Edison Hatter — Twitter: @Edison_1999_
Most Likely Winner: Race 1- (3) DANCING DESTINY
Race 1: (3) DANCING DESTINY is coming off of two impressive wins since coming back from a layoff. Coming from the barn of top conditioner Kevin Patterson, this mare absolutely towers over this field. If she puts in as strong of an effort as she has in the past two, she will absolutely crush this field. Even a less than perfect effort should still get the job done here with ease. (6) MARY’S LISTED NEXT is also in solid form at the moment, winning last time out after posting back-to-back third place finishes. She faces slightly tougher today, but still seems best of the rest. (7) ONE ODD STORY could be an interesting price to add in exotic plays. She scored a nice win last time out with top jockey Arnaldo Bocachica aboard for the first time. With Arnaldo riding back here, watch out for this one.
Race 2: (3) CHESTNUT LIME figures to be part of the early pace stretching out from 4.5 furlongs. Previously, he has not done well at this distance, but previous tries have been against tougher company. Hopefully this softer field, combined with the overall lack of other early pace will set the race up nicely for him to steal on the front end. (6) WISH IN THE CASTLE is making a significant drop in class, but he has shown very little for the new connections in the last two starts. While the class drop should help today and may wake him up, it just doesn’t seem that he’s in the best form right now. (2) FIBERTOWN is best of the rest and also figures to be forwardly placed early on.
Race 3: (5) HALF EMPTY was completely empty late last time out at Laurel at the 8.5 furlong distance. The turn back to 6.5 furlongs again plus the class relief in taking on a softer field today should help this one tremendously. An effort similar to his debut at Laurel should put him right in the mix tonight. (1) CRIMSON RIDE comes in from Mahoning Valley off two sharp races. She should part of the early pace scenario and has every chance to take another step forward here. (2) USED TO BE FUN also makes her Charles Town debut tonight. She makes her first start for Jeff Runco, who is hitting at 25% in similar spots. Top jockey Arnaldo Bocachica is aboard, who had his choice of riding a few in here.
Race 4: (3) EPIC WEST has been improving significantly each time in his three most recent starts at Charles Town. A repeat of his most recent race would probably be sufficient enough to get it done against this field. Should get a good rail trip as he is speedier than the two drawn to his inside. (1) WILLIE THE WHALE has sneakily been putting in some good races at a bit of a price at the level and distance in the past few starts. Expect this one to be right in the mix again tonight. (7) FRANKEE MERCH holds a class and speed figure edge over the field having tried some tough fields at Laurel recently. However, he just doesn’t have the speed to go with the leaders early, so he will be forced to come from off the pace, sometimes a tough thing to do at this 4.5 furlong distance.
Race 5: (1) JEFFERSON COUNTY only shows one so-so published work in preparation for the debut, but she starts for a trainer who is hitting at 25% with first-time starters and 50% with first-time starters in the claiming ranks, albeit on small sample sizes. Keep an eye on the tote board to see what the public thinks of this rare 5-year-old first-timer. (7) CLASSY SMITTY appears best of the experienced horses, putting up the best speed figures in recent outings and dropping today back into the claiming ranks. However, he has shown little in his career since a second-place finish on debut, which was also against maiden claimers. (8) ONE TWO PUNCH showed no punch on debut last time out, but does come from a well-respected barn and should be ready to take a step forward in his second career start.
Race 6: (2) WASJUANNOWPAUL has enjoyed two nice outings since coming to Charles Town, finishing third two back and picking up a win last time out. The win last time was visually super impressive as the horse was second-last early by some 10 lengths or more and rolled from the back to win going away. He stretches out to 8.5 furlongs for the first time in his career and if he takes to the distance and doesn’t have any traffic trouble, expect this one to roll home again. (10) MARYLANDER has a lot going for him- he comes from the Anthony Farrior barn, gets the services of Arnaldo Bocachica in his Charles Town debut, and comes out of tougher races at Laurel. His top connections and class edge make this one a key contender. (3) KATMAN QUICK showed speed stretching out last time and showed some serious grit to dig in and hold on for second last time.
Race 7: (1) ADDING MACHINE showed speed last time out and yielded the lead in the stretch, but was second-best. With the rail draw today, he should be showing speed again and will hold inside position into the turn. He can take another step forward here in his third start off the layoff. (8) MISSIONSNINETYNINE is coming off a convincing maiden win last time out in which he wired the field and absolutely romped home 5.5 lengths clear of the rest. He takes on winners for the first time here and will have to contend with ADDING MACHINE for the early lead this time, but he definitely is in with a serious chance. (4) DERBY DAY DREAMS was wide last time while finishing just behind ADDING MACHINE. Expect him to be within range of the leaders early and pick up the pieces late.
Race 8: (6) BUSINESS CLASS is an 0-for-10 maiden who made her Charles Town debut last time out after racing at Woodbine in Canada in all her other career starts. She finished an average fourth last time out, but that doesn’t tell the full story. The slow pace up front significantly benefited the early pacesetters, but BUSINESS CLASS is a fairly deep closer that comes from well off the pace. A better tempo up front early today should give this one a real chance. (9) TAR HEEL PALACE only has one other lifetime start at the distance and she showed good early speed stretching out that day and held on to finish a game second. (2) CARROT CAKE has some interesting back class that could make this one a contender with a better effort than his most recent outings since the claim.