think there is a major difference here between great training and doing great business. And basically, its where I differ in terms of what I view as Trainer of The Year material.

"Now consider another of his three-year-old pacers, JK Endofanera. He started his sophomore season with three consecutive wins and came into the North America Cup as the 11-20 favorite in his elimination. He finished third after leading for much of the way, but a week later in the final
when the big money was on the line, he won at 12-1 odds, coming from off the pace. Burke made some equipment changes after the loss, which combined with a brilliant drive by Brian Sears, contributed to the upset win."

But this is really where I diverge from Perry's point on Burke. I was at Mohawk for the Somebeachsomewhere and NA Cup elims. I can tell you that JK Endofanera wasn't right at all, and Burke didn't seem interested or care to even do anything about it. It was only a stroke of luck that the horse made the final at all. The final he was able to win. Burke almost screwed his owners out of a chance for the big payday because he wasn't doing his job as a trainer. 

"JKEndofanera...locked on a line in the stretch."

That was Ken Middleton's call in the NA Cup elim, one which JKEndofanera got a very soft half which allowed him to barely hold 3rd. Otherwise, he misses the final. If you watch the Somebeachsomewhere, he was bearing out bad as well in that, but also got soft fractions. 
It was very easy to see when he warmed up for the Somebeachsomewhere that he was having serious issues. 
 How do I know that? Because of a discussion I had prior to that race.
Garnet arrived a bit after me to the track, and asked me if I liked anything. I said I didn't like anything that much, but I didn't like JK Endofanera off the way he was bearing out in warm up. He was already hurting then. I told him he might even get away with it that night, which he did, but the next week, in the NA Cup elim, he was even worse, and got beat as the heavy chalk, as Perry noted above. If anything from the pack had any pace, he misses the final. And obviously, those issues were fixable, as Burke took care of it AFTER  the elim. Great trainers don't let that happen. Takter didn't with Trixton.  
After the NA Cup, he got 6th in the final of the Meadowlands Pace, 5th in the final of the Cane at Tioga, and 3rd in the final of the Breeders Crown after the top 2 picks were scratched the day of the race and from the post parade. Otherwise, he won a few here and there, but didn't really perform to what he showed as a 2yo and leading up to the
Is that Burke's fault? Maybe not. Horses fail all the time. But he certainly didn't appear to be on top of it. Not from what I saw. I would argue that he consistently got out-trained by Casie Coleman on McWicked all season with regards to those two horses. If McWicked didn't get locked in in the final of the NA Cup, he would have won that too, and Burke wouldn't have even won that race with this horse. At least he was smart enough to figure out he didn't have much left, so he went out and bought Limelight Beach and won with him. It's what he does. And does best. One isn't good, don't fix him. Just get another one. That isn't good training. It's good business. 

"And Burke proved he can handle a temperamental trotter in Mission Brief, who won nine of 13 starts in her first season of racing. In each of her losses, she broke stride, so Burke's patience was tried by this fleet filly that was purchased for $150,000 as a yearling."

What? You have got to be kidding. 
The best thing Ron Burke did with regards to Mission Brief is figure out she was a great buy and make sure he bought her. She is a freak of nature, and he figured that out because he had trained her mothers brother the previous year. Good on him, again, for figuring that out. 

"A daughter of Muscle Hill out of the 2007 Breeders Crown-winning mare Southwind Serena, Mission Brief was purchased as a yearling for $150,000 at the Lexington Selected Sale. She is owned by Burke Racing, Our Horse Cents Stables, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and J&T Silva Stables.
Southwind Serena is a half-sister to Southwind Spirit, a Muscle Hill-sired colt that Burke also trains. Last year at age two, Southwind Spirit won the American-National Stakes and Kindergarten Classic final.
“It was the reason we looked at Mission Brief,” Burke said of the family connection. “And she was beautiful. That ($150,000) was the most we ever paid for a yearling and we thought we got a bargain.”
But as for training her, she lost several huge paydays because she wasn't prepared mentally to handle the racing she was asked to do. Is that Ron Burke's fault? Probably not. She is a very temperamental 2yo trotting filly. Burke can't be held responsible for that. But he also didn't do anything to make it better. He just tossed her out there over and over again. Sometimes she behaved and sometimes she didn't. That has zero to do with Burke as a trainer, either way.
If any credit goes to anyone there, it is Yannick Gingras, who figured her out on his own at the end of the year on how to keep her mind on racing and get her to the gate just right. I doubt Burke had anything to do with that. Burke's smartest move, again, was not as a trainer. He is shrewd, and figured out that having Gingras on her consistently would pay off due to his overall talent. That was correct, but that isn't good training. It is good management. 

Gingras expert handling of Mission Brief in the final of the Breeders Crown, and to some extent the elim was one of the greatest driving feats I have seen in terms of a driver making a big difference. If anything, it sealed him as the driver of the year. For me anyway. I doubt Burke had anything to do with that. Other than putting Gingras down, which as I said, was a smart move, but not a training feat.

"But, he made 28 million. he's got to be the best trainer." 

That is the argument you hear over and over. Really? How much money your horses make determine how great a trainer you are? If that is all that matters, then Burke gets it. Hands down. No discussion. He clearly makes more money training than anyone else on the planet. And he probably could not touch a horse and continue to do that.

