By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile
LEXINGTON, KY-- A trio of divisions were carded for the $292,200 Bluegrass two-year-old colt pace and the $243,000 Bluegrass two-year-old filly pace, set to go on Friday, Oct. 2 at The Red Mile.
The opening split of the Bluegrass filly pace kicks off the Grand Circuit program, with seven fillies set to line up on the gate. Pennsylvania Sires Stakes final runner-up Call Me Queen Be headlines the event off a win in a $127,150 division of the Kentuckiana Stakes at Hoosier Park on Sept. 26. Owned by Let It Ride Stables and Dana Parnham, the Ross Croghan-trainee will face New Jersey Sires Stakes champion Blue Moon Stride, who enters off a 1:55.1 qualifier at Pocono Downs. She’s owned by Emilio and Maria Rosati and is trained by Mark Harder.
Pennsylvania Sires Stakes champion Pure Country, competing for the interests of Diamond Creek Racing, will be competing for her seventh win-in-a-row in the second division. Up against the Jimmy Takter-trained filly is She’s A Great Lady finalist Upside Surprise, drawing in after finishing fourth in a New York Sires Stakes split at Batavia Downs on Sept. 16. Trained by Ross Croghan, she’ll start from post 1.
Shezarealdeal leads the final division, shipping in after a win in a $35,000 division of the Liberty Bell at Harrah's Philadelphia. The $122,567 earner also had to her credit a fourth in the $350,000 Pennsylvania Sires Stakes final. Ross Croghan trains for interests Let It Ride Stables and Dana Parnham.
Ron Burke's pacer East Side Hanover is another contender in the last episode, coming into this race after finishing third in a division of the Liberty Bell. The Somebeachsomewhere filly's grand accomplishment came in the $40,000 Stallion Series, where she won by 12 1/2 lengths in 1:54.2. She'll start from the rail.
Prefacing the final filly group is the premier colt split, going for $97,400. Tony Alagna-trained American Passport, starting from post 5, broke his maiden in his last mile, winning in 1:52.2 in the $150,150 Elevation at Hoosier Park. He also finished second in an elimination of the Metro Pace and a $59,543 division of the Nassagaweya at Mohawk. The American Ideal colt competes for connections Brittany Farms, Riverview Racing, Alagna Racing, and Jodi Siamis.
Improving into this event is Thomas Cancelliere trainee I'm Some Graduate. Debuting in mid-July, he has since made five starts, with four wins and one second. His wins have come from a division of The Stallion Series, an overnight, a division of the Pennsylvania Sires Stakes and the $50,000 consolation. Owned by John Cancelliere, I'm Some Graduate will race from post 8.
The second split of colts features Biggie, who won a split of The Stallion Series at The Meadows in 1:51.4. Trained by Ron Burke, he has won two races in six outings, with the other being in an overnight at Harrah's Philadelphia. Competing for Jerry & Theresa Silva Stables, T L P Stables, and Deo Volente Farms, rivaling him are maidens Mindtrip and Fine Diamond, with both entering off of second-place efforts. Mindtrip placed to stable-mate American Passport in the Elevation on Sept. 26, while Fine Diamond was second at 67-1 in the $225,000 New York Sires Stakes final at Yonkers Raceway. Ron Burke trains Fine Diamond for owners Burke Racing and Weaver Bruscemi, Lawrence Karr, and Panhellenic Stable. Mindtrip races for Alagna and Crawford Racing, Joe Sbrocco, John Fodera, and Tangie Massey.
The last colt division also caps the Friday program. Winner of the $85,400 Lou Babic Memorial Ideal Rocky competes from post 1. John Butenschoen trains the four-time winner in nine miles for owners William Wiswell, Jean Goehlen, and Eugene Schickwith. The Rocknroll Hanover colt's notable achievements being a second in a Metro Pace elimination and a fifth in the final. Racing Hill, another Metro Pace finalist, will neighbor Ideal Rocky on the gate. The son of Roll With Joe, owned by Tom Hill, has won two races in six tries and draw into this race off a 1:52 qualifier at Lexington. Trained by Tony Alagna, he was seventh in the Metro final, but followed that performance with a fourth in a $88,055 division of the Champlain at Mohawk.
The 11-race program slated for Friday, Oct. 2 commences at 7:00pm.