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The Friday card is in jeopardy

The Friday card is in jeopardy


By Shawn Rychling

Don’t look now, but we are into March as NYRA’s Aqueduct meet slows down a little bit with just three-day racing weeks from now through April 8 – with the exception of Easter weekend as state law forbids racing on Sunday, April 1.

That next weekend will feature New York’s marquee prep for the Kentucky Derby – the Grade II Wood Memorial.  Still coming up in March will be the Gotham for 3-year-olds on Saturday, March 10 along with two other stakes events.

The early winter was marred by a solid three weeks of cancellations as bitter cold, snow, thawing temperatures, and even fog played havoc with the racing. Things have turned around though and NYRA hasn’t lost a day since Jan. 8. However, as of this writing a big storm is bearing down on New York and it makes us think the Friday card is in jeopardy with heavy rain and wind gusts over 50 miles per hour in the forecast.

Despite the cancellations, the racing has been a victim of some short fields and only with races on some days. NYRA is all-in on winter racing however and a closer look at winter handle year-to-year may be an interesting study to do and one we may try to pull together.

As for now, here is hoping Aqueduct runs on Saturday and we will look at the late pick 4.

Race 6: (8) Professor Snape suffered wide trips last two starts, but note those races were his fastest ever and he should be ready here third off a layoff. (3) Sicilia Mike has run second three straight starts and beat our top pick last time. (4) Scarf It Down has hit the board in eight consecutive starts. (10) Going Strong enters off two sharp bullet works for new barn.

Race 7: (5) The Great Samurai improved in last two starts and loves the new Big A main track. (8) Guick has posted top two speed figures in last two races and the barn is red hot this meet. (7) Dynamax Prime has been away since August, but also ran very well in two stakes races over the summer. (2) Special Story shows solid races in non-restricted races.

Race 8: (6) Gypsy Janie (C) steps up for this one, but likes a wet track and speed figures are comparable with contenders here.  Price may make this one attractive. (3) Midnight Disguise took a similar stakes here in January and has moved forward last two tries. (2) War Heroine owns fastest career race, but note it did come on the turf. (1) Sara Street improved sharply last start and makes third career start.

Race 9: (2) Lune Lake owns best, last-race speed figure. (3) My Lightnin Strike has run faster last two starts and form is on the upswing. (7) Starlite Mission drops in first time for a tag. (5) Rosey Gal and (9) Scripted could be live first-time starters.

The Grid:

A                     B                     C

Race 6                         8                      3, 4                  10

Race 7                         5                      7, 8                  2

Race 8                         3, 6                  2                      1

Race 9                         2, 3                  7                      5, 9

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