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Saturday, September 29, 2012


BY FRANK DRUCKER, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers Raceway

YONKERS, NY, Friday, September 28, 2012--Yonkers Raceway's usual Friday night pair of $44,000 co-featured Open Handicaps--for distaff pacers and both-genders-allowed trotters--were won by odds-on Royal Cee Cee N (George Brennan, $2.80) and just-above-even-money Arriba Amigo (ditto Brennan, $4.30).

Assigned penultimate post position No. 7, Royal Cee Cee N had to wait her turn early. Four-deep in the first turn, she eventually made the lead around Keeper's Destiny (Jim Pantaleano) just after a :27.1 opening quarter-mile.

From there, it was a soft :29.2 second interval (:56.3 half) before Naughtytiltheend (Brent Holland) tried it first-up. That one could never come close in and out of the 1:24.4 three-quarters, with "Cee Cee" taking a length-and-three-quarter lead into the lane.

She needed only to hold off the loose pocket-sitter, which she did by that same margin in 1:52.3. Rock N Soul (Jason Bartlett), last week's victress and this week's eight-hole beginner, rallied for third, with Naughtytiltheend and Hula's Z Tam (Pat Lachance) completing the cashers.    

For Royal Cee Cee N, a 6-year-old Down Under daughter of Christian Cullen owned and trained by Mark Harder, it was her seventh win (second consecutive since hitting town) in 22 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $13.80, with the triple returning $63.

Arriba Amigo kept the roll going, making its six wins in succession and 4-for-4 in Westchester.

Leaving from post No. 6, Arriba Amigo was immediately in play. He went up and over Master Pine (Pantaleano) and gave nothing else a chance (:27.4, :57.2, 1:26.1, 1:55.2). The final margin was 2¼ lengths, with KLM Express (Jim Marshall III) holding off Big Sky Storm (Jordan Stratton) for second. 

Bastille (Cat Manzi) and Master Pine grabbed the minor spoils.

For Arriba Amigo, a 5-year-old Amigo Hall gelding co-owned by (trainer) Josh Green, David Rovine and VIP Internet Stable, it was his seventh win in 19 '12 tries. The exacta (two wagering choices) paid $23.20, the triple returned $111.50 and  the superfecta paid $509.

Yonkers hosts its fourth annual Fall Harvest Festival Saturday night, highlighted by the $400,000 Fall Harvest Series. Eight, $50,000 races for New York-bred pacers and trotters comprise the event, which also features any number of fun, family events on the track apron from 5:30-9:30 PM. Also, the Legislators' Challenge--a trio of non-wagering events with New York elected officials doing battle--takes to the track beginning at 5:30.

The Raceway continues its normal five-night-per-week live schedule, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available around the NYRA schedule.