by Al Cimaglia
June 6, 2021
Hawthorne Racecourse has a 14-race card slated with features involving 3-year-old Illinois bred trotters. The 0.50 Late Pick 4 starts in Race 11. The sequence has a $25,000 guaranteed pool, and it will be my focus.
Comments and selections below are based on a fast track.
2-Ryans Ambassador (7/5)-Program chalk is only 1-20 at Haw and 4 for 38 lifetime so the 7/5 price isn't a bargain but does fit well with this crew. Drops to a better level and Wilfong should have the 4-year-old in striking range at the top of lane.
6-Final Prize (4-1)-Gets class and post relief plus a positive driver change. So, there's a lot to like and this 4-year-old should be in the hunt. Ridge Warren could work a stalking trip to capture the 2nd win in 8 tries in Stickney.
1-Mayor Virgin (9/5)-Winner of 2 straight steps-up but is in a spot to race near the top of the stack and that has worked in previous starts. This barn has done well over the last month and Leonard should give the 3-year-old a chance to win again.
2-Fox Valley Sampson (3-1)-This is a risky play, has broken stride in 6 of the last 9 starts. Does have 1 win in 2 Haw races and has the speed to be a player if minds its manners.
7-Everychanceitake (9/2)-Draws post 7 for the 2nd consecutive time and didn't have the easiest of trips last week but almost caught #1. If Husted can work a more efficient journey this 3-year-old should offer a square price.
4-Mr No Fear (3-1)-Not loving the 3-1 price on a horse that doesn't pass anyone down the lane. But draws well, and gets a ++ driver's change. Wilfong could make a difference and help this 3-year-old break his maiden.
5-Born Desire (5-1)-Three-year-old 1st time starter had a nice qualifier at Haw on 5-29. Took the lead and didn't look back and paced the back half in 58.3. Could win right out of the box and should offer a solid price.
9-Fox Valley Lynyrd (8-1)-This is a 4-year-old making its debut and had a good qualifier on 5-22. Raced in 156.3 and came the back half in 55.2. Not sure the wrapper will come off from post 9 but best to respect. Kept rolling in the qualifier and went by others down the lane.
3-Countercurrency (9/5)-Comes off 2 sharp efforts and now Wilfong steers which shouldn't hurt chances. Closed in a sizzling 26.3 to cash a 2nd place check and will look for another strong effort with a better pilot in the bike.
5-Sweet But Psycho (7/2)-Left quickly in the last 2 starts to get the lead. That worked against easier and not at this class. Best chance tonight might be to enjoy a cozy pocket ride behind the morning line choice and then take a swing down the lane.
Race 11) 2,6
Race 12) 1,2,7
Race 13) 4,5,9
Race 14) 3,5
Total Ticket Cost) $18 for $0.50
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