The final two days of Canterbury’s 53-day season will be conducted this Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 16 and 17. Entries were taken this morning and well into the afternoon for both days with 24 races in the condition book plus another 15 extras with many of those taken for both genders. Connections scrambled to get one last race before shipping out or turning out and racing office officials assisted gladly as horses were shuffled from here to there as the final product took shape. When it was all over, two cards with 13 races each and a total of 247 horses entered were the result.
With this smorgasbord of gambling opportunity, a 4 p.m. post on each night has been declared, 30 minutes earlier than usual.
These last days can be tricky yet financially profitable for those handicappers solving the puzzle. It’s a grab bag of horses running above their conditions, at distances that may not be their best, and often dropping in class. The punters will be given an opportunity to score huge on Wednesday as the first Pick 5 carryover of the season became reality after a $109 winner, the only horse not covered in last night’s final race, got home making for a $41,427 carryover.
“A Wednesday with not much else going on; this is the perfect midweek pick five to hit for size and send the lucky ones into the weekend with a good start,” racing analyst Brian Arrigoni said. “I expect there to be more than $250,000 bet into the pool with the low takeout and big fields. This could produce a big payout.”
Wednesday’s Pick 5 with a 50 cent base and an industry low 10% takeout, will begin in race 9 at 8:05 p.m.
Thursday’s card includes two stakes, each with $50,000 purses. The Shakopee Juvenile goes six furlongs for 2-year-olds. Six entered. The Shakopee is the eighth race on the card.
The Tom Metzen HBPA Sprint, is also six panels, and attracted seven including undefeated Slews Hymn, winner of three races including his career debut early in the meet. Wade Rarick trains the surprising 5-year-old. Leading jockey Ry Eikleberry has been named to ride the horse that could be considered for Horse of the Meet or Sprinter of the Meet honors with a convincing win on closing night. The Metzen is race nine.
The weather forecast calls for warm and dry conditions ideal for turf racing both evenings. And there will be plenty of it with 11 races carded over the sod.