Homeracing

Older pacers and trotters highlight Yonkers Saturday night card

Profile Picture: Ted Black

Ted Black

February 4th, 2018

One night before many Americans are set to watch the Super Bowl LII (52) clash between the defending champion New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles in the rematch of their Super Bowl XXXIV encounter, Yonkers Raceway hosted a solid card filled with overnight events for older pacers and trotters perhaps seeking minor glory of their own.

Just prior to the midway point of the Saturday night card at Yonkers, Q's Cruise (Tim Tetrick) lived up to his role as the 1-2 favorite in a non-winners of $20,000 last five starts class when he gained command from along the pylons through the first turn, then rebuffed a serious, first over bid from Fameous Western (Jordan Stratton) down the backside and through the far turn to score by a length in 1:54.4. A four-year-old Yankee Cruiser gelding trained by Jim King, Jr. for owner/wife Jo Ann Loomey-King, Q's Cruise notched his first win in two starts this year and now owns a 10-3-4 slate and $165,000 banked from 27 lifetime tries.

Then one race later in the $40,000 Open Handicap for trotters, Rubber Duck (Joe Bongiorno) lived up to his role as the even-money choice when he gained command from post three, rebuffed two bids from defending Open champion NF Happenstance (Jack Parker, Jr.) and held sway late to score in 1:56.2. A six-year-old Muscle Mass ridgling trained by Jen Bongiorno, Rubber Duck notched his first win in two starts this year and recorded his 15th win from 70 lifetime tries while getting the mile in 1:56.2. NF Happenstance was game in defeat, while Melady's Monet (Bartlett) rallied from an impossible spot to get third.

Then one race later in another non-winners of $20,000 last five starts class for pacers, Waves Of Fire A (Stratton) overcame an extended first over bid to wear down favored Polak A (Matt Kakaley) on the far turn and through the lane and then outkicked an unlucky, pocket-sitting Blood Brother (Bartlett) to score by a neck in 1:55.1. A seven-year-old Courage Under Fire gelding trained by William Adamczyk, Waves Of Fire A notched his second win from four starts this this year and posted his 15th victory from 63 lifetime tries. Blood Brother, who left from post seven and cleared early backside, was unlucky in the pocket behind a tiring Polak A, could not find room in the lane with plenty of pace and settled for the place spot and comes right back in this class next week and figures to be tough regardless of the draw.

Then one race later in the $40,000 Open Handicap for older pacers, an early prep for several of them for the lucrative, ultra-tough George Morton Levy Memorial Series which gets under way on St. Patrick's Day over the New York half-mile oval, Killer Martini (Bartlett) benefited from a second over journey and rallied wide late and wore down Dontcallmefrancis (Greg Merton) and Dream Out Loud N (Daniel Dube) to post a 7-1 upset in 1:54. A six-year-old Camluck gelding owned and trained by Ricky Bucci, Killer Martini recorded his first win in four starts this year and now owns a 14-19-13 slate and $240,000 banked from 95 lifetime outings.

Dontcallmefrancis benefited from a pocket trip and late collapse from pacesetter Thisjetsabookin to gain the place spot, while Dream Out Loud N was a game third following a long, first over bid. Christen Me N (Tetrick) likely needed the race and he was compromised by post seven and a parked out Orillia Joe (Brent Holland) and raced well just to get fourth. The 10-year-old Christian Cullen gelding trained by Jim King, Jr. saw his four-race win streak come to a halt but he should move forward off that effort and stay on target for the Levy series next month.

One race later on the card in a non-winners of $30,000 last five starts class for trotters, Mostinterestingman (Bartlett) gained command soon after the outset, carved out the fractions on an uncontested lead and held safe favored Dog Gone Lucky (Tetrick) for a length score in 1:56. A five-yeare-old Manofmanymissions gelding owned and trained by Ricky Bucci, Mostinterestingman posted his second straight victory and second win in five tries overall this year and notched his 11th win from 53 career outings and pushed his lifetime earnings to nearly $200,000 and he remains eligible to the same class next week.

Then one race later in the penultimate race on the card, the first half of the late daily double and the first portion of a split non-winners of $30,000 last five starts class for older pacers, McSpidey (Holland) lived up to his role as the 3-2 favorite from along the rail to gain command through the first turn, rebuffed a first over bid from A Sweet Ride (Kakaley) down the backside and through the far turn and held safe the pocket-sitting Quick Asa Trick N (Dube) to score in 1:54.

A four-year-old McArdle gelding trained by William Adamczyk for owner William Emmons, McSpidey notched his second straight victory and his third win in four starts this year and he now owns 11 wins and $140,000 banked from 38 career outings. Quick Asa Trick N slipped through along the inside to edge A Sweet Ride for the place spot, while Provocativeprince N was fourth after lacking racing room between horses in the lane.

A pair of $40/50,000 claiming handicap events for older pacers earlier on the card had plenty in common. Both Rock N Roll Legacy and Beat The Drum benefited from pocket trips to overhaul the leaders in the lane for narrow scores in 1:52.4 and 1:53.4, respectively, and both scored for the brother-sister tandem of driver Joe Bongiorno and trainer Jen Bongiorno. Rock N Roll Legacy notched his second win in four starts this year, while Beat The Drum recorded his first win in five tries this year and both avoided being claimed.

In the split non-winners of $20,000 last five starts/optional $30,000 claiming events for trotters on the first half of the card, both Fearless Man (Jason Bartlett) and Le Reveur N (Daniel Dube) and recorded sharp, wire-to-wire victories. Fearless Man, an eight-year-old Elegant Man gelding trained by Andrew Harris, notched his second win from four starts this year and posted his 34th victory from 119 lifetime outings while scoring in 1:56.1. Le Reveur N led throughout and disposed of first over 7-5 choice Watkins (Jordan Stratton) in 1:56.3 for his first win in four tries this year for trainer Rene Allard.
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