Ken Warkentin’s February 25 & February 26 Selections

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Ken Warkentin’s Friday, February 25 Selections

5-Captain’s Reign – Red-hot item at the bottom claiming level in another new barn, loves the Big M & lands midpack in a field ripe for the taking

6-Doc Semalu – Steady 8YO more than lived up to the tote hype & tripped out to a sharp 1:56.2 tally @ Freehold, the barn & driver have strong numbers

2-Takeittotheface – No factor when reaching too high in the Freehold Preferred Handicap, a solid third here before that, three-time winner already this season draws inside

2-DL’s Big Elvis – Beaten favorite a solid runner up to Opus Blue Chip, draws better, keeps Yannick Gingras & remains in top form, big chance to turn the tables

3-Opus Blue Chip – Went straight down the road to a dominant score fresh off the Richard Johnson claim, draws post three again & retains Joe Bongiorno

7-Pirates Alley – The Pirate rallied from a tough spot to upset these two starts back, didn’t have the same knockout punch last week & banks on a hot pace

6-Bungalow Bill N – Flashed a :27.2 to hit the board two starts back & that effort would beat these, draws a bit better, only one for his last 31, but somebody has to win this

2-S McKee – Landed on the edge fifth two starts back, faded into the icy stretch gusts last Saturday, draws post two again, loves the Big M & overdue

7-Doctor Butch – Classy 12YO warhorse hasn’t been heard from in his last few, but this is a much softer spot for him to get aggressive & revive

5-Toccoa Falls – Rallied to a new mark of 1:53.4 first time Lasix, then severely pace compromised into strong gusts last Saturday, major threat to rebound for Engblom

2-You Will Be Queen – Brushed from post seven & almost held on her Big M debut two starts back & returns with an improved post & The Money Man

8-Stay Close – Team Burke trainee got aggressive & held on for a dead heat win with Spunkin’srocketman last week, tougher post, but has blastoff potential

2-Lionhead – Knocking on the door in his last two, angled & surged to hit the board just behind Halliama last week, back inside & might be on the verge

3-Halliama – Superb bounce back win with a sterling :27.4 rally last week, great job by Alek Chartrand & rewarded with another inside post for the repeat attempt

9-Classic Venture – Fired out in his last two, had more sustain last week & just missed, stuck outside again, yet remains a contender

6-Cool Blues Man – Sat off the dueling leaders, got going airborne late in a wicked :27.2 into gale force stretch headwinds, decisive score three starts back

5-Manhattan Beach – Cleared past the three eighths, took on immediate pressure from Winning Linc & held off a late surge from Cool Blue Man into icy gusts, what an effort!

8-Winning Linc – Was roughed up about as much as one could battling Manhattan Beach & still held third, stuck outside, but looms large in his second start off the claim

5-Notabadgame – Overmatched in his last two, a dominant GSY force in January, two weeks off & back class prevails from midpack for a sharp barn

6-El’s Disco Johnny – Dipped into this GSY Series, fired out from post nine & just missed last week for Juan Cano, look for a similar strategy in a competitive division

9-Dream Out Loud N – 15YO warhorse responded to perfect rating by Tony Beltrami & held on gamely as the heavy favorite, moves outside, yet remains a live item

4-Filly – Dove to the inside & got nosed out by April Ava in a wicked :26.2 last week, improving 4YO draws inside again for her key third start off the bench for Team Bongiorno

3-April Ava – What a Big M transition mile last week when she kept coming uncovered & barely prevailed for Team Burke, draws post three again as a big threat to repeat

5-A Better Game – Drops back down a touch off a no chance mile from post seven, steamrolled to the mile of her life before that & draws a bit better

4-Wakemeshakeme – One of two new Team Burke acquisitions in here, solid qualifier off a sick scratch, draws well & worth a swing in a field filled with question marks

6-Juxta Cowgirl – Yannick got this girl way too revved up on the engine & she stopped last week, almost wire-to-wire before that & has a big chance to rebound

