by Brian J. Mazurek, for Buffalo Raceway
HAMBURG, N.Y. --- China Dream is known for his late closing speed but a change in tactics paid off for him in Buffalo Raceway's $10,000 Open Pace on Saturday night (Feb. 25) by beating Itsonlyrocknroll A by 1-3/4 lengths in 1:55.4 over the good track.
In an uncharacteristic move, China Dream (Shawn Gray) fired off the gate and had to go three-wide to grab the lead as Gallant Major and Thunderbolt Jaxon played hard ball to the opening quarter.
After setting splits of 28.3, 57.3 and 1:26.4, China Dream ($8.40) opened up a commanding four length advantage turning for home and cruised to the throttled down victory over the favored Itsonlyrocknroll A (Larry Stalbaum). Knocking Around (David McNeight III) took the show position.
Co-owned by trainer Maria Rice and Jack Rice, China Dream (If I Can Dream-China Art) is a 6-year-gelding that has earned $14,620 in 2017 and $187,293 lifetime.
Gray had four victories in the bike with Stalbaum and McNeight III scoring triples. Trainers Kimberly Asher and Gerry Sarama each notched a double.
Racing will return on Wednesday evening at 5 p.m. with a 12-race program scheduled. There will be a carryover of $2,347 Pick-5 which begins in the second race.
For more information including upcoming promotions, the latest news, results and race replays, go to www.buffaloraceway.com