BY FRANK DRUCKER, Publicity Director, Empire City @ Yonkers Raceway
YONKERS, NY, Saturday, February 4, 2017—Down-the-roaders Allerage Star (Andy Miller, $3.80) and Somewhere in L A (Matt Kakaley, $36.60) shared the Saturday night marquee, winning Yonkers Raceway’s co-featured $45,000 Open Handicaps.
Allerage Star—odds-on favorite from post position No. 5—made short work of the week’s featured trot. Benefitting from a scratch directly inside of her, she went the distance (:28.3, :58.3, 1:27.2, 1:55.3). Longshot Military Blue (Brent Holland) chased from the pocket before losing contact, while Rock of Cashel (Scott Zeron) wound up a three-hole second.
The margin, two lengths into the lane, was the same at the wire. Springbank Sam N (Jordan Stratton), Dot Dot Dot Dash (Steve Smith) and season-debuting, eight-hole-assigned Hemi Seelster (Jason Bartlett) settled for the remainder.
For Allerage Star, a 5-year-old daughter of Angus Hall trained by Julie Miller for co-owners Little E LLC, Jason Settlemoir, David Stolz and Arthur Geiger, it was her first win in three seasonal starts. The exacta (two wagering choices) paid $13.40, with the triple returning $58.50.
Saturday’s pacing feature saw eight-baller Somewhere in L A make the lead from Roland N Rock (Stratton) just past a nifty :26.4 opening quarter-mile. After a :55.4 intermission, slight 2-1 choice Long Live Rock (Dan Dube) moved from fifth.
He closed in nearing the 1:24.4 three-quarters, but ’L A’ maintained a short lead in and out of the final turn. The leader was tenacious, holding off Long Live Rock by a neck in 1:52.4. Caviart Luca (George Brennan) was a second-up third, with ‘Roland’ and Givenupdreaming (Bartlett) came away with the minor moolah.
For sixth choice Somewhere in L A, a 6-year-old Somebeachsomewhere gelding trained by Rich Banca for co-owners D’Elegance Stable IX, Carmen Ianncone, TLP and Gandolfo Stables, it was his fourth win in five ’17 tries. The exacta paid $164, with the triple returning $786.
Saturday also featured an ‘unhit’ Pick 5, so Monday’s gimmick begins with a carryover of $3,283.05 (50-cent base wager, Monday comprising races 7 through 11).