3-In The Night – That was a pretty convincing wire-to-wire romp at the bottom condition level last week, draws better for the step up in career form

6-Yanks Dugout – Reeled off three in a row @ Dover Downs, including back-to-back Opens, ships into a prime spot here to rebound off a loss

5-Kenziesky Hanover – Solid runner up in her last two, game effort from post eight & almost held on into wicked stretch headwinds, draws better in sharp form

1-Skyway Kon Man – The Kon Man finally moves inside for Team Cullipher, this is an ideal spot for him to trip out in stalking mode & possibly be a factor late

7-Knight Angel – Looks to rebound off a rare miscue with some class relief for Team Bongiorno, tougher post here & looks for some decent fractions to shoot at

2-Beantown Madness – Consistent 4YO has been dropping positive hints, just missed to Stormont Ventnor with a mighty late surge last week & draws inside again in a tricky puzzle

4-Stormont Ventnor – Was able to turn his game around in a big way with a class drop & steamrolled first over for Team Cullipher, draws well to prove that was no fluke

1-Pappy Rocks – 11-time winner in 2021 flashed some late pace from a tough spot last week & now moves inside a field of several easy toss outs

4-Flash A Smile – Chased a pretty strong winner In The Night last week, second in a deadheat before that, so she’s hinting with another inside draw

3-Be Best – Enjoyed a productive January, then tailed off this month, horse-for-the-course has post three again with a chance to regroup in a wide-open affair

2-Buzz – Note the much-improved second to Trixie Dust last week, draws a better post & was facing a lot tougher earlier this year

7-Trixie Dust – Fresh off a powerhouse repeat from post nine last week, 8YO reeled off the mile of her life & tackles another step up from a challenging post

10-Hockey Hanover – Hockey has been off form since the mid-January sick scratch & lands outside, but gets another class drop & owns speed

Ken Warkentin’s Saturday, February 26 Selections

3-Tony Too Tall – Reclaimed by Jeff Gillis & has remained sharp @ Yonkers, gets a slight hike in price here, but draws inside & reunited with our leading pilot

4-Rockin Speed – Regained his winning form with a confident romp @ Pocono, solid runner up here three starts back & Team Bongiorno have a 1-2 punch in this intriguing opener

1-Motive Hanover – Has been dropping positive hints all over the place recently, fresh claim by Team Bongiorno, who have had three weeks to fine tune him & lands the rail

7-Laughagain Hanover – Just one for his last 27 & winless this year, yet that was a mighty late surge into gale force headwinds last week, tougher post, but trending right

6-Truffle Dog – Beaten even money favorite tried to take it all the way & almost held on into icy gusts last week, persistence could pay off for this consistent Team Cullipher trainee

1-Captain My Captain – Finished a solid second to dominant Fika Time last Friday, lightly raced 4YO with upside in line for another smooth trip from the rail

6-Mcerlean – 13YO millionaire arrives fresh off a solid third @ Yonkers after missing a month, this a real soft spot for him to exploit & has three-time defending Driver of the Year

1-Constntlysidewys A – Classy 11YO ships back to The Big M fresh off a much-needed wake up win @ Freehold, draws the rail & the Thunder from Downunder returns

2-Rockabilly Charm – Struggled in his most recent GSY Series miles, wasn’t heard from last week, but loves this track, lands post two again & switches to Mr. Saturday Night

8-Hippestcatintown – Sat a pocket, locked behind a fading Leon David, then angled with late pace into strong headwinds, nice acclimating mile, moves outside, but he’s a top player

4-Buy In – Here’s the other Team Burke trainee who took his requisite tour of the oval from post seven last week, draws better & has license to stalk n pop this wide-open crew

1-Nutcracker Sweet – That was an explosive upset two starts back, then could not believe how hard he was used last week, still rounding back into form since the sick scratch

5-Hes Gone Badder – Could not be going any better, 8YO with back-to-back lifetime marks, moves to midpack & can easily tack on another in this camera-shy TM division

