Picks and Ponderings: Hawthorne Carryover Sequences

Today at Hawthorne, there’s a carryover into both the early Pick 4 as well as the Pick 5, thanks to a 60/1 stunner by Meadowlee’s Afleet in yesterday’s second race.

Over at Picks and Ponderings, I take a look at the sequence.  I have it in A/B/C/X format, discussing the horses with strong chances, lesser chances, and no chances through the sequence.

With the carryovers, and with neither being a jackpot pool, it’s worth taking your shot this afternoon.  First post is at 4:10…so there’s plenty of time to come down from the action in Dubai, read my preview, and play your ticket!

Picks and Ponderings: Scenes from Spring at Hawthorne

I love Hawthorne.

I can’t believe we’re three weeks into the meet already.  I’ve been out there every race day so far, and it has been so nice to be back home.  Seeing all the horses who make my home circuit what I love has been such a treat.

Head over to Picks and Ponderings, take a look at my photo gallery from the first three weeks at Hawthorne, and let me know your thoughts (or Hawthorne memories!) in the comments.

Picks and Ponderings: Friday’s Double-Carryover Pick 5 at Hawthorne

This Friday’s card at Hawthorne has been drawn.  All eyes will be on the first five races: no one hit the Pick 5 on either of the first two days of the meet, so there’s a two-day carryover of over $30,000.  Over at Picks and Ponderings, I take a look at the sequence.

Hawthorne made it a tough sequence: three maiden races, laden with lightly-raced horses, and a pair of salty and competitive claimers.  There are live price horses through the sequence, and anyone who hits should be nicely rewarded.

Head over to Picks and Ponderings, read my preview of Friday’s Pick 5 sequence, and good luck when you play!

Hawthorne selections and analysis: 3.4.17

Live racing is back underway at Hawthorne!

Today’s card features nine races — all dirt sprints.  Routes should pop up over the next week or two; if the weather stays as warm as it’s been, turf races should show up by the end of the month.

One of the biggest questions, and a thread that runs through the analysis of several races today, is how the track plays.  On opening day, the rail was radioactive, and outside closing trips brought an advantage.  They had the blade out by the rail today, so perhaps the rail will be a bit less tiring today.  My selections are a bit more slanted to outside, but should inside speed trips start winning, I’ll make sure to note that on Twitter.

Without further ado, let’s dive into the card!

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an old friend, still with me

On March 26, 2014, I was a horse racing neophyte.  Having followed the sport closely for less than a year by that point, I had far more enthusiasm than knowledge or sense.  (One could say that is still the case, though hopefully the gap has narrowed over the last few years.)

That enthusiasm led me to volunteer to do Jim Vs. — once a week, a fan would go on the pre-race show with Jim Miller, discuss their picks, and have a friendly little handicapping competition.  I knew I had jumped in over my head, but I’ve always liked public speaking…so I could do my homework, deliver my picks with confidence, and hope for the best.

The opener proved the perfect metaphor for the day:  Jim beat me as soundly as Divine Delivery beat Sgt. Green in the day’s first race.  In that race, a $17,500 maiden claimer, he sided with 4/5 favourite Divine Delivery.  I took my shot with second betting choice Sgt. Green…who finished second, beaten 18 1/2 lengths.  That’s how most of my day went: I kept looking for cute ways to beat the chalk, and I kept falling short.

In one race, however, I took an “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em” attitude toward the favourite.

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more twilight racing!

Yesterday, Hawthorne posted on their Facebook page that post times will be a bit later than usual through March of this year: 4:10pm first post.

I can’t wait!

Part of it is personal, of course.  I love evening racing, racing under the lights.  Perhaps that’s because my first time visiting Hawthorne was a night card (that sloppy, marshy Hawthorne Derby day in 2013!).  Maybe it’s because I, unlike so many horse lovers, have always been a night owl.  Evening racing fits how I am wired.

But, it’s more than personal.  It’s an attempt to fill a slower spot in horse racing’s daily schedule.

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Picks and Ponderings: Monday Hawthorne picks and analysis

Hawthorne is hosting live racing on Monday, December 26.  Over at Picks and Ponderings, I delve into the card.

If you like maiden races, you get three of them on Monday.  There are also some salty claimers, and an Illinois-bred filly and mare allowance to anchor the card.  Play the races no matter where you are — and if you’re looking to enjoy an unseasonably warm day out with the horses, come out to the track!

Head over to Picks and Ponderings, read my preview of Monday’s action at Hawthorne, and let me know what you think in the comments!