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Yonkers hosts $1.8 million NY Night of Champions

Yonkers hosts $1.8 million NY Night of Champions
Sunday, September 29, 2013 - by Frank Drucker, publicity director, Yonkers Raceway

Yonkers, NY --- Yonkers Raceway on Saturday night hosted the richest night of racing in the state, the 24th edition of the New York Night of Champions. The $1.8 million event offered eight, $225,000 New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) Finals for 2- and 3-year-olds of both sexes and on both gaits.
Here's the chronologically compiled skinny:

Crawford Farms 2-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Trot: Flyhawk El Durado (Mark MacDonald, $10.60) took it the house from post position No. four (:29.2; 1:00.2; 1:29.3; 1:58) for a fifth consecutive NYSS win. His dead heat dance partner of a week ago here, Credit Fashion (Brian Sears), chased this night from the pocket, but missed by a neck as the 2-5 choice. Cash Me Out (Mickey McGivern) rallied from third from the eight hole.

The second choice in the betting, Flyhawk El Durado, a s son of Conway Hall owned by Martin Scharf and trained by Mark Ford, is now six-for-nine this season. The exacta paid $14.60, with the triple returning $108.50.

"You never worry about him trotting out of there, and that's a big help," MacDonald said. "He felt good in the lane."

Allerage Farm 2-Year-Old Filly Trot: Late-season scourge Market Rally (John Cummings Jr., $10.40), from post No. five, did her damage from third-over. She picked up division leader Maud Blue Chip (Brin Sears) by a neck in 1:59.1. Maud Blue Chip, the 7-10 favorite, went first up-and over Flyhawk Falina (Dan Daley) before the three-quarters (:29, :59, 1:29.2), but could not stave-off the winner. Exotic Form (Jason Bartlett), stuck in when her entrymate quit on the lead, rallied for third.

For third choice, Market Rally, a Cash Hall miss (sold as a yearling for $7,500 at the Morrisville, N.Y. Sale), co-owned by trainer Megan Wilson and Johnny Yoder, it was her fourth win in 10 '13 tries. The exacta paid $23.20, with the triple returning $47.40.

"I just waited for the dust to settle and let her do her thing," Cummings said.

"We thought she was a just a good filly from a good family," Wilson said, adding the Breeders Crown may be next on her dance card.

Winbak Farm 2-Year-Old Filly Pace: Sweetnsinful (Jimmy Whittemore) tried taking no prisoners (:27.1, 56.2, 1:26), including stuffing a fumbly gaited Ali Blue (Jim Morrill Jr.) into a three-hole. The two-hole was locked up by Bettor Business (Dan Dube), and thatg wound up serving her well.

From post No. two, Bettor Business ducked inside, getting to the winner and prevailed by three-quarter lengths in a maiden-breaking 1:54.2. Ali Blue, as the 4-5 choice, was third.

As the fourth betting choice, Bettor Business, a daughter of Bettor's Delight ($42,000 @ Harrisburg, Pa.), co-owned (as Triple D Stables) by trainer Scott DiDomenico and JFE Enterprises, returned $27.40 (partnered with Scandalicious) for that initial win in nine seasons tries. The exacta paid $138.50, with the triple returning $124.00.

Stirling Brook Farms 3-Year-Old Filly Trot: The aptly named and odds-on Bouncing Bax (Jason Bartlett, $2.70), who began the season losing her first nine races, romped to a fifth consecutive win (:28.4, :59, 1:27.2, 1:56.2), From post No. four, she took over from Barn Babe (John Cummings Jr.), then ran away and hid.

The margin was fourth lengths in a life-best effort. Second went to Royal Malinda (Dan Daley), with Alphadoodle (Mark MacDonald) third.

Bouncing Bax was a four length winner

Bouncing Bax, a Credit Winner lass ($30,000 @ Harrisburg, Pa.) trained by Jim Raymer for Harbor Racing Stable, the resume is five wins in 14 seasons starts. The exacta paid $16.40, with the triple returning $47.00.