From the Harness Racing Update article. It shows that Takter had a much higher win percentage and almost 4 times the earning per start. So, he is better on both of those variables as well.

Now, lets look at Takter. I could certainly make a strong case for him, based on all he did, but mostly one thing he did very well that had everything to do with training the actual horse.

 "But most of all there is the "Taktertonian" which surely will stand out in the mind of voters. That race was a microcosm of Takter's brilliance and dominance and that's why he is your 2014 Dan Patch Trainer of the Year winner."

-That was Garnet Barnsdale's main argument in favor of Takter.

In his argument for Takter as the trainer of the year, my friend Garnet Barnsdale argues that Takter was so dominant with all his trotters, at all age levels, that he should get it. There is something to that argument, but again, while I am certain that Takter as a horseman has a lot to do with those horses successes, I would also argue that if Trond Smedshammer or a handful of other trainers had most of those horses, they would turn out as good as they did with Takter. Takter also has huge clout like Burke, and the types of owners who put up big bucks to buy the best out there. For sure, that is mostly because of Takter's ability and his track record. He earned his status and place at the top of the mountain. No doubt.
Father Patrick, Nuncio and Trixton didn't come cheap.
Neither did Lifetime Pursuit, Shake It Cerry or a handful of others. Takter isn't working with a host of 10k yearlings here. 
But wait. That isn't entirely true. Nuncio was a 7k yearling, and while Trixton was a 360k yearling, he was a major project and challenge to become what he did. Trixton had major issues. That is common knowledge and an understatement. 

 "After the race, Takter said he was concerned about Trixton. "Trixton, here I'm a little concerned over him," said Takter. "He had bad hind ankles, he had to have surgery in that one, and I didn't like the way he went behind the gate there and he got really rough. I think it could be the end of him [racing]." 

Takter managed Trixton to a T. He drove him himself, and he raced him pretty easy relative to how much he could have gone with the horse several times. He did just enough to win and never pushed him. He got him to the Hambo and capitalized when Gingras had a brain cramp that day with Father Patrick and decided to try something new on the gate. Otherwise, Takter would have won the top 3 in the Hambo, with Trixton or Father Patrick being 1-2.
Takter is a great trainer. There is no disputing that. Or shouldn't be. You could even say he is a master horseman. But that wouldn't get him trainer of the year for me if that was all he did this year.

 I worked with this horse (Trixton) every single day, I handled him from day one. He had to come a long way, I have to thank (Dr.) Patty Hogan, who fixed him up after he got hurt (sesamoid fracture at the end of his 2-year-old season). There are so many people behind you that have a big part. I’ve got a great team and I thank all of them for what they’ve done for me.” 

No, what he did with Trixton is what puts him over the top for me. If you know something about the history of Trixton, and what it took to get him to where he was and get what he did out of him this year, then you have no choice but to pick Takter over Burke, when you add it to all the other things he did, which Garnet laid out well in his argument for Takter. But, if you take Trixton out of the equation, then its a complete toss up. Burke? Takter? Casie Coleman? I would say all 3 are right there if not for Trixton. As a trainer, Takter made the difference for his owners. They won the Hambo because of Takter's training skills. That is why he is trainer of the year to me. 
Many won't agree with my take. And that's fine. They are wowed by Burke's numbers and the races his horses won. I'm not. Not as a trainer. As a businessman yes. He is the best there was to this point in terms of making money at training horses. Not because he is a great trainer. Because he is a very smart guy. He is a master manager. Takter is a master horseman. That is the difference. The difference for me.

Ron Burke wins more races than any other trainer in harness racing. So what? He also loses more. He wins 20%. That's great. But, he also has multiple entries in stakes races, buys fresh live horses and can rotate horses all over the country to find spots for them. He doesn't have to be much of a training genius to win races if he can do that. 
But he won 28 million. Yes, that's true. and that is a great accomplishment. But in terms of earnings per start, Takter has him by quite a bit. And I would say Casie Coleman has them both by a bit more than that. 
Just because you make the most cars, like GM or Ford does, doesn't mean you make better cars than Honda or Mercedes. Its a flawed argument to begin with. Volume and sheer numbers don't make a great trainer. Performance does. And in terms of performance, I would say Takter outperformed Burke, and Coleman outperformed them both. Coleman only slightly more than Takter, and that is a toss up which I would concede could go either way.

Is Ron Burke a very good horseman? Probably. You don't get to his level without being one. Is he a great horseman? I don't think so. Is Takter? I don't think there is any doubt about that. His track record speaks for itself there. As for Coleman, I think she has proven with all sorts of horses that she gets results. Because she is the best of both worlds when it comes to Takter's skills and Burke's eye for horses and management skills.
So, my case for Coleman as Trainer of The Year. I know she isn't going to be. But she is my choice.

"Then, McWicked came Coleman’s way last spring. Owned by Ed James, one of her longtime friends, McWicked was a well-regarded but underperforming 2-year-old. James asked for help. Coleman liked the horse and agreed to train him."

McWicked is a very nice horse. But Casie Coleman made him a great horse.

 “Casie said, ‘This is a real good horse. I can make him a great horse.’ So she did. I’m not that smart as far as horses go. But I’m smart as far as people go. And I’m fortunate enough to know good people and I’m fortunate enough that they’ll take my horses. I’ve had very good luck.”

