Only one night of racing this week at the Meadowlands, as jumpers take the spotlight in New Jersey at Far Hills. The rails stay out at 17 feet, meaning that fields will be capped at ten runners per pace. There’s a real chance that Paco Lopez could be on the post time favorite in all six races this evening. Each mount has a live look as he tries to sweep the card tonight.
|1||1||DBL, PK3, PK6|
|2||1,6,8||DBL, PK3, PK5|
|3||3,7||1,6||DBL, PK3, PK4|
Race 1: Top Pick: 1
New Jersey bred maiden special weight fillies and mares start the night in East Rutherford. Big Lee’s Legacy (1) is the heavy favorite on the morning line and will be very tough to beat in this spot. She ran two solid races since moving from the dirt to the turf. This field is much softer than the field that she faced last month down state at Monmouth. Paco Lopez retaining the mount is a plus. She feels like a worthy single to start the Jersey-6 wager.
Race 2: Top Pick: 6
Paco Lopez has the upper hand in this $30K-$25K N2L turf sprint, He gets the call on Military Drill (6) who drops back to this level after a dull effort with a loaded N1X allowance field at the end of the Monmouth meet. He broke his maiden three back with $30K-$25K maiden claimers and he came back to be a close second at this level two starts ago. He should sit the perfect trip, just off the early speed here. Jama Dillon (1) could be closing well late in this race if he can repeat his performance with $16K-$14K N2L claimers last out. He struggled at this level two back, but he was roughed up a bit at the start that day. Patriarch Artie (8) looked good sprinting on the turf at Monmouth for the first time last out. He looks to have the best shot of the speed horses in this contest, and the cutback to 5 Furlongs may pay dividends, especially if he can clear early.
Race 3: Top Pick: 3
The Fire Within (3) moves up n class after a solid turf debut last out at Delaware with $16K maiden claimers. He nearly took the field gate to wore that day, while showing marked improvement when running on grass. Brian’s Mission (7) ships and drops after running even efforts in a pair of New York bred maiden special weight turf sprints at Saratoga. He’s bred to better at longer distances, so this seems like a good spot to make that transition. Jomar Torres is a solid turf rider, despite being winless thus far at this meet. Reiner (1) comes back to the turf after running a dull race in a $40K maiden claiming race that was taken off the turf at Saratoga. He was very sharp three back at this level at Monmouth. Voter Protection (6) comes in for Chad Brown and gets Paco Lopez to ride, which should all but assure favoritism for this gelded son of More Than Ready. I’ll cover with him based on the connections, but he doesn’t feel like he’s made any progress as a three year old.
Race 4: Top Pick: 8
The last Pick-3 of the night starts with a $25K-$20K N4L claiming race. Strong Gem (8) may be a value play dropping back to a more appropriate level for her. She was solid three back, finishing second with $16K-$14K N4L claimers, which was a salty condition at Monmouth this summer. She faced N1X allowance foes and starter allowance foes in her last two tries, so the class relief will be welcome here. She may get a decent pace to close into here. Act Like Artie (4) ran a credible race in the same starter allowance race that Strong Gem is coming out of. Kelly Breen has done well with the few horses he’s started at this meet so far. Kitten With a Whip (9) definitely has a class edge on many of these. She’s struggled in her last two, but prior to that, she was running races that would put her right there at this level. There should be enough speed to set up a late rally for her.
Race 5: Top Pick: 4
The feature race today is a starter allowance for horses that have started for an $8K tag or less since 2020. Kitten Street (4) has been very good in his last four turf starts. He is going to be on or near the lead in this race where there isn’t a ton of other speed horses. Jorge Panaijo has started the meet with three wins after finishing the Monmouth meet strong. Trilogy (5) is the main danger, as Paco Lopez is on yet another live mount. He came up just short at this level last out at Parx and is in the best form of his career thus far.
Race 6: Top Pick: 9
Mike Dini sends out Summer Boss to make his debut with $40K-$30K maiden claimers. He’s been working well in the AM for a barn that does well with first time starters in maiden claiming races. Dini has also had success with progeny of Summer Front. Tapaterm (1) showed speed here in maiden special weight company in his debut here last weekend. He runs back a week later while cutting back to a sprint and running for a tag. He’ll likely need to clear from his rail draw. On His Toes (3) debuts for Colts Neck Stables and Jorge Duarte who teamed up for a monster meet at Monmouth this summer. This will be their first start of this meet. His dirt works aren’t great, but his pedigree, especially on the dam side, favors turf.