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There's No Place Like Home

Published: October 6, 2020 4:38 pm ET

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Pilgrims Tide sure likes the home cooking at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono.

Pilgrims Tide had finished first and second in his last two starts at Pocono, but he did not fare as well in his subsequent excursions to Yonkers Raceway. He returned to 'the mountain oval' on Tuesday afternoon (Oct. 6), and during the last half of the track's $12,800 claiming-handicap trotting feature he left his foes in the red dust. Pilgrims Tide went on to taste victory in a new life's mark of 1:54.1.

Several horses took a shot at the victorious Muscle Massive gelding during early fractions of :27.2 and :56.3, but none succeeded. Pilgrims Tide and driver Simon Allard were all alone on the lead past the half. They spun off three quarters in 1:24.2 and coasted home to victory by seven and one-quarter lengths. Shane Tritton trains the winner of $175,657 for owner Nicholas Catalano.

Another Muscle Massive gelding, the sophomore Focus Pocus, got in a solid prep race for his $25,000 Pennsylvania Fair Sire Stakes Championship this coming Monday at the Meadows. He went to the lead and held off the field in 1:55.4 in a $10,400 trotting contest. Focus Pocus finished first and second in his last two fair starts against all-time PA Fair trot record-holder Manhattanup No Ice, and finished third in a recent Keystone Classic division behind Amigo Volo. Focus Pocus looks to be in prime form for his owners, trainer Linda Schadel and driver Tony Schadel.

Trainer Jim Ray's stable has sent out only 27 starters in 2020 and has produced four wins, but Ray’s a conditioner to watch out for, as a $2 bet on each his charges would have returned a 526 per cent profit. Tied with Tom Wine II as the only trainers with three $50+ horses at the meet, Ray’s latest 'bomber' was Frac, who came from ninth and last off a hotly-contested pace for driver Kevin Wallis to get up late and pay $98.60 to his very scattered $2 win backers. Ray co-owns the winner of $259,615 with David Wisser.

Anthony Napolitano led all drivers with three victories during the Tuesday afternoon card.

(With files from PHHA / Pocono)

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