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Plainridge Upset For Cigars And Port

Published: October 28, 2021 8:57 pm ET

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After missing a week due to illness, Cigars And Port bounced back in a big way after he won the $25,000 Winners-Over Handicap pacing feature at Plainridge Park on Thursday afternoon overlooked at 17-1.

Cigars And Port (Wally Watson) took a momentary lead off the gate before Hudson Phil (Jay Randall) swooped to the front and hit the quarter in 26.4. With post time favourite The Bird Dance N (Ron Cushing) settling in third, the horse train rolled down the track to the half in :54.4.

With little movement from the top three to the three-quarters, Wyatt J (Drew Campbell) joined the contenders on the outside in the last turn. When the field spun off the last turn, Watson tipped Cigars And Port out of the pocket and began urging him aggressively down the lane. As good horses do, Cigars And Port responded and overtook Hudson Phil and then held off a fast-closing Wyatt J to win by a head in 1:51.2.

It was the tenth win of the year for Cigars And Port ($37) who eclipsed six figure earnings with the win, now boasting $108,030 in the bank for owners Fox Ridge Stables and Wally Watson. Lisa Watson trains the four-year-old gelded son of So Surreal-Sweet On Art.

The second tier Winners-Over went for $22,500 and Thinkbig Dreambig ($4.60) delivered in a gate to wire effort.

Thinkbig Dreambig (Bruce Ranger) led unchallenged to the half in a tepid :56.3 when Mansome (Pat Curtain) came to call. Mansome made his way up the outside and drew to within a length of the leader by the three-quarter pole. But that was as close as he would get as Thinkbig Dreambig shifted gears and pulled away from the challenge. Down the lane the only horse close was the pocket-sitting Simple Kinda Man (Shawn Gray) who couldn't match strides as Thinkbig Dreambig turned in a fast :27.3 final panel to win by 2-1/4 lengths in 1:52.3.

Thinkbig Dreambig is owned by Brixton Medical, John Fielding, Goran Anderberg and Goran Falk. Domenico Cecere trains the winner.

The third top class of the day was the $20,000 upper-level conditioned pace that went to Acton Hanover ($17.40) after he scored his second Plainridge win of the year.

Salt Life (Brett Beckwith) flew to the quarter in :25.4 and with no opposition, continued to the half in :54.1. Acton Hanover (Kevin Switzer Jr.) was sitting second and stalked as the leader hit three-quarters in 1:22.3. Halfway around the last turn, Switzer pulled, took the lead and paced home on top by 1-1/2 lengths in 1:51.4.

Acton Hanover is owned by Burke Racing, Weaver Bruscemi and Dr. Megan Moschgot and is trained by Joe Nelson.

Driver Drew Monti was top reinsman on Thursday, adding three wins to his column. Two of those winners were trained by Jimmy Nickerson who finished the day as top conditioner.

Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Friday (Oct. 29) with post time for the first race at 2 p.m.

(Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts)

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