Sunday, August 13, 2017

Rose Takes Photo in Hambletonian Society Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge

(August 13, 2017) – With only two races on the docket this weekend, it figured to be a close finish and indeed it was as three handicappers came together at the wire but Matt Rose was the winner of the photo for weekly honors in the Hambletonian Society Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge.   Rose bested Dennis O’Hara and Bryan Owen who dead-heated for second, 57 to 48.75 points.  With his victory this weekend, Rose moved back into second place, easily within striking distance of the overall leader Megan Maccario.

On Friday (8/11), O’Hara and Owen tabbed Hoosier Park’s Dan Patch Stakes victor Check Six ($13.40) which allowed them to dead-heat for the top spot at the end of the evening’s action by earning 42.50 points.  However, on Saturday (8/12), Rose was the sole handicapper to tab Downbytheseaside ($11.60) in Northfield Park’s Carl Milstein Memoria which gave him 55 points. 

When the points were tallied in the overall contest, Maccario maintained her lead for a second week with a total of 681.48 points. Rose moved up from third into second place with 667.13 points, just 14.35 points off the lead.  Dropping to third was Rusty Nash with 658.95, easily within striking distance of the leader.

Standings as of Saturday, August 12, 2017 - Leg #38
Pos
Handicapper
Total Points Earned
Legs Won
Last Week
Streak
1st
Megan Maccario
681.48
7
1st
2
2nd
Matt Rose
667.13
7
3rd

3rd
Rusty Nash
658.95
6
2nd

4th
Russ Adams
593.12
6
4th

5th
Sally Hinckley
559.98
6
5th

6th
Dennis O’Hara
555.43
6
8th

7th
Ray Garnett
546.11
3
6th

8th
Gordon Waterstone
539.00
5
7th

9th
Anne Stepien
518.40
5
10th

10th
Steve Horoky
505.41
3
9th

11th
Bryan Owen
451.73
5
11th

12th
Jay Hochstetler
395.75
3
12th

13th
Terry Wilson
384.47
4
13th

14th
Michael Carter
376.03
3
14th

15th
Adam Friedland
296.80
1
15th

16th
Ray Cotolo
253.33
1
16th





Next Up: Friday, August 18 at Vernon Downs hosts the finals of the $370,000 (estimated) Zweig Memorial and $150,000 (estimated)Zweig Filly Stake for three year old trotters.  Saturday, August 19 brings the Grand Circuit to Red Shores-Charlottetown Driving Park for the fan-favorite Sobey Gold Cup and Saucer.  On Sunday, August 20, Tioga Downs hosts the estimated $175,000 Roll With Joe for open pacers and the third leg of the Ms. Versatility for distaff trotters as well as Hippodrome 3R hosting the $200,000 Prix d’Ete for 4yo pacers.

The following weekend (August 25-26), Mohawk Racetrack will be hosting the Nassagaweya (two year old pacers) and the Eternal Camnation (two year old filly pacers) on Saturday night while Tioga Downs hosts on Sunday the Crawford Farm Trot (open trotters) and Joie De Vie (filly and mare trotters) as well as the Artiscape for (filly and mare pacers).

The 2017 Hambletonian Society Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge is sponsored by Adam Friedland, DRF Harness, Green Acquisition Corporation, The Hambletonian Society, Hoosier Park Racing and Casino, Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment, Northfield Park, Ontario Harness Horse Association, Red Shores Charlottetown/Summerside, Tioga Downs, Vernon Downs, Wellbourne Farms, and WEG Entertainment.  The contest is administered by HANA Harness, the harness racing division of HANA, the Horseplayers Association of North America.  Fans may follow the challenge by visiting the contest site at http;//hanaharnesscontest.blogspot.com


Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Owen Takes Week, Maccario Takes Lead in Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge

(August 8, 2017) – Hambletonian weekend provided plenty of races for the handicappers to digest and when the weekend was over, Bryan Owen was a runaway winner for the week with a total of 103.75 points, 48 points ahead of his nearest competitor.  Meanwhile, Megan Maccario’s 55.75 points for the week were enough to take the overall lead from Rusty Nash.

Owen won the 11-race Hambletonian (August 5) slate with only three winners on the card, but only needed Sam McKee Memorial Winner Check Six ($79) which credited his tally with $111.40, netting him a net profit of $72.40 for the day. Jay Hochstetler and Nash both earned  honorable mention by selecting four winners for the day.

On Monday (August 7), designated a Special Stakes Day, the handicappers took on the inaugural Lady Luck and Ralph Klein Memorial at Century Downs and with a duo of favorites winning, a quartet of handicappers, Russ Adams, Jay Hochstetler, Maccario, and Nash, dead0heaated by tabbing the two winners.

With regards to the overall contest lead, Maccario’s tally of 55.75 points for the week gives her a total of 678.23 which puts her in first place.  Nash’s 34 points (654.95 points) was good to place him second while Matt Rose’s 29 points (610.3 points overall) allows him to remain in third.  Thanks to his performance this week, Owen advanced from fourteenth to eleventh place.


Standings as of Monday, August 7, 2017 - Leg #36
Pos
Handicapper
Total Points Earned
Legs Won
Last Week
Streak
1st
Megan Maccario
673.23
6
2nd
1
2nd
Rusty Nash
654.95
6
1st

3rd
Matt Rose
610.13
6
3rd

4th
Russ Adams
584.87
5
4th

5th
Sally Hinckley
543.73
5
7th

6th
Ray Garnett
537.86
3
5th

7th
Gordon Waterstone
530.75
5
6th

8th
Dennis O’Hara
506.68
5
9th

9th
Steve Horoky
501.41
3
8th

10th
Anne Stepien
487.15
5
10th

11th
Bryan Owen
402.98
3
14th

12th
Jay Hochstetler
391.75
3
11th

13th
Terry Wilson
380.47
4
12th

14th
Michael Carter
364.03
3
13th

15th
Adam Friedland
296.80
1
15th

16th
Ray Cotolo
249.33
1
16th








Next Up:  A light weekend is ahead for the HANA Handicappers as the Dan Patch Invitational will be contested Friday evening (August 11) at Hoosier Park while the Carl Milstein Memorial will be contested Saturday (August 12) at Northfield park.
The following week has the contest heading north for the Zweig Memorial for 3yo trotters of both sexes at Vernon Downs on Friday while Tioga Downs hosts the Roll With Joe for Open pacers and the Miss Versatility for older trotting mares.  In addition, Hippodrome 3R will present the Prix d’Ete Pace for 4yo pacers. 

The 2017 Hambletonian Society Grand Circuit Handicapping Challenge is sponsored by Adam Friedland, DRF Harness, Green Acquisition Corporation, The Hambletonian Society, Hoosier Park Racing and Casino, Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment, Northfield Park, Ontario Harness Horse Association, Red Shores Charlottetown/Summerside, Tioga Downs, Vernon Downs, Wellbourne Farms, and WEG Entertainment.  The contest is administered by HANA Harness, the harness racing division of HANA, the Horseplayers Association of North America.  Fans may follow the challenge by visiting the contest site at http;//hanaharnesscontest.blogspot.com.