3-Jumping Jake – Finished well in his last two at the bottom condition level, runner up to a standout from post nine last Friday & draws inside again for our Driver of the Week

4-Sonic Flare – Late-January claim was on a recent roll before tossing in a clunker last week & has a chance to regroup from an improved post

2-Rockin M – Went all the way against $75,000 claimers last month, finished well from a tough spot @ Yonkers last out, back here with class & post relief for Team Bongiorno

1-Whitecookie – Note his solid off-the-pace effort back on February 5 for Team Burke, now drops & draws the rail after he didn’t fade much into stretch winds last week

7-Ana Afreet N – Got parked first over into a quickening pace, then chased a runaway into chilly headwinds last week, tougher post now, but drops a notch with several others

4-Air Guitar – Steamrolled first over to a new lifetime mark fresh off the Team Bongiorno claim, improving 4YO back in for a tag, draws inside again will likely be forwardly placed

7-Wrappers Delight – 9YO had plenty of hippity hop in his last two, came right back off the career best of 1:51.4 to repeat as a fresh claim by Edwin Quevedo, serious contender again

1-Way To Close – Beaten favorite brushed to the front & didn’t miss by much, game winner before that draws the rail trying keep his every-other pattern going

5-Ocean Ridge N – Absolutely crushed a soft bunch for his first US win, steps up against several class droppers here, but he is clearly heading skyward in a field of question marks

8-Trump Nation – Gets his third straight class drop for Team Burke off a solid third from post eight last week, tactical gate speed can put him in play & he’s long overdue

9-Montana Chief A – Flashed that sneaky good :27.2 last quarter into strong headwinds to just miss last week, stuck outside, but gathering steam on the comeback trail

2-All Hands On Deck – Unleashed a mighty flurry to narrowly deny No Lou Zing last week, now draws better for Team Bongiorno & expect more in his second start off the bench

1-No Lou Zing – Continues to regain his form for Team Takter, second by a nose to All Hands On Deck with super late surge last week & now moves inside

10-De Los Cielos Deo – Caught fire with that post nine romp back on January 8, two more dominant wins from outside posts in his last two for Team Burke & tough to dismiss

2-American History – Classy Team Alagna trainee brushed n dominated them as heavy favorite & lands post two again for his third start off the bench

3-Covered Bridge – Team Burke trainee came right back to repeat wire-to-wire despite missing three weeks & moves inside with options & license to make it three straight

8-Captain Barbossa – 1:47.1 track record setter last year was flying late in :26 in his comebacker two weeks ago, stuck outside, but has more in the tank

6-Blood Brother – 10YO with a ton of back class was a pretty solid third in his Freehold comeback, now it’s his second try off the bench in a wide-open TM division

3-Darth Fader – George Brennan went Minister & he was caught in the final strides by So Take That into last week’s strong headwinds, draws better & continues to ramp it up

8-So Take That – 13YO on a form spree hasn’t missed the board this season, fresh off a mild upset over Darth Fader, moves outside, yet remains a serious threat

6-Undertaker – January claim took a couple of starts to show improvement with a solid second from post nine, draws a bit better with some back class in his arsenal

5-Sunshine’s Finest – Finished a decent fourth in a much-needed first start off the bench, productive sort last season figures to offer more since the mid-January claim

4-War Dan Delight N – Just one for his last 37, but this steady check earner @ Yonkers just missed here as the favorite back on New Years Eve, gets a barn change & inside post

6-Betting Exchange – Crushed N/W $10,000 first over @ Yonkers two starts back, 10YO gets at least a double class drop & can get aggressive in his mile track transition

1-Rogerthatbluechip – Team Bongiorno claim paid instant dividends with an easy & well-rated down the road mission, bumped up with the rail & looms large to repeat

4-Rollinwithambition – Steady closer on the edges so far this season, stalking style & big late kick might be more effective if the pace sets up right