Morrisville College Equine Institute 3-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Trot: Crazy About Pat (Eric Goodell, $8.50) could not have asked for a better setup. From post No. four, he was perched in the pocket as E L Rocket (George Brennan) dealt with the first-up, 7-5 choice Tirade Hanover (Jim Morrill Jr.) through fractions of :27.4, :57.2 and 1:26.3.

Crazy About Pat edged off the cones, moved past Tirade Hanover and won by one-half length in 1:55, with E L Rocket third.

The fourth choice, Crazy About Pat, a homebred so n of Crazed owned by (co-breeder) Patricia Stable and trained by Noel Daley, is now eight-for-18 this season. The exacta paid $20.20, with the triple returning $67.00.

"I raced him earlier in the season, and I was very fortunate to get the drive back," Goodell said. "I had the choice to go in and out, and things worked very well. He's a talented colt."

Genesee Valley Farm 2-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Pace: What can we say about He's Watching?

Try this: An eighth win in as many starts, a 1:52.2 track record for his weight class -- also matching a world record -- after a 6 -length beat-down. Leaving from the pole with Jim Morrill Jr. in tow, He's Watching worked around barn buddy Major Trick (Jason Bartlett), then set sails through stations of :28.1, :56.1 and 1:24.4 in equal halves of :56.1 for the 1-9 favorite, after some fast math.

He's Watching lives up to all the superlatives that describe him Major Trick third.

Big Boy Dreams (Brian Sears) was a first-up second, with
He's Watching ($2.20), a son of American Ideal ($3,000 @ Harrisburg) co-owned by (trainer) Dave Menary, Brad Gray and Michael Guerrero, has now earned $291,722. The exacta paid $6.80.

"I don't where the bottom is," Morrill said. "He's a small colt, but he doesn't race like one. I was just letting him cruise."

"This is the icing for him," Menary said. "He's been life-changing (experience) for me. He's probably done for the season, so while the others are down at Lexington, the Breeders Crown and the Matron Stakes, we can get a head start toward next season."

Cameo Hills Farm 3-Year-Old Filly Pace: The track record-holder for this division, Social Scene (George Brennan, $10.20) did her damage as per usual ... from off the pace. After Winbak Heavenly (Jim Marohn Jr.) and defending champ Summertime Lea (Morrill Jr.) slugged it out early (:27.1, :55.4), Social Scene -- from post No. six -- went up and after the leader.

She zipped by the 4-5 favorite, Summertime Lea -- who was bothered by a first-turn breaker -- and opened by five lengths while passing the 1:23.1 three-quarters. The margin was a half-dozen at the wire, in 1:53, with the longshots Cheyenne Miriam (Andy Miller), Springforth (Larry Stalbaum) and Ballineen (Brian Sears) upping the exotics.

The second choice, Social Scene, an American Ideal ma'am ($37,000 @ Lexington. Ky.) co-owned by West Wins Stable and Steve Calhoun and trained by Casie Colemarn, has won half of her 14 '13 tries. The exacta paid $214.50, the triple returned $2,198.000 and the superfecta paid $76,990.00 (for a $2 payout; a 10-cent ticket paid $3,849.50). Summertime Lea faded to seventh.

"When she's right, there's no filly that can hold her out," Brennan said. "She's has some breathing issues, but she was sharp tonight."

Blue Chip Farms 3-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Pace: A third consecutive "lonely horse" to end the sire stakes, as a 3-10 choice, Fool Me Once (Brian Sears, $2.70) gave nothing else a shot. From post No. five it was effortless through fractions of :27.2, :56.2 and 1:24.3, to a mile timed in 1:51.3).

The separation was 8- lengths at the end, with Bettor Than You (Eric Goodell) second at 42-1, just ahead of a 30-1

Mike Lizzi photos

Fool Me Once won by 8-1/2 lengths shot, Framed Art (Mark MacDonald).

For Fool Me Once, a son of Art Major ($70,000 @ Harrisburg) co-owned by (trainer) Mark Austin and Daniel Smith, it was his 10th win in 14 seasons starts (14-for-24, lifetime, earnings of more than $612,000). The exacta paid $42.40, with the triple returning $313.50.

"He's a cut above the sire stakes horses," Sears said. "He was comfortable and I get let him go on with it."

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