by Michael Chamberlain, Vernon Downs Publicity
House Money (Angus Hall-Emmamzaing) received an excellent drive from trainer-driver Roman Lopez to score a victory in the $9,000 feature race at Vernon Downs on Friday night. House Money actually sat the pocket trip behind early leader War Hero (Frank Davis), who set fractions of 28 seconds for the quarter, 57.3 for the half, and 1:25.4 for three-quarters. House Money then commenced a rally at the inside and challenged War Hero in the stretch, going past and winning by two lengths in a time of 1:54.1 War Hero suffered a break deep in the stretch, so while he crossed the line fourth, he was disqualified for violating the breaking rule and placed sixth. Evil Urges (Jimmy Whittemore) sat fifth in the field of six during the early stages of the race and then moved nicely through the lane to get second. Pollux Blue Chip (Claude Huckabone III) finished third. The complete order of finish was: House Money, Evil Urges, Pollux Blue Chip, A Penny Earned, My Revenuer, and War Hero. House Money is owned by Mitchell Frair and Thomas and Kimberley Frarey of Sherrill, New York.
Jimmy Whittemore might have been the runner-up in the feature race, but he scored three victories on the evening as he continues to close in on 1,000 career victories. With the three wins on Friday night, Whittemore is currently at 997 lifetime wins. He was in the sulky for Don't Miss A Tweet in the first race, Ilovemymommy in the second race, and Funny Photo in the seventh race. Whittemore has drives in nine of the ten races scheduled for the Saturday night program at Vernon Downs, so it is conceivable that he reached the milestone of 1,000 wins before the end of the weekend.