McWicked is the type of horse that danced every dance he could this year. The type of horse that won more money than ANY other 3 year old this year. And she only had one 3yo male pacer of that caliber. She didn't have a barn full. She didn't go and get a few midseason to try and replace him. Her was right there in the NA Cup, won the Adios and was right there in many others. When he tailed off a bit, she fixed him up and won the Breeders Crown and Progress Pace. He was near or at the top of his game from May until mid December. When he needed shutting down, she did that, and brought him back when he was ready to perform again, and perform he did. It was master training, start to finish.
In addition, she dominated the Ontario Sires Stakes with a host of Sportswriter colts, none of which she paid that much for as yearling. Bob, Ben And John, Southwind Mischief, and a host of others took home several big paydays for her and her connections. In addition, she saved the best for last, bringing out Reverend Hanover to win out and prove that he is a likely contender for the big dances next season. She and her owners didn't pay much for him either. Her patience and skill as a trainer really showed on him. He was certainly ready to come right out of the box and dominate, which he did. Nobody would dispute that he was very well prepped to win every race that he ended up winning. It was training mastery. Something she has done many times over. She won two jugs in a row with Michaels Power and Vegas Vacation. One of those was a very lame horse, while the other was terrible gaited in his elim and she made a shoeing change between the elim and the final which was the difference maker. She had one chance at the 3 peat, with McWicked and got him there and he was competitive, although not good on Jug Day. Unlike Burke, she couldn't just go out and buy another one. 
She also did a great job with Major Dancer this year, who was probably not in the top 3 or 4 3yo fillies this year in terms of talent. She was 2nd in the final of the Breeders Crown, and spotted well all year to earn more than 400k. She won the Town Pro final at Mohawk and many NYSS races, and was right there in many of the big dances. 
I don't know her overall average earnings per horse this year, but I suspect per start she is far ahead of Burke and probably well ahead of Takter. 
And when she did have a huge stable like Burke, she had just as good numbers in terms of percentage winners and earnings per start. But its a tough lifestyle, and not one she wants anymore. That doesn't make her less than a trainer like Burke who seems to live for that. 
"Last winter, Coleman began training her own self. She had long been overweight, which, combined with her fast-paced and pressurized lifestyle, was turning her into an irascible boss. She took a sabbatical, hired a personal trainer, changed her diet and lost 74 pounds.
The backstretch is regularly fueled by coffee, cola, beer and stronger spirits. Coleman now drinks water and green tea.
“I’ve got about 10 more pounds I want to take off, and it’s still a struggle,” she said. “But I am a lot more refreshed. I feel better. I have more energy. And I’m not such a (expletive deleted).”
She is drawing lines in her early prime. Another line: No more claimers, and no more new owners or new horses. She has a share of most of the horses she trains. She owns valuable studs that draw healthy fees. She neither needs nor desires any other business."

In some ways, Casie Coleman was Ron Burke before Ron Burke was Ron Burke, in terms of the business end of training horses. She still is, she just doesn't have big numbers anymore. But her performance is just as good, and I would argue, this year, even better. 

So, my choice for Trainer of the Year is Casie Coleman. But, if you only gave me Burke or Takter, I take Takter, hands down. 

I guess, at the end of the day, I think Trainer of the Year should be based on something you actually did as the trainer of the horse. Burke does a lot of great things, but my view is that mainly they aren't training related. If you think the things he does are training related, you vote for him. If you think making a big difference on a great horse like Trixton or McWicked is what matters here, you vote for Takter or Coleman. I vote for Coleman, but I would concede Takter is the logical choice. 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Mohawk Notes: August 2014

Friday, August 29

Lookslikeachipndale..locked on the right line really bad.

A Real Commitment. Tough trip. Stayed in and had no room, had to swing out wide late and had no shot to catch the leaders. She can turn that around next time.

 Tuesday, August 26

Tymal Fireitup, fast leaver, pretty steady on her feet. Doesn't have the overall speed yet, but is learning and will come to it. Keep an eye on her to see where they spot her.
Seb. Very good effort. Made the move to the front from the 9 hole. Fought a bit when the leader engaged and passed him, then didn't give up and only got beat a length while holding his own.
Docs Hoss. Locked on the right line, and almost broken down lame. Total no play going forward. Party is over.
Twomickeytrip. very steppy and lame. Wouldn't play him even if he resorted to the B tracks unless he shows a smoother gait.
Roger Mach Em starting to show some wear and tear from chasing the stakes colts all year. Goes from play to play against.

Monday, August 25

Stonebridge Fable needs some rigging adjustment. He did appear to be lively.

Were Rolling. Good effort from the 10 hole. Closed about as much as you could ask from there. Hopefully a better post next  time and a closer up trip.
Key Topic, going sideways towards the gate. then sat and came up the rail, angled out then had some pace. likely he is better at the B tracks for now, but has enough go to beat those types.
Rocky Boy, no shot off that post and trip, but still only got beat 2 lengths while moving forward at the wire. If he draws good next time,  with his gate speed, he is a huge play.
Dialamara. obviously the hard fast mile at Georgian hurt him. He was on the right line bad even before the gate and got worse the farther he went. He will have to be watched to see if Fletcher can fix him up. He has a history of being able to do that.

