Vandiemen Bluechip (Huntsville), sent off at odds of 49-1, was a first-over, 1:54.2 harness racing winner of a $156,600 New York Sire Stakes clash for rookie pacing colts and geldings at MGM Yonkers Raceway.
Driven by George Brennan, Vandiemen Bluechip sped out from post five and held the early lead but would yield to Boston Rocks and driver Jason Bartlett before the 27 second opening quarter. Boston Rocks would then give way to sit in the pocket behind 1-9 favorite Huntingforchrome, who had Joe Bongiorno in the bike, beyond that marker.
Huntingforchrome, coming off back-to-back victories in the sire stakes at Saratoga and Vernon and a tally against open company in the Kindergarten Series at the Meadowlands, kept control through middle-half fractions of 56.1 and 1:24.1, but Brennan put Vandiemen Bluechip in motion first-over passing three-quarters and came with a quick brush that carried him into the lead on the rim on the final bend. Ameritric and driver Marcus Miller tracked the cover, which trapped Boston Rocks on the inside and shuffled him back to fourth behind the fading Huntingforchrome.
In the stretch Vandiemen Bluechip had the jump on his pursuers, and although Boston Rocks was able to angle off the cones to get around Huntingforchrome and then dove back to the inside in pursuit of Vandiemen Bluechip, Vandiemen Bluechip was able to hold sway to the wire, prevailing by a neck. Boston Rocks had to settle for second, followed by Ameritric, Howlenthehills (Matt Kakaley) and Darius (Mark MacDonald).
VANDIEMEN BLUECHIP REPLAY
Mark Capone trains Vandiemen Bluechip for owners Samir Tawil, Paul Kautz, Nathan Fullmer and Alexander Henn. Bred by Blue Chip Bloodstock and Dan Fisher, Vandiemen Bluechip has two wins, a second and two thirds from seven outings and has now earned $106,444. He paid $101.50 to win and was atop a $691.00 exacta and a $7,869.00 trifecta.
That big upset by Vandiemen Blue Chip also was the catalyst that led to Tuesday night’s Pick 5 wager not being hit. As a result, when live racing resumes Thursday (August 24), there will be an $8,266.59 carryover and a $20,000 guaranteed pool in the sequence.
The guarantee in the Pick 5 is being offered as part of the United States Trotting Association’s Strategic Wagering Program. Free past performances for the Pick 5, courtesy of TrackMaster, will be available here. The Pick 5, which begins in race five, has a takeout rate of 20 percent.
A trio of $20,000 New York Excelsior “A” Series races also took place. Bartlett won the two non-wagering division held prior to the start of the pari-mutuel program, tallying with Escape To America (by American Idealand bred by owners John Darrah and Lawrence Keethe in 1:56 for trainer Deborah Daguet and with Spectacular Plus (by Huntsville and bred by co-owner/trainer Gary Messenger and co-owner Kenneth Weckstein) in 1:56.1.
Pop It (by Huntsville and bred by Kathryn and M.K. Weed) captured the Excelsior “A” Series event on the betting card, prevailing in 1:55.3 for MacDonald, trainer Ray Schnittker and owners Schnittker Arnold, Country Club Acres, Joe Sbrocco and Ted Gewertz. Pop It returned $2.90 to win as the favorite and led an $8.70 exacta and a $69.50 trifecta.
This was the final regular season stop at MGM Yonkers Raceway on the New York Sire Stakes schedule, but the oval will host the $1.8 million New York Sire Stakes Day of Champions to honor the best 2- and 3-year-olds in the state on Saturday, September 9. That blockbuster program also includes the $1 million MGM Yonkers International Trot and two six-figure invitationals. Post time for that special card is noon.
MGM Yonkers Raceway is currently racing on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights with post time at 7 p.m. (EDT).
For complete race results, click here: US Trotting results.
From Yonkers Raceway
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