The best race of the weekend appears to be Sunday night’s $20,000 tenth race handicap trot, with the Revenue S gelding Melady’s Monet assigned early 5-2 favoritism, and for good reason – he just may be the best trotter in North America right now. The winner of $1.06M, trained by Kevin McDermott for Melady Enterprises LLC, is undefeated in a pair of 2017 starts, both against top trotters at The Meadowlands, and he has Brett Miller, familiar to area fans and currently The Meadowlands’ leading sulkysitter, coming in to drive.
Melady’s Monet even got some luck at the post position draw for the handicap event, even though he’ll be starting from post seven in a nine-horse field: the three highest moneywinners drew for the three outside posts, with Melady’s Monet in the seven-hole thus the “innermost” of the “outermost” horses.
Saturday’s top purse event is an $18,000 claiming handicap pace in race 5, with Crafty Master having to overcome the outside post eight after defeating the best horses on the grounds at Rideau Carleton in Ottawa in his last start. The co-features are a pair of $15,500 conditioned events for older performers, with the Amber Buter stable having a top contender in both – the $900,000 winner Zooming in the eighth race trot, and the hot City Hall, coming off two wins and a second in his last three starts, in the tenth race pace.
The focus of Tuesday’s racing will likely fall on younger horses prepping for the $700,000 Bobby Weiss Series contests starting up in early April. The four Weiss Series, named after Pocono’s famed trackman who was the main architect of the dark red oval becoming the favorite racing surface of countless top trainers, have been known to be a steppingstone to greatness – such was the case with J L Cruze, who won his 2015 Weiss Championship, then later that year went on to become one of only three trotters to ever beat 1:50 in a race, with a 1:49.4 triumph at The Meadowlands against the best in the sport.