 Saturday, August 23

Monster close by Nickle Bag, into the bias of a very fast back half. Big play next time if spotted right.
JJ holding Shakai Hanover together at the end. Trouble ahead.

Amigo Di Grande, lost momentum after working hard to get the lead when he let China Pearls go. Finished okay enough.
Lyons Levi Lewis. Unlucky that he was getting jammed up bad at the rail and had to pull earlier than he likely wanted to. Used his move than came under attack, and that made him short at the wire. Good all around effort. Better trip next time, better result.

Friday, August 22

Dont Rush trots like a really fast and classy trotter. He is still learning, but he will be a good one.
Marlee B finally appears to be coming back around to the form that had her competitive in the Preferred. Solid play next time.

Dreamfair Eclipse. Still lame and will fail when asked to pace on her own next  time.

Thursday, August 21

P L Halfway. Got a shade scrambly gaited when taken hold of, couldn't find his stride again. He is just plain green.
Stuarts Dynasty. Good all around effort. trots steady, like an aged horse.  Not driven to win, and not much urging right to the wire. Finished well, and is a prospect for sure, but maybe not ready to win yet.
Odds On Cygnus. Solid effort. If others fall apart next week, she is the likely one to pick up the pieces.
Miss Dollar Mam. Huge. Certainly improved off the claim. But, lathered up huge and pulls hard. If she comes out on the track again like that,  she is very beatable. If she doesn't, she should easily double up on this bunch.
Life Is A Beach. One speed horse and also bearing in quite a bit in the lane. She will be a chalk money burner for weeks as she continues to just get beat.

Boli ran when Zeron pulled the plugs and might have kicked him by accident when he did that. Green  horse. I will give him a pass on that.
Looklikeachipendale was very impressive, followed well and closed solid to only be beat a length. Certainly looks like a maiden winner if he continues to mind his manners.
Lily Pad Hanover. Horrible gaited horse. If she goes back to the B's, with that fast line on her card,  and no break,  she will be hammered down and a huge play against.
Minestre Hanover. Pretty lame. He has 5 claimer in about a month written all over him. Big play against next time
Useful Hanover. Running in very bad. Wont beat these.
A And G's Badboy. Very lame. Putting in ugly steps most of the way.
World Peace outlasted a bad bunch and is pretty sore.

Hie Benny needs softer competition, where he can make the lead easier and not have to go as much to keep it. He will be a lot more dangerous at  KD or Georgian until he matures, at which time he might be able  to go WEG speed.

Regazzo Dolce needs a lot of finessing to keep him trotting. Likely false favorite next time when he is driven  to win.  He has run written all over him.
Mario Bi is very green,and made a break because he hit his nose on the horse who was in front of him, whom he didn't want to follow. Good play next time.
Another good effort for Migrate Blue Chip. He will hook a softer bunch at some point when he can win in 54 and get it done. Doesn't appear he can handle the better ones.

Exemplar made a break after leaving good when he got jammed up a bit on the rail. Henrickson doesn't have the best set of hands or reaction time. Horse trotted good the rest of the way. Look for a good bounce back effort next time at a nice price.

Graceful Melody would be much better at the B tracks where her gate speed and lack of finish would help and not hurt her.

Tuesday, August 19

Little Ben is running in bad in the straighaways. Might be better at the B's by gaining the lead then not having to go so far in the stretch.

Joseph Girard is very lame. He can blow up just about any time now.  If he is anywhere near favorite status he is a great play against.
Titus Seelster. Locked on the right line the whole way. Huge play against next time.
Suegrabittandrun. made a nice pre race appearance and  raced  good, closing fast from  the backfield to finish a solid 6th.  Might even get  it done next  time at a good price.
Shippen Out. Looks like he is hurting pretty bad. Line flatters him. Either in a maiden or Sire Stake, he is a good play against. Worse even on the turns.
Jimmys Secret. Terrible drive to put him in a position where he had to check him behind two stoppers.  Finished up okay. Better on the engine, where he likely will be back at the B tracks next start.

Monday, August 18

Were Rolling. Tried to leave but wasn't steady enough to gun from the 9 hole. Sat in, had some traffic trouble as a few breakers stalled the flow, then moved off the rail and finished strong with some trot. Not sold on him yet, but there is something there.

Lmc Marshmellow  notes

Unrelenting.  Troubled trip. Left out, had a hung horse outside her. Let her go when he could have left her out there, then got backed into, came back on sharp on the rail and almost got there.
Machmeter, very green filly, who obviously was not schooled enough times. had to show her the whip to get her to go to the gate, then she tucked, followed most of the way, and finished strong with tons of pace. Big strong filly. Should go forward with more experience.

Adaymer Seelster. Modern Art mare. Sharp right now, but still hurting. She is a race or two away from reverting back to her very poor form of the winter.

Danielle Hall is a very tough filly. But she has gone some big trips and I saw a bit of wear at the end of this mile. Good play against next time at a likely very short price.

Battle Mage appears to have some go, but she is immature. Hard to keep her trotting, although Jackie Mo did. I would be watching for signs of advancement ahead of a big score.

