Race of the Week 2017

HRN Original Blog:
The Weekly Tout

Winter Blues At The Window

Spot Swale 615 X 400
Photo: Coglianese Photos/Natalie Fawkes


I’m cold and sick of watching the Weather Channel where I’m at. And if you are anywhere east of the Mississippi, you are most likely in the same boat as I am. The one thing that’s keeping me sane is the fact that I’m not the only one who is affected by the weather. It’s just as cold at your house as it is at mine, if you are in the frozen tundra that is the United States.  Throw in the fact that I’m cashing more tickets guess betting on the trotters than I am in races where they ride on top of the dern thangs and I’m just having a swell winter season.


My latest adventure at the window has left another bad taste in my mouth. And it was last Saturday when I had that sure thing, No Nay Never. I had him ten times across the board and I failed to gain my money back. I was never so sure of a horse than I was in the Swale at Gulfstream Park. I knew that horse was going to win and that was before Havana was pulled out for having a cracked hoof or something like that.


After that late scratch, it was all but automatic. I never even looked at a horse named Spot. I didn’t have to; my choice was the No Nay Never. It was a well informed, heart based bet. He was undefeated on the turf and I wasn’t worried about his first trip on dirt, I knew that he was going to win. (Mistake number 12,456) He didn’t, and a half hour later I hit a triple for one hundred bucks at the Meadowlands because I played my mothers birthday. Just call me Johnnie Hanover.


So why study the charts, racing forms and past performances when guess betting will pay more than an intelligent bet. Yes friends, I’m down to betting like my wife. I’m down to colors, birthdays and names and I’m doing the same as if I was Harry the Handicapper.


Places like Dover, Woodbine Harness and Yonkers have replaced Aqueduct, Santa Anita and Gulfstream Park. And they should because right now they are paying more with bets that are all about what I need to scrape off of my shoe than it is intelligence and craft.


Like the weather, I can’t really do anything about it. And should I? I’m hitting them as long as they don’t break stride; which they do every once in a while and it's more frustrating than golf. But mostly they pace or trot, I don’t know the difference as long as they fill my account. Do I care if it’s trotter or a thoroughbred? No, I want to win. And I’m getting more love lately on sulky racing then I do the flats.


But that’s at the virtual window.  In real life, I’m looking forward to attending the warmth and spring sun of the Wood Memorial, the early summer carnations of the Belmont and a hot August at the ‘Toga in upstate New York. Hopefully, my luck will change with the weather and I will be able to cash some tickets that are ridden and not driven. See you next time and riders up!


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Older Comments about Winter Blues At The Window...

I was so cold at AQU for the Gotham. I hope when I see you at the Wood that it will be a nice Spring day.
It's bound to get better sooner of later ... see you at the Belmont, Johnnie!

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Meet Johnnie Carrier


With 10 years of writing a humor column for his home town paper under his belt, Johnnie Carrier has decided to try something different. He is a graduate of the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey’s Clown College Class of 1977 and traveled the West with Circus Vargas in 1979.

 In the 80’s, Carrier lived in New York City and Boston, but he settled down however in the smallest city in Massachusetts late in the decade and married Dawn Luskin in ’88. David was born in 1991 and has been blessed with his father’s sense of humor, but luckily his mother’s good looks.

 Racing has been more than a casual interest having lived so close to Saratoga. He started going to the track at a very young age with his parents and has tried to instill that passion into his son by taking him at the same age. In 2003, Carrier started to write as a freelance writer with the North Adams Transcript and can be followed there at the paper’s website.  


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