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The Conscience of Thoroughbred Racing

BIG M EARLY DD – FRIDAY

By Meadowlands Handicapper James Witherite, Friday, February 9, Early Double Analysis —

Race 1

1            SHORE OF HIMSELF  Yogi’s choice hasn’t hit the board in four 2024 starts, but stayed on enough for minors 3, 4 and 5 back.

2            ROCKABILLY CHARM   Rallied to win two back; faded late after a bid in the Way To Close race. Should be handier tonight.

3            UNCLE COZ    Complete non-factor from astern on arrival. Easier competition awaits, but he’s hit a real cold snap.

4            ALL ABOUT RUSTY     Weakened late last week in what was his first start in six weeks. Expect sharper; gains Beltrami.

5            TAKEITTOTHEFACE     Worked into a mid-stretch lead two back, then was outmatched last out. Past lines prove closing kick.

6            VEL LARRY       Empty from astern last out; passed tired rivals at boxcars the start prior. He’ll need to find a way in.

7            LINCOLN BOULEVARD     Gains Lee amid a stretch of decent efforts. This group shapes up as easier than recent competition.

8            CLOUDBREAK     Empty in two tries since dropping to the absolute bottom local level. Wait for him to turn around.

9            FURIOUS BEACH    Pocket trips yielded close finishes at Monti. Here, he’ll have to overcome the draw and just tougher.

10          MY WISH CAME TRUE    Chased OK to save fourth last week. Gains Slendorn; holds the raw speed edge from last week.

Top Contenders: 5-7-2-10

Driver Choices: Yogi Sheridan: #1 over #10

Race 2

1            GUEST OF HONOR    Second-time starter kept on well from the pocket on debut. Another inside draw keeps him handy.

2            BINGO BRAIN Stalked and lifted mildly out of traffic to hit the board on arrival. Gains Dex; can build off that line.

3            TOUCHPOINT               Stayed even for deep minors at big odds in his last two, but lacked pop to threaten the likes of #7.

4            BRIGHT EXPECTATION            After riding cover into striking range last week, he stayed even late. Post relief gets him a little closer.

5            WAVERLY HANOVER Yonkers invader figures to improve on the switch to 2 turns, but lackluster finishes of late give pause.

6            STRIKING TACTFUL    Pressed decently on the far turn last week, but lacked late. Kinder cover trips have yielded minors.

7            KOVU AS           Odds-on winner from off cover here on 1/12 nearly lasted across the river last out. Versatility a plus.

8            IMPORTER EXPORTER             Traffic trouble took him out of range last week, but he stayed even. Can share with clearer road.

9            LOVELY HEART             Rode the pocket to beat #7 at Yonkers last week. Should be sharper second out, but draw hinders.

Top Contenders: 7-2-8-9

Driver Choices: Brett Beckwith: #7 over #2 | Braxten Boyd: #5 over #6

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