Posted by Ken Warkentin on Wednesday, July 28, 2021 1:30 PM


2-She’s Nun Bettor N – Team Burke trainee equaled her mark of 1:51.3 here this season, just missed in two of her last three, including a 1:49.1 on June 26 & draws inside


8-Alicorn – Has been on a form spree sparked by that 1:50.4 effort on June 9, stole some soft fractions & outsprinted Major Battle last week, big threat despite post eight


7-Major Battle – She’s on a major roll, got stuffed in the three-hole & shook loose with plenty late last week, look for her to fire hard for another stalk n pop try



3-Fly Light – Fringe player in stakes action didn’t make the Hambo grade, but draws well off some beneficial experience & Ake Svanstedt can get aggressive with this one


2-Balenciaga – Winless gelding has a big chance to graduate from an inside post here, shows some solid efforts chasing the red-hot Ahundreddollarbill in NYSS


7-Avenir – Regained her confidence with a standout qualifier with trotting hopples added, then overwhelmed in a 1:52.2 stakes mile, she might be best among the Team Burke trio



4-Stars Align A – Draws better after a few weeks off from a sizzling Haughton division, pressured through blinding speed before that, now drops into an ideal spot to employ a patient stalk n pop for Team Bongiorno


8-American History – Sub 1:48 performer for his third season regained winning form at this level, yet was under some urging last week, draws outside a salty field, which makes a repeat no picnic


1-Highalator – Classy 7YO returns off a recent sick scratch & two in a row on the engine in PA, brimming with confidence he has a big chance to be forwardly placed from the rail in competitive match up



4-Catch The Fire – 1:47.3 winner @ Scioto Downs on June 26 tried to close from the clouds in his Haughton division, finally draws a decent post off that tough acclimating mile & could surprise these


2-Captain Barbossa – Took a mark of 1:47.1 in a Graduate division, got torched first over in the Roll With Joe & Graduate Final, has had three weeks off, another inside post, look for a rebound


7-Allywag Hanover – Withdrawn from the Mixed Sale & promptly reeled off a new mark of 1:47.1 with torrid fractions setting the table in his Haughton division, major threat to keep it going despite an outside assignment



2-Bella Bellini – Prolific in PA this season, winning six of nine, including a 1:52.1 mark here over Donna Soprano two starts back, moves inside fresh off a strong :26.2 rally against Hambo hopeful Johan Palema


4-Lady Chaos – Consistent Team Toscano trainee on the board in six of seven this season, a close second in her last two stakes here, post four again maintains her serious player status


8-Beltassima – Don’t forget her gallant post ten upset in the NJSS Final, nailed Lady Chaos in the Reynolds & just missed in the Del Miller for Team Alagna, major contender despite post eight



7-Dancinginthedark M – #1 Hambletonian contender with just one glitch on his record this season, fresh off the fastest trotting mile of the season with a Dancer devastation, challenging post here, but peaking at prime time


6-Sonofamistery – The switch in tactics paid off with a more sure-foot & full of trot 1:50.2 career best Dancer division, gives Team Melander a fierce 1-2 punch & The White Knight is looking for a Hambo grandslam 


5-Ambassador Hanover – Runner up in the EBC & Yonkers Trot looks like a model of consistency for Team Svandstedt, all the way & held off On A Streak in Reynolds division & poised to crank it up a notch



2-Next Level Stuff – Won back-to-back legs of this series in May, then just missed on June 12, shuffled & dodged a breaker in a horrid Hambo Maturity trip, look for a bounce back from another inside post


12-Atlanta – Classy track record holder roared like a lioness in her first two starts this season, caught out of striking range in most recent, one to beat despite post 12 


6-When Dovescry – 2019 Oaks champ won two divisions in a row, then was twice a runner up to Atlanta, a solid third to Manchego last out, speed & consistency is definitely in her corner



9-Fire Start Hanover – What a comeback from this 2020 Dan Patch Award winner, grinded gamely & just missed to Hot Mess Express in the Mistletoe Shalee, stands out despite post nine


1-Staycation Hanover – Lightly-raced Somebeachsomewhere filly came back with a sharp narrow loss in 1:50 for Team Pelling & lands the rail for a greatly anticipated follow up


2-Podium Girl – Chris Ryder trainee has come around & hit the board in her last two, the latest as a beaten favorite in the TSS & draws well to play an opportunist role



1-Donna Soprano – O’Brien Award winner rounding into form at the right time, steamrolled to a game upset over Beltassima in the Del Miller & draws inside to carve out a smooth trip


3-Swift Swanda – Red-hot Indiana star off to superb start this season @ Hoosier Park, freshened & tuned up a strong qualifier here, draws inside & might be worth a swing


7-Piper Hanover – Made it four in a row with a dominant score in the Reynolds slop, then set a slow pace & faded to third as the heavy chalk, Team Alagna-tuned filly has the talent to rebound from a tougher post



3-Johan Palema – Has matured & developed into a Hambo player, while leading the Team Svanstedt battalion, brimming with confidence off his dominance in the Yonkers Trot & draws inside fresh off a new mark of 1:50.4 here  


7-Captain Corey – PASS champion at two hit a road bump in PASS, but rebounded with a nice qualifier here, draws a more challenging post off a solid tightening mile in the slop & gives Team Svanstedt a strong 1-2 punch


5-Really Fast – Has quickly advanced from unraced 2YO to NJSS champion, Grand Circuit stakes winner to serious Hambo contender for Team Takter, fresh off a pretty confident new mark of 1:51.3 with Dexter at the lines



8-Perfect Sting – The Pace favorite gave it a gallant try on the engine & just missed, tough post, but fresh n sharp right now & has a big chance to get back in the win column


7-Whichwaytothebeach – Five for six this season & took a mark of 1:51 over an off track on July 3, then just missed to No Lou Zing in a qualifier with a :25.3


3-Caviart Lotus – Returns after winning two of his last three, both in a career best of 1:50.2, draws well back here to capitalize on the second half of his 3YO season 



6-Shake That House – Knocking on the door is an understatement with three close seconds in his last four, right there with the raging Cattlewash in a Haughton division & compliments his speedy stablemate


4-Angers Bayama – Has been a tad too fired up in his last two, although he held well in the Roll With Joe, looks like the pacesetter again, yet if he can be somehow rated watch out for his explosive late kick


7-Nicholas Beach – Won five of his last six prior to that record 1:47.4 qualifier for Team Bongiorno, then scratched sick from the Gerrity, now tough to gauge after two months off, yet must be seriously considered



3-Seriously Hanover – Beaten favorite landed on the fringe fourth when somewhat pace compromised last week, draws a bit better in an evenly matched finale


1-Stone Hanover – Bouncing back n forth from PA & The Big M with some success, not far off the classy Highalator last time & returns at a reduced level with the rail


6-Somebaddude – Had a no-chance trip tour of the oval from post ten last week, has done plenty of damage here in the past & gets another shot at this lesser condition








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Ken Warkentin has been a member of the award-winning broadcast team at Meadowlands Racetrack as the Track Announcer and television commentator for 25 years. Ken has appeared on national television networks such as ESPN, called 15 editions of the $1 million Hambletonian, and worked as a member of the broadcast team for NBC Sports and CBS Sports.

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