Thursday, February 17, 2022

Lately at The Meadowlands, it’s been a playground for 20-cent Pick-6 fans, as carryovers have been offered each of the last two Fridays (Feb. 4 and 11), and while that streak will end when racing resumes this Friday (Feb. 18), you can bet The Big M faithful will watch closely to see if another carryover is imminent when the next sequence concludes.

“The 20-cent Pick-6 has been a nice addition to The Meadowlands wagering menu,” said track Chief Operating Officer and General Manager Jason Settlemoir. “The 15 percent rake and negative takeout on carryover nights has created a very popular dynamic for our horseplayers. It certainly has brought players to our signal for the later races. Given the low minimum, using two horses per race costs $12.80, which is an easily affordable play for most of our guests.”

How about a bet that pays out more than it takes in?

On Feb. 4, there was a double carryover of $14,033, which led to $61,639 in “new money” being bet into the pool, for a grand total of $75,672. Since the carryover is not subject to the “rake”, that meant players were vying for $66,427, a surplus of $4,788, good for a return of 107 percent.

Many a bettor cashed in that night, as the payout of $2,012.86 came after a sequence where winner’s odds were an anything-but-outrageous 3-1, 3-5, 4-1, 4-5, 1-1 and 9-2. Players who used three horses in all six legs – and ended up with a winning ticket – needed only invest $145.80 to walk away with the cash. Had those same players singled one of the two odds-on choices, their investment plummeted to $48.60.

While a $2,000 hit is something to brag about, cashing in for $13,748.98 is worthy of a much louder celebration. That was the return after a carryover of $8,572 led to $38,443 in new money for a total pool of $47,016 on Feb. 11. Those three winning tickets came from a pool that had a surplus of $2,806, a return of 107 percent for a second consecutive Pick-6 carryover.

The challenging sequence saw winner’s odds of 15-1, 6-1, 8-1, 8-5, 6-5 and 5-2 while still including two post-time choices.

The 20-cent Pick-6 is one of a half-dozen opportunities players get nightly to go for big green while swimming in large pools that offer a low 15 percent takeout.

Here is a list of those wagers, and when they are offered:

  • Race 1: 20-cent Pick-5
  • Race 3:20-cent Survivor Pick-7
  • Race 6: 50-cent Early Pick-4 ($50,000 guaranteed pool)
  • Race 8:20-cent Pick-6
  • Race 10: 50-cent Late Pick-4 ($50,000 guaranteed pool)
  • Race 13:10-cent Pentafecta/Hi-5

FREE PROGRAMS: Free past performances for every race of every Meadowlands program are available 48 hours before a given card. To access the no-cost official program pages, go to playmeadowlands.com.

GINGRAS AND BURKE KEEP ROLLING: The early-season dominance of the Dynamic Duo that is driver Yannick Gingras and trainer Ron Burke continues to chug along.

Last weekend (Feb. 11-12), Gingras had won only twice from the first 22 races, but then swept the Saturday night Late 50-cent Pick-4 to finish with a half-dozen winner’s circle visits. The 42-year-old Hall of Fame bound pilot now has 37 winners at the Winter Meeting, which puts him well in front of Joe Bongiorno, who is next with 19 trips to victory lane.

The 52-year-old Hall of Fame bound Burke won five times over the course of last Friday and Saturday – with his go-to guy in green Gingras guiding four – and now has 20 wins at the meeting, precisely double the number of runner-up Jeff Cullipher.

Gingras and Burke have teamed up to win the last two Saturday night Preferred paces with Covered Bridge.

WHHC QUALIFIER: Forget about a dollar and a dream. At The Big M Saturday (Feb. 19) night, all it takes is $200 and some handicapping skill when $5,000 in prize money and two seats to the World Harness Handicapping Championship Final on Sept. 10 are at stake in another qualifier.

Walk-ups will be accepted from 5:30-6:20 p.m., and players may choose to pay the non-refundable entry fee either by cash or money order/cashier’s check made payable to “Meadowlands Racetrack”. Personal checks and credit cards will not be accepted.

For more information, go to https://playmeadowlands.com/event/1694/

LIVE RACING SCHEDULE: Racing at The Big M is conducted on a Friday-Saturday basis and has a first-race post time of 6:20 p.m.

The track’s live “Racing from The Meadowlands” pre-game show kicks off nightly at 5:47 p.m.

GET ON TWITTER: Everything Meadowlands is available by going on Twitter. You can check in with the Big M team for early changes, racing information and staff selections by going to @themeadowlands or #playbigm.

On race nights, stay in touch with Jessica Otten (@JessicaOtten1), Dave Brower (@eedoogie), Dave Little (@DaveLittleBigM), Ken Warkentin (@kenvoiceover), Shades (@ShadesOnRacing) and Edison Hatter (@Edison_1999_).

WHO DOES BROWER LIKE? For expert selections and analysis of every Big M card, check out track oddsmaker Dave Brower’s race reviews.

For Brower’s input, which is generally available 48 hours before every card, go to playmeadowlands.com, then click on the “handicapping” tab and go to “race reviews”.

CHECK OUT “THE BOOK”: For those who like to bet on sports, there is only one place to be: The FanDuel Sportsbook, the No. 1 facility of its type in the world. Meadowlands’ fans don’t have to go far to get there. It’s located inside the grandstand at the mile oval.

Thursday (Feb. 17) night, the new-look Brooklyn Nets host the Washington Wizards in a 7:30 p.m. tipoff. The Nets, winners of two straight, are a 4½-point favorite who are -190 on the money line. The under/over is 215.

For those who like prop bets, the Nets’ new long-range shooter, Seth Curry, is -112 to score more than 16½ points on the night.

Hours for the book are Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m.-1 a.m.; Friday 10 a.m.-2 a.m.; Saturday 7 a.m.-2 a.m. and Sunday 8 a.m.-12 a.m.