Abbijade Hanover, left hard, sat well and finished strong. Can't ask for much more from a developing 2yo. Wont be long until she gets it done. I would be willing to take a short price on her if the field is lean next time.

Cheekie is very tough to drive. Would only bet her if I knew she could make front and go down the road.
Mego Moss. Locked on the right line. Still a play against wherever he races him.
Southwind Warsaw looks lame all the way around the track. Play against even on a major drop in class to KD or Georgian.
R Raised Emotions. Just coasting in 52.3. Hard to say where the bottom is on him. Ben B has found the key to him. Might be a preferred trotter.

Upfrontluckycarol raced solid. No touching the tons the best sharp winner. 

Decisive Destiny. Bearing in just enough at this point to get beat. Either he will get worse, or they will solve that issue. He is either a great play if they do, or play against if they don't. Have to watch him post parade and score out to tell where he is at.

Saturday, August 16

Amigo Di Grande was obviously short being off that long. But he trotted straight and seemingly sound. Right back in that class with a decent post, I would play him.

Love what I've seen from Fork lately. He has truly become a racehorse the last couple of months. If he keeps on this path I can see him becoming a Preferred horse come winter time. He is very rateable and tractable now.

Race 3

Cashaway is going the wrong way on the form cycle. She is ripe for some money burning chalk action in the fall if they continue to send her out there.

Race 5

Zeron did a great job holding A Plus together in spite of her obvious lameness. Her line looks a lot better than she actually was, and she will likely be way overbet next time. Great play against if she meets a relatively soft bunch who can make her heavy chalk.

Race 6

Dudes The Man is a big time rat. Will play against him anywhere he goes in stakes company.

Race 7

Shamballa started to show some wear and tear this time. Was steppy gaited from the turn home and Zeron held him together while he kept driving him. Likely why he flattened out this time. View him as a play against next time.

Race 9

American Legend seems like a grinder. Not much gate speed, no big one brush move. Just nice overall speed, but maybe not stakes caliber at this point. Certainly he will break his maiden if he heads back out of stakes company, which is unlikely. Otherwise, he will continue to pick up minor shares, but not win.

Friday, August 15

  Race 1

Very strong effort the two moves he made, one from the 9 hole leaving and the other first up into a strong 3rd quarter. He has winning form written all over him with a better post and trip. Seems like he keeps trying hard right to the wire.

Moonwriter stayed in all the way and didn't thread the needle through until very late at which time he was 2nd for sure if he had more momentum. Likely short price next time, but would be a solid play if he fails that time but races okay for the time after that.

Race 2

Strong Profile, All over the track, extremely green and bearing in a bit, but had lots of pace in tight quarters many times in the stretch. Will be watching to see how he develops. Might be better out and rolling in a maiden at the 5/8 B tracks. Big horse from the looks of it.

Ace of Clubs solid effort but a well beaten 2nd best. He is coming along.
Nor Star Renegade Small horse who appears to have hit a wall speed wise. Back at the B's, where his gate speed and handiness can serve him better, in the right class with the right post, he is still viable. At the bigger tracks with better ones like this, he is likely to be outpaced down the lane, as he was tonight off a very soft trip.

Race 3

Majestic Ginger. Good drive by Steacy, Babied the crap out of her. She wont beat level competition again if that is what she needs to get it done. Gapped the gate bad and under a strong hold to keep her trotting the whole way with a 30 second last quarter against 5 claimers.

Race 4

Hustleonhome, parked all the way to the half in scalding hot fractions from the 9 hole, didn't quit bad. Still like her in this class from a better post next time. 
Brushstrokes hung bad in the lane. See a bit of decline there. Play against next time at another likely short price.

Race 5

Mr Carrots. Bearing in bad in the first turn. Can't see a horse like that doing okay at the B tracks. Good play against if he tries him there.

Surf Report didn't look right to me on the track in the post parade and raced greenly and poorly. Maybe he can be fixed up. Have to keep an eye on him. Might just be 2yo baby stuff he can work his way through.
York Seelster gets worse every time. Play against for as long as he races as a 2yo.

Race 6

Request For Parole. Good trip, raced good, finished well, but still has trouble closing the deal. Always around, but a solid play against for the win almost every time.

Race 8

Impressive mile by Red Pine. I'd keep my eye on him. He paced strong right through the wire.
Charlottes Colony went another good mile, but appeared to be going all he can go. Better off in a straight maiden, even better off doing that at a B track where the last quarter isn't as fast. Still has winning form written all over him with his great gate speed and willingness to sit a trip.

Race 9

Sports Lightning gets really steppy when you take hold and he gets doubled up. That will cost him one of these times. He is very rammy. Play against next time.
Thunderstruck was a for sure winner when he ran. Looked to me to be an issue with his left front. Probably a foot issue or splint. If he is back in to go within two weeks and scores out okay in the post parade, he is a big time play.

Race 10

Rebeka Bayama simply has no pace anymore. Even on a drop, she is still a play against. If this was February, they would be breeding her at this point.
Lights Go Out looked sounder, but had little to offer. Can't see her doing much with these going forward. Will have to see how she looks when she goes down a couple of levels.

