Thursday, November 2, 2023

– If there’s one thing that’s consistent about The Meadowlands, it’s the track’s ability to offer patrons different options to not only get their action, but to go out and experience a good night’s worth of entertainment as well.

From an at-the-windows point of view, with the Breeders Crown at Harrah’s Hoosier Park having been contested last week, The Big M is ready to retake its spot as the industry’s handle leader, and there should be plenty of action this weekend at the mile oval, when racing takes place on Friday and Saturday with a first-race post time of 6:20 p.m.

Friday’s 14-race program features a pair of TrackMaster Series finals as well as the Fall Harvest Series final, and punters figure to be very appreciative that a pair of multi-leg wagers will be reinstating guaranteed pools that total $100,000.

There will be a $50,000 total-pool promise provided on both the Early 50-cent Pick-4 (which begins in race six) and Late 50-cent Pick-4 (race 10).

“In addition, there is a double carryover of $2,657 on the brand-new 20-cent Pick-8,” said Big M Chief Operating Officer and General Manager Jason Settlemoir. “The Meadowlands offers eight wagers every night that have had their takeouts reduced significantly to a low 15 percent. This makes our payouts higher, which returns more money to the horseplayers so they can stay in action.

“The Meadowlands caters to horseplayers with big fields and big pools, and we want our faithful to know that we are always thinking of them and that we very much value their business. The Big M presents another extraordinary weekend of entertainment, where racing, sports, food and fun provide the festive Big M fall atmosphere.”

Saturday’s card will mark the return of many of the drivers who make up the strongest colony in the sport, and those pilots will go at it in four Crawford Farms Kindergarten Series finals for 2-year-olds of each sex and gait, with those four dashes – plus one consolation – going for purses totaling $953,800.

There is a superstar participating in the colts and geldings trot, as Breeders Crown winner Karl, who defeated Mohawk Million champion T C I at Hoosier, will depart from post 10. A Kindergarten win would go a long way toward a possible divisional trophy for Karl, a son of Tactical Landing-Avalicious, who has won seven-of-eight starts, his only loss coming to T C I by a nose in the International Stallion Stakes at Lexington’s Red Mile.

BET THE CUP: Thoroughbred fans love coming to The Big M and watching and wagering on the Triple Crown races, and fans of the “runners” can come on out and catch the year-end industry spectacle in the simulcast area when the 40th edition of the Breeders’ Cup takes place at California’s picturesque Santa Anita Park.

There will be five events on Friday (Nov. 3) and nine on Saturday (Nov. 4).

The Friday lineup features 2-year-olds in the Juvenile Turf Sprint (post time, 5 p.m. EDT), Juvenile Fillies (5:40 p.m.), Juvenile Fillies Turf (6:20 p.m.), Juvenile (7 p.m.) and Juvenile Turf (7:40 p.m.).

The Saturday events are the Dirt Mile (2:30 p.m.), Filly and Mare Turf (3:10 p.m.), Filly and Mare Sprint (3:50 p.m.), Mile (4:30 p.m.), Distaff (5:10 p.m.), Turf (5:50 p.m.), Classic (6:40 p.m.), Turf Sprint (7:25 p.m.) and Sprint (8 p.m.)

If you’d like to catch all of the action of the Breeders’ Cup in the simulcast areas, great, but if you’d like to have an exceptional dining experience as you watch and wager, check out the special Southern-themed buffet that will be offered.

For complete information, go here

Call 201-THE-BIGM for reservations. Dining begins at 4:30 p.m. with salads and appetizers before main dishes and sides are offered at 5:30 p.m.

CHILI COOK-OFF TIME: It’s time once again for one of the most popular promotions The Meadowlands offers, as on Saturday (Nov. 4), all chili and salsa chefs who think they have the right stuff can enter the track’s “Chili and Salsa Cook-off”.

So, you’re not a chef? No problem. Free samples will be given for the People’s Choice vote following the 8 p.m. turn-in. The event takes place in the Food Court and outdoor East Apron.

