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The Conscience of Thoroughbred Racing


By James Witherite, Meadowlands Handicapper Early Double Analysis FRIDAY, September 8

1             HEART OF LOVE N            She was outmatched in early-season Kindergarten divisions whereas others in this field fared better. Pole keeps her close off the shelf; variables abound.

2             SECRET GARDEN               She improved in a mild flow on the far turn and rolled wide in upper stretch for a no-match third. Similar spot is aided by a much kinder draw. Can share.

3             RUFFIAN              Her :27 last quarter was the fastest on the page in this race last week, and her rally evoked shades of her Excelsior win at Vernon. Minor player with similar.

4             GIBSON GIRL      Yes, she upset at 48-1 from off the pace on debut, but a markedly tougher field awaits on arrival. In terms of raw speed, she needs 3 more seconds for these.

5             FACE THE Z TAM               Solid effort from this gal on arrival from Lex! She did the heaviest lifting through most of the mile before Caviart Davia emerged. Should be sharper.

6             SARASOTA HANOVER      That :26.4 quarter to clear from post 7 stung her last out, and then she tired in chase of Caviart Belle, who then won the Eternal Camnation. Easier await.

7             TREACHEROUSDAME      Strong front-end efforts at Philly are a plus, to be sure, but she leveled off late after only mustering mild uncovered gains on arrival. Post hinders further.

8             ANNELIESE HANOVER     Yonkers invader beat N4L types five back and since chased for second on two occasions. Staying power suits; wide draw negates some of the class relief.

Top Contenders: 5-6-2-3

Driver Choices: Andy McCarthy #1 over #4

Race 2

1             DEVASTATE          After angling off the far turn for a commanding qualifying win at Pocono on Aug. 16, he broke amid a similar rally locally. Watch and assess on debut.

2             WALL STREET EDGE         Two back, he sustained a first-over push before fading; more recently, he couldn’t fend off pressure after stealing a 1:00 half. Will need more on arrival.

3             SMART SCHOONER          PASS prelim winner showed versatility in July scores, but breaking issues cropped up since. Will the switch to two turns smooth him out? Judge value.

4             CHEZACTIC          In last week’s Q, he was a no-match second to the ultra-impressive filly Instagram Model after flat outings this summer. Signs of improvement?

5             EDVARD PALEMA S          Love his Pocono lines! First, he blasted for the pocket for second behind Mr NJC elim winner Mr Grant; then he was a two-move winner from the 8-hole.

6             PRETTY DAME SPEEDY    Exertion for early position took all the sting out of him last week, and lat regression’s been too much of a trend lately. Somewhat taller task awaits.

7             LIFE ON THE BLUF            He rallied steadily from the back of the pack to win his debut at odds-on. There’s a lot to like from that outing; strong closing speed really encourages.

Top Contenders: 5-3-7-4

DRIVER CHOICES: Tim Tetrick: #3 over #7

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