Race 11

Halton Hurricane, left hard and was live most of the way, very tight quarters in the stretch, fast closing when free. Like to see what he can do next time with a clear lane.
Twin B Scandal might have got the luckiest trip I have seen in ages to win that. That usually evens out. I will play against him next time if he is a short price.
Big O Jet Airliner, bearing in bad in the turns and not very manageable. Almost ran several times on the last turn. Headpole wont fix that, no matter how stiff the burr is. Play against back in a maiden at the B's, which is his likely next stop.

Race 12

Second good effort in a row from Windsun Kenda. Ducked inside late with lots of pace after leaving hard and sitting. One to consider next time if spotted right.
Zeron moved River Rising into the outer flow down the backside, but gapped cover and let Randy out, and then stopped driving her altogether mid lane when he realized she was totally empty. Likely will scope sick and I would expect a big bounce back at a big price. 
Barefoot Beauty raced good again, but was outpaced a 2nd time. That would concern me. She doesn't have the killer instinct. 
Wildcat Beauty looks pretty lame, but she is one tough mare to keep going to the wire off very tough trips. That party will end at some point. You can only rely on toughness for so long.

 Thursday, August 14

                               Race 5

Boli. Another good effort. He is coming along. Still not being all out driven. Like to see what he can do once he is steady on his feet and Zeron has more confidence in him.

Race 9

Rustys Overload. Huge late close. He was lost in the wake of the impressiveness of Mitt Jagger, but his move was also uber impressive. In spite of suspect cover and running into and over the one in front of him in the stretch, he gathered himself and shot up for 3rd. He is green, but there is something there.

Race 10

Muscle Matters bearing in bad in the lane,  and then hung late. Sign of serious soreness. Good play against next time.
Can't fault Maxi Muscle. He came to play. But he also got a soft half, a bunch of non triers behind him and a host or runners off the gate. And a false favorite who is borderline lame and sore. He is likely overbet next time, but not neccesarily not live either.

Tuesday, August 12

Race 2

Wings of Ballykeel, pinned in the entire stretch. solid play next time if odds are there.

Race 3
Chelseas Chance. Good comeback effort, but clearly short and raced accordingly.

Race 4
Evil Dun Champion. left hard for the pocket, got trapped in when that one stopped, escaped and then came on for a solid 3rd. Good play next time if he draws okay.

Race 6
Dream Act. Horrific trip, shuffle to last, following a lot of dead cover, swung wide and solid close for 3rd.

Race 8
Surprise Hanover under extreme heavy urging from the time he pulled the 3 hole to the wire. He is a non trier and likely will go backwards from this point.

Race  9
Thats My Opinion, raced tough, but clearly he just isnt as good as first thought. He will burn serious chalk money until the rest of the public figure that out.
IdealBeach Hanover is much like the one above, only that he keeps hanging around this class. No pace in the lane, and being held together. Pass on him as he goes forward.
Junior Pride had a tough trip, and with these types, he needs a soft one. He can likely get that going forward at a price. He wont work for it.

Race 10
Carefulwhatyouwish. see notes.
K D Bella, couldn't keep the hole closed. Not a  stakes filly.

Race 11
Hollywood Drama, huge trip to be 2nd best. Cant fault her. Any other night, and many other divisions she is an easy winner.

Race 12
Opening Line. Great play against at any track. Terrible gaited horse who can't even get around WEG, let alone any smaller track.
Hall Bro. Solid effort. Left hard,  retook, let the favorite go, got out late and then was coming on good but ran out of racetrack. Almost like he wanted to be 2nd  this time but not win..yet.

 Monday, August 11

Race 1

Elegant Serenity. Like what I saw from her this time. She was much sounder than the week before, and trotted her own last quarter in 27.1, albeit no threat to the winner who was long gone on her. At some point, she will pass her on the ability cycle.

Race 4

Have to be very impressed with Machin Marley. Left well for position. Sat in like an experienced racehorse and then moved again to be 2nd best  to a filly who is far ahead of her on the racing experience ladder. 

Race 5

Strong Hope. Gapped cover most of the way, bearing in quite a bit in the lane and looked steppy coming to the line. Likely false favorite next time.
Race 6

Terrorcam is one to keep an eye on for when she gets her act together and is classified properly. Speed looks to be there.

Race 8

Southwind Luna didn't look good at all in the post parade and going to the gate. But raced great. Likely very short price next time and a solid play against if there are viable horses in that race to use.
Twin B 6, shied a bit at the gate when the spray from the car came at her, then had no racing flow until the stretch when she made solid gains. Not ready to jump on her bandwagon yet, but she bears watching to see what she can do with a fair shot.

Race 11

Little Miss Artist is putting in ugly steps and based on her last two racelines will be heavily bet next time. Excellent play against.

Race 12
An Angel Shes Not, on a line terrible into the first turn.
Stelllla, terrible dead cover and in the outer flow into a fast back half on a horrible night. Long odds next time and she can make amends. She closed well enough considering.

 Saturday, August 9

                             Race 1

Yucatan. Solid effort to get up for 2nd. He is coming around and heading for a win.
Si Semalu, locked on the right line. Even back in a claimer, he is going to get beat bad next time.

Race 2

Minestre Hanover, bad claim, looked very sore in the post parade and looked bad coming out of the hole to race very flat.
Larrys Mist is done, even on a sharp drop, he is a play against.