For complete information, and to enter, go here

THE GREAT EIGHT: The Meadowlands provides eight opportunities for the player to make a score trying their luck betting in pools with a low 15 percent takeout. The lineup of The Big M’s “Great Eight” is as follows (all wagers – with the exception of the Pick-7 – are carryover eligible):

  • Race 1: 20-cent Pick-5
  • Race 2: 20-cent Survivor Pick-7
  • Race 4: 20-cent Pick-8
  • Race 6: 50-cent Pick-4 ($50,000 guarantee)
  • Race 7: 20-cent High-5
  • Race 8: 20-cent Pick-6
  • Race 10: 50-cent Pick-4 ($50,000 guarantee)
  • Race 11: 20-cent High-5

THE SKED: The Meadowlands will race every Friday and Saturday through the end of the year, with two exceptions.

There will be no live racing on Friday, Nov. 24, while there will be live action on Thursday, Dec. 7.

Post time for every program is 6:20 p.m.

THE SHOW: Every live racing night, tune in at 5:45 p.m. for the track’s live simulcast “Racing from The Meadowlands” pregame show, with 30 minutes of harness news, analysis and staff selections to get you ready for the night.

This weekend, back from the Breeders Crown where they provided the commentary on the live Fox Sports 2 (FS2) broadcast, Big M TV’s Jessica Otten and the Red Mile’s Gabe Prewitt will be on the Sam McKee Memorial Broadcast Set on Friday before Prewitt joins Dave Little on Saturday.

Michael Carter, who will be doing some TV work at The Big M from time-to-time in the coming weeks, will provide the coverage for the track on FanDuel TV (FDTV) on Saturday after Little handles the commentary Friday.

DID YOU SAY FREE? Free past performances for every race of every Meadowlands card are available by going to

“X” MARKS THE SPOT: Everything Meadowlands is available by going on X (formerly known as Twitter). You can check in with the Big M team for early changes, racing information and staff selections by going to @themeadowlands or #playbigm.

Stay in touch with The Big M team of Otten (@JessicaOtten1), Little (@DaveLittleBigM) and Ken Warkentin (@kenvoiceover).

WITHERITE’S RACE REVIEWS: Race reviews and selections by The Meadowlands’ morning-line odds maker and program analyst James Witherite are available 48 hours before a given race card. To access, simply go to, go to the “handicapping” tab, then click “race reviews”.

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE: In November, The Big M stakes schedule is in high gear all month long.

On Saturday, Nov. 11, a total of $240,000 (est.) will be offered on the NJ Home Grown and NJ Garden State.

After eliminations (if necessary) are contested on Saturday, Nov. 18, the “Fall Final Four” and FanDuel Championships will make up a can’t-miss, date-circling-worthy night of competition on Saturday, Nov. 25 when an estimated $2.65 million comprise what is the third-biggest night of the Big M calendar year after Hambletonian Day and Meadowlands Pace Night.

The Fall Final Four is made up of the Governor’s Cup (2-year-old colt and gelding pace), Three Diamonds (2FP), Valley Victory (2CGT) and Goldsmith Maid (2FT). The FanDuel four pack is comprised of the Open Pace, Open Trot, Open Mare Pace and Open Mare Trot. All eight events figure to have great impact when ballots are cast at year’s end for both divisional honors and Horse of the Year.

FANDUEL’S TOPS: The FanDuel Sportsbook is the No. 1 sports wagering facility of its type in North America, and it’s located inside the grandstand of The Meadowlands.

Week 9 of the NFL season begins Thursday (Nov. 2) with the Tennessee Titans traveling to Pittsburgh to face the Steelers in an 8:15 p.m. kickoff. The Steelers are a 2½-point favorite who are -148 on the money in the game that has an under/over of 36½.

On Sunday (Nov. 5), the New York Giants head to Las Vegas for a 4:25 p.m. game with the Raiders, who are -1½ and -130 in the game that has an under/over of 37½.

Monday (Nov. 6) Night Football has the Los Angeles Chargers heading to MetLife Stadium for an 8:15 p.m. tilt with the New York Jets. The Chargers are -3½ and -176 in the game that has an under/over of 40½.

Whatever the sport, for the latest odds, go to here

The FanDuel Sportsbook is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m.-1 a.m.; Saturday 8 a.m.-1 a.m.; and Sunday 8 a.m.-midnight. For cash-at-counter customers, the hours are Monday through Friday 10 a.m.-11 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday 8 a.m.-11 p.m. The Lounge opens at noon on Sundays.