Monday's opening race from Mountaineer is a $17,600 Maiden Special Weight affair for 3-year-olds and up traveling six furlongs on the main track.
#5 Big Punch (4-1) had an inconclusive debut after taking up at the start in the mud. He exits a speed/fade trip at a flat mile and could be poised to break through in his third lifetime start. A shrewd veteran handicapper I used to hang out with at the track made a living on this type of turnback runner and the gelded son of Magna Graduate should offer a hint of value for the productive Hernandez/Garcia team.
$12 to win, $18 to place #5
analysis by Jarrod Horak