Race 3

Daylon Magician looked like his old self from the get go and was driven like he was the best, which he was.
Fearless Man is not anywhere near a Preferred trotter at this point and needs to drop several classes to be competitive.

Race 6

Secrets of The Knight looks really lame in the post parade.

Race 7

Pocket Trip and Chivaree Hanover are both hurting pretty bad and it shows in the stretch.

See The Wind, monster close off a back of the bus trip. Tab as big play next time is spotted right.
Northern Bullet is an ill mannered rat. At any track on the drop he is a play against.

Race 8

Regal Hope looks lame in the post parade.

Race 9

Captive Audience continues to be locked on a line. He's been that way for weeks.

Sunshine Beach looks lame on his left front.

Race 10

Rocky Boy would be better on the front end rolling all the way. good first effort on this circuit. 

Race 12

Intrigued Intended was running badly due to some issue and likely will fail back at the B's at a short price.
Hope For Badlands looks good but just can't finish. He has hit the wall. Maybe he will come back to the sharp form he showed when he first surfaced. Have to watch for some signs of that. His siblings are very similar to him in that respect.

Friday, August 8

 Race 1

 Race  2

Moonlit Dance has the type of gait that will give her trouble as she goes forward. She is also very fast and long strided. When she hits nw2, she will start to burn serious chalk money.

 Race  3,4,5,6,7

 Race 8

Demand An Answer is extremely green, but he is very fast and will be a good one. Wont be long until he puts it all together.

 Race 9
 Race 10

Pilgrims Joy still bearing in quite a bit. that will cost him again as it did his first start.

Race 11
Race 12

Wanna Rock N Roll simply cant finish.

Thursday, August 7

Race 1

Mr Lover, very nice horse, he is going to move up the ladder quickly as he learns to be a racehorse.

Race 2

Monopoly Blue Chip definitely a horse that will improve with more racing.

Race 3

Double Decker is still a bit green. He continues to improve but has not learned how to be a racehorse yet and fight for the win. He will. He has all the tools when he figures that out.

Race 4

Race 5

Sports Lightning just bearing in a bit in the stretch. If they fix him up, he will jog next time. 

Race 6

So Not Cool got jammed up at the rail and that threw him  off stride. Not his fault. He was live.
Race 7

 Race 8

Like what I saw from Eagle Molly. They weren't a tough bunch, but she stepped up in the lane when she had the chance. She can make the part of future tickets in this class, but I still wouldn't touch her if she is the favorite and will be driven like a favorite. She isn't the bravest filly.

Ramblin Rose is lame and bearing in bad.
Race 9

ASAP Hanover was not as impressive as I thought he would be. He looked steppy and being held together a bit by Tetrick. Insane speed is there, but he is likely to run if under pressure and driven hard. I don't think he will measure up to the Metro type colts.

Utah Beach is still very green and rank and Hudon is still teaching him to follow, which he doesn't want to do.

Weapons Dealer looked pretty bad in the pocket. Would certainly bet against him at the B's, which is likely his next stop.
Race 10

Float On By,  running in bad in the turns and likely wont get a 5/8ths or half mile, and in traffic will have trouble even at WEG. Which means drivers wont sit a trip with her and be parked out more than is advisable. 
Race 11

Vital Sign, pretty ugly going pacer. wouldn't rely on him to double up.

World Peace on the right line pretty bad, likely to get worse. he was in a claimer for a reason.

Tuesday, August 5

Race 1,2,3


Race 4

Piece Of the Rock had nowhere to go and no room the whole stretch, and much of the way before that. Was weaving and stopping and changing course many times. He can do better if he draws better next time and gets away closer.

Race 5

Frankie Boy is a true green maiden. He has speed, but still is a bit choppy gaited when you take hold of him. He can keep up, but tries to run over horses if he doesn't get his way. He looks to want to go forward, then JJ pulls the plugs and he runs right away. Keep an eye on him for some improvement.

RightInTheKisser got screwed by the pace and the trip. Credible 3rd place considering that. Still high on him going forward.
Charlottes Colony made a great pre race appearance and looks to have some serious go. He left enough but had to take a seat, then shuffled a bit, and finally was sitting behind Jody when his horse ran, and still finished strong with lots of pace.

Race 6

Boli seems to be a lot of horse, but really can't do much with his talent at this point. His rally at the end suggests he will. Keep a watch on him.

Up The Alley, while 2nd, was held together the whole way by Condren, who milked 2nd money out of him. I view him as a play against going forward until he shows he can be driven with confidence. Even under that tight hold, he was drifting out bad and Condren didn't try to straighten him out, which suggest he would have run again if he tried to do that.

Race 7


Race 8

Murmur Hanover seems to have reached peak form, but he is clearly not the same horse he was at 2 and probably should seek much softer company at the B tracks. Even a drop in class at WEG is not likely to put him in the winners circle until  the winter when they are much softer overall and slow down a couple of seconds.

Saw some signs of life from Burnin Money. If classified right next time, he is worth a look at a decent price. He seems now willing to follow a helmet and close at the right time. 

Race 9

York Seelster obviously has speed and talent. And he tries hard to win when he finishes strong. But he puts in ugly steps, almost lame steps most of the way down the backside. Second time I've seen him do that. I would beware of him at a likely short price next time. He might be a better 3yo, if he is not pushed any farther at this point, but that isn't likely to happen.

