Sophomores compete in Sire Stakes Arenas
By Frank & Ray Cotolo
(H) denotes Hambletonian Eligible.
Friday night, May 17, soph colts and fillies were stacked in trotting battles featuring state-breds in two U.S. programs, while a duo of fillies each took on a field of non-eligibles in SBOA elims in Ontario.
Starting in Canada, the highly regarded Bee A Magician (H-Kadabra) won her sophomore debut with Rick Zeron aboard for trainer Richard Norman in 1:53.4 as the huge choice (our choice, too), paying $2.90 to win. The winning time mirrored her lifetime mark and the North American season’s record. She was the only eligible in the nine-filly field that raced for $25,000.
Melvin Hartman, Herb Liverman and David McDuffee own Bee A Magician.
The second $25,000 SBOA division was won by non-eligible Zorgwijk Nova, with Quiet Snow (H-Angus Hall), the only filly eligible, finishing third. The eligible was our choice.
Four distaff Pennsylvania Sires Stakes (PASS) trots, each worth $59,080, highlighted the Meadows program on May 17 and three Oaks eligibles won their contests. Melvin Hartman and RAW Equine, Inc.’s Drink The Wine (H-Andover Hall) took the second PASS episode, winning in 1:55.4 with Brett Miller in the bike.
Trained by Steven Bryden, Drink The Wine ($24.40) brushed swiftly to take the lead at three-quarters and went on to win by ½ length, with Upfrontluckycarol (H-Andover Hall) second and strongly favored Fashion Athena (H-Broadway Hall) getting third. Our choice, MC’s Diamond (H-Donato Hall) had a tough outside trip and finished seventh, distanced, at 28-1
The next eligible to win a PASS filly mile was our choice, Mistery Woman (H-Donato Hanover) with David Miller aboard. She made a huge brush to devour 7 ½ lengths and get the lead wide at the half and continued on top to win in 1:55.2.
She was a big favorite, paying $3.40 for trainer Jonas Czernyson and owners Millstream Inc., Bill Donovan, & Aldebaran Park, Inc. Lady Broadway was second and Classic Martine (H-Classic Photo) finished third.
Split four went to eligible Frau Blucher (H-Broadway Hall) in her first start of the season. From post 8, Frau Blucher stormed to the top and commanded the field to the finish where she recorded a 1:54.2 victory with Jim Morrill, Jr. up. Chris Oakes trains her for owners Hauser Bros. Racing Ent. LLC, Matt Tudisco and J & T Silva Stables, LLC.
The place spot went to Thistle Dhu (H-Donato Hanover) and third place was secured by Global Beauty. Frau Blucher paid $4.40, while our choice, Bethel Hanover (H-Donato Hanover) finished sixth at 20-1.
The evening at the Meadows began with a PASS upset, as Curtsy Hanover ($44.20) defeated the huge public choice Defiant Donato (H-Donato Hanover) in 1:54.1. Curtsy Hanover won by just a neck, getting a clean inside trip while Defiant Donato was forced to go wide at three-quarters to get a brief lead and held for second while Ruffleshaveridges was third. Jim Morrill, Jr. drove for trainer Paul Kelley and owners Kelley Racing Stable, LLC and Stable 45.
At the Meadowlands, also on May 17, a soph-trotting division for each sex was presented in the New Jersey Sires Stakes (NJSS). Smilin Eli (H-Muscles Yankee) won the colts’ split, worth $34,000, in 1:54.4. Tim Tetrick drove the Deshawn Minor-trained colt as the second public choice, paying $5.20.
Nicolas Cimino owns Smilin Eli, who followed Muscle Mountain second over as that one chased Corky and took over late in the mile. Muscle Mountain (H-Muscles Yankee) was second and his stable-mate-entry Corky (H-Muscles Yankee) got third.
In the 12-horse NJ state-bred filly event, our choice, Shared Past (Chocolatier) was the favorite, worth $36,000. Shared Past, driven by Yannick Gingras, paid $3.60, making two moves to win in 1:53.4.
One part of the entry, Vintage Oaks (H-Muscles Yankee) took second and Southwind Cocoa (Chocolatier) held on for third after a long, outside trip to the half. The $10,000 conditioned soph-trot colt event that same night at the Meadowlands included our choice, Cajole Hanover, an ineligible, that paid $10.00.
Raven Victory (H-Andover Hall) was second and Here’s Johnny (H-Deweycheatumnhowe) was third. A conditioned event for fillies carried a $12,500 purse and was won by Sina (H-Cantab Hall), for owners Moon Goddess LLC, trainer Bob Bencal and Yannick Gingras in the bike. She paid $30.60. Suzell Hanover (H-Kadabra) was second and Online Exclusive (H-Yankee Glide) was third.
Keep watching the Hambletonian Trail blog for updates and races involving eligibles through July and for live coverage from TwinSpires on Hambletonian day. Read race results at the special section archived at the Hambletonian Society web site.