by Al Cimaglia
June 8, 2021
Northfield Park will start the week with a 15-Race card. The $1.00 Late Pick 4 begins in Race 11. The sequence has a $10,000 guaranteed pool, and it will be my focus.
Comments and selections below are based on a fast track.
3-Jk Parlay (3/1)-Makes the 2nd start off the bench and was cashing checks versus $15k claimers in February before being put away. Doesn't have great gate speed but should find a good seat, maybe in the pocket behind #4.
4-Cougar Bait (2-1)-Wired the $6k claimers on 6-1 and went off at 6/5. Getting on the engine seems like a likelihood and Wrenn may look to follow the same script tonight.
6-Bourbans Best (9/2)-Finished behind #4 in last and had the same post. Merriman is back and is making the 3rd start for the Rhoades Barn. Took the long way around last week, if the fractions are honest and the trip is more efficient it could lead to the 5th picture in 21 tries this year.
4-Clairmont (7-1)-Defeated the $7k claimers on 5-11 and then faced tougher in the last 3 starts. This is a better level for success. Lake could get aggressive from this post and be in striking range at a solid price.
5-In Commando (5/2)-Claimed last week by the Rhoades barn and goes from a 2nd tier starting spot to a prime post draw. This 12-year-old has 6 wins in 20 starts this year and drops in for the same $8k tag as last time. Merriman steers and he is familiar with this veteran who could be sitting on a big try.
2-Doowrah Boy (3-1)-This colt has hit the board in 6 of 10 lifetime and has won 3 of 6 at NFLD. Had no chance in last after a soft half and has taken the long way around racing wide in the last 2 starts. Best chance for success from this post would be to leave and the get the top or settle in the pocket behind #5. Should be a player if Grismore can provide a good steer.
5-Express All That (4-1)-Leaves from a coveted post, Merriman steers and takes a meaningful drop but is only 1-15 lifetime. The overall record might be cause for pause but probably best to not overlook. Could be a better horse on the 1/2 mile track here than on the 5/8's at the Meadows. Has made 2 starts at NFLD notching a win and a 2nd place finish.
4-Vague Traces (4-1)-Nine-year-old has only 3 wins in 31 races the last 2 years but drops to a spot to shine. Seems to do his best work racing near the top of the stack and has the gate speed to be forwardly placed. Should be in the hunt with an alert start.
5-Isowantapetrock (2-1)-Merriman steered last week and has the lines again. He was aggressive leaving from post 7 and did get the top but was parked past the quarter pole. That trip took its toll, faded down the lane to finish a close 3rd but could avenge that loss this time. The trip should be smoother with this post draw and will likely land on the point or in the 2 hole.
$1 Late Pick 4
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