Maracasso made no attempt to leave and was at the back of the bus the whole way. Had no room top of the lane and had to swing out for a clear shot. He closed a ton to only get beat 2 lengths. Can see a green horse like that moving forward next time, and likely leaving for a better position.

Race 10

Carousel Hall is definitely improving and kept up with fillies who are far ahead of her in terms of experience and performance to this point. But she was running in bad and had to be corrected in the lane when she went over a pylon and almost a second.

Lenny Mac raced good but was in too tough with the top bunch and it showed at the tote board. She can do a lot of good next time back in a Grassroots or overnight where she belongs.

 Race 11

Junior Pride was coming late,with tons of pace but was in very tight and running over horse with no room on either side. Def play next time from any post

Normstrikesfame was very excitable in the pocket and didn't want to release the chalk, then pulled and paced hard right to the wire. He is much better rolling the whole way, and is likely to retake next time if he has to let one go. He has the overall speed to compete now at WEG.

Weather Hanover couldn't keep up and its time to send him to a B track like Sarnia, possibly Georgian if spotted right to beat up on lesser. His form has tailed off sharply and some hard trips have not helped that cause.

Monday, August 4

Race 1

Southwind Champane looked great in the post parade and score down and raced just as good. full marks to her. she has a future. 
Zorjwick Philly looked great as well in the post parade but doesn't have much speed yet. that might come and she could take down a grassroots bunch at a B track if she progresses a bit.

Spirit To Win looked to be handled carefully. That would concern me if the price is very short again. But the talent and speed is there for sure.

Race 2

Osprey Impact, impressive first start at WEG. Might need one more, but she appears to fit with this bunch.

Race 3

Amora Beach. Solid 2nd to a tons the best winner. He is starting to improve a shade each week. Don't think he is stakes material, but back in overnights he can be dangerous. 

Race 4

Art of The Deal left hard for position, but found herself sitting 3rd behind a stopped on the turn, then weaved out in tight quarters and came up on two who were going the same speed. She had to be taken hold of and finished well. Tab for next time. She looks very live.

Race 5

Magic Madness was in tight quarters midstretch and couldn't really get trotting until the end.

Meadowview Vicky was running in bad in the lane. I see trouble on the horizon for her. She gapped the gate badly the race before. The tougher the competition gets, the worse she is likely to become.

Race 6

Val America. See Notes.

Race 7

Like what I saw from Queensland Beach. She is still pretty green, but she is going forward and she looks to have a big engine to go with that big frame  and gait.
Race 8

A Filly Affair obviously likes to go all the way on the engine and didn't like being see sawed to give it up,and then jammed right onto McNair's helmet and checked when she was going to run over him. Back into overnights, expect to see her on the engine again. Don't know if she can go all the way with better, but she will race much better.

Race 9


Race 10

Porsche Seelster. See Notes.

Race 11
Race 12

Ransom Demand lost about 5 lengths in the backfield when he had to be checked hard behind a horse that made a dirty break and almost went down. Just another excuse for him, but he keeps showing up on the board. He is slow developing, but so was his brother and now he is a FFA'ller.

Saturday, August 2

Race 1

Coe Leader looks great on the track, raced good but was putting in iffy steps most of the way.

Little Red Chev didn't give it up too bad considering how long it took her to clear to the top.

Race 2

Melmerby Beach. still bearing in and on a line. He will fail as soon as he meets even competition and he has to be taken hold of.

Race 3

solid mile by Burning Shore who got jammed up a bit on the turn and then split horses to come on late and be 2nd best to a big class dropper.

Race 4

Once again I am not at all impressed with Prarie Illusion. She will continue to burn chalk money. She has no zip or fire in the stretch. Unless she changes trainers and whatever talent she has can be maximized, she is no better than a mediocre 8 claimer on this circuit.

Race 5

Race 6

Very slow back half and last quarter, and Boogie Woogie looked like he was all out and couldn't go anymore. His back class will continue to make him overbet and he will continue to burn money. Big play against next time. He obviously needs the long gaps in racing for a reason.

Race 7

Apprentice Hanover..see notes.

Race 8

Race 9

Machal Jordan..see notes

Race 10

Whiskey Tax was bearing in horrible into the first turn, to the point he almost went over some pylons and didn't look much better the rest of the way.

Race 11

Terrible drive by McNair on Sing For Me George.He should have either parked Fillion or retook on the turn before he got locked in. Drove him right off the board. 

Race 12

Marlee B, terrible dead cover or she jogs.
Hustleonhome, crawling over horses most of the way then lacked racing room for too long. Another iffy drive. Hope they put someone else on her.

Friday, August 1

Race 1 to 6

Race 7

Noble Jilly. Big late close. She seems to be much better in terms of the lameness and running in bad on the turns.

Race 8


Race 9

Lights Go Out. A bit flat in the lane this time.I think the hard miles are starting to wear her down.
Mach A Wish got screwed by the pace and trip. She can rebound next time.
Race 10

Race 11

OK Godiva got interfered with in the lane when following a horse that was very rough and looked like she could spill a field. Not sure how much pace she had anyway, but she lost all chance when that happened. She also had a lot of road trouble along the way.