The Meadowlands has a competitive 13-race card to wrap up the weekend of harness action. The 0.50 Early Pick 4 starts in Race 6. The sequence has a $50,000 guaranteed pool with a 15% takeout, and it will be my focus.
Comments and selections below are based on a fast track.
Race 6 (8:25PM ET)
1-Raptors Flight N (2-1)-After winning 3 straight the 10-year-old still drops in for a $20k tag and draws the rail, which shouldn't hurt. Can't criticize the win streak but not going to single. Should be following the same plan of racing near the top of the stack and will respect chances of the streak continuing.
7-Magritte (3-1)-Not sure what happened on 5-12, just seemed to stop but the qualifier on 5-30 at Philly was okay. Will assume everything is fine now and has the back class plus gate speed to challenge #1. The Big M record shows 4 pictures in 7 races, that's a better win % than anyone including the morning line choice who has won 10 of 30 starts here.
Race 7 (8:50PM ET)
1-Combustion (5/2)-The negatives are this will be the 1st start of the 3-year-old season and faces older. The positives are, put in 3 nice qualifiers, the last on 5-27, the usual pilot Todd McCarthy is between the pipes plus has a win and a 2nd place finish in 2 races at M1. There aren't any monsters in this field and will respect, could fire hot off the bench.
4-As Always (12-1)-Will swing for a price and this 5-year-old could be better in the 2nd race for Engblom on the drop in class. Has hit the board in 18 of 36 starts here with 5 pictures. Could land on top or in the pocket and should offer a juicy price.
Race 8 (9:15PM ET)
2-Delayed Hanover (2-1)-Usually performs well at this level and Stratton should put the 5-year-old in play. Went off as the 6/5 chalk in last and faded down the lane. Will use on this ticket but wouldn't be a win bet candidate at a small price.
3-Harry Knows IR (7/2)-Will toss last in the slop versus better, should hold his own and then some versus this field. Could land on the point and not look back.
5-Balenciaga (9/2)-Just missed wiring the field in last at Yonkers and now faces easier. Looking for MacDonald to leave and land in a close-up seat. Should be racing with the leaders and be in the mix at the wire.
Race 9 (9:40PM ET)
6-Early Action (5-1)-Raced well coming 2nd to a well-meant winner (7) in the 1st start here since 4-21 and was off 16 days between races. Will look for improvement at a square price and fade the 2 program chalks (8-9).
7-Livinthebeachlife (9/2)-Dropped and popped in last and now steps-up. This is the same level the Burke trainee finished a close 2nd in the slop on 5-20. Sears takes over for Gingras and has the gate speed to get the jump on its main foes.
0.50 Early Pick 4
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