BY FRANK DRUCKER, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers Raceway
YONKERS, NY, Monday, August 25, 2014 – Yonkers Raceway Monday night hosted the $197,500 New York Sire Stakes Pat Quaglietta Trot for 2-year-old fillies.
Four divisions comprised the event.
Division leader Barn Doll (Jeff Gregory, $3.10) did nothing to diminish her standing, winning the $49,150 third division in 1:58.4…by far the night’s fastest. Racing second-up from post position No. 4, she went up and over a last-turn bolting Nunkeri (Mark MacDonald), beating that one by three-quarters of a length. Frou Frou (Jim Morrill Jr.) was a best-of-the-rest third. The effort was just two ticks off the track record (Some Girls, 2010) for this division.
“She’s just a professional and she enjoys what she does,” Gregory said. “Mark’s filly looked like she wanted to go home early, but nothing seems to bother (Barn Doll).
For Barn Doll, a daughter of Conway Hall co-owned by (trainer) Steve & Nancy Pratt and Purple Haze Stables, it was her sixth win in eight seasonal starts. The exacta paid $6.30, with the triple (three wagering favorites in order) returning $12.20.
Driver George Brennan doubled his pleasure in the first two ($49,150 each) sire stakes events, with odds-on Pig Hunt ($2.50) in 2:01, and second choice Counsellor AS ($5.80) in 2:00.3
The former, a Conway Hall miss, controlled from the pole, defeated pocket-sitting Zanna Blue (Gates Brunet) by three-quarters of a length. Summer Scent (Dan Daley) was third.
For Pig Hunt, co-owned by (trainer) Jennifer and Janice Connor, she’s now 4-for-7 this season. The exacta (two wagering faves in order) paid $8.20, with the triple returning $28.40.
“The best thing about her? She trots,” Brennan said. “I was able to back it down enough (1:31.3 three-quarters) to make sure she had something late.” Both Barn Doll and Pig Hunt are 2-for-2 locally in NYSS competition.
Counsellor AS, second-up from post No. 4, went right by even-money Miss B’ville J (Morrill Jr.), drawing out to win by a couple of lengths. Make it Blue Chip (Ray Schnittker) was third.
For “Counsellor,” a Conway Hall homebred miss owned Acl Stuteri Ab and trained by Annette Lorentzon, it was her third win in eight ’14 tries. The exacta paid $14.40, with the triple returning $30.40.
“She’s learning,” Brennan said. “I think she’d have won the last time, but I drove her off her feet.”
The evening’s final ($50,050) sire stakes event went to down-the-road favorite Concentration (Sears, $4.30)—from post No. 4--in 1:59.3. The margin was a length-and-three-quarters over, Duolectra (Brennan), who skimmed to cones to grab second at 28-1. Shaqline (Jimmy Takter) was third.
For Concentration, a daughter of Conway Hall owned by Raymond Campbell and trained by George Ducharme, she’s 3-for-7 in her first season. The exacta paid $88.50, with the triple returning $332.50.
A special Monday shoutout to the veteran Wholly Louy, whose win in the $21,000, 10th-race pace made him harness racing’s newest millionaire (66-for-220, $1,000,063).
The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule continues, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily.