Percys Z Tam Takes Batavia Open

Published: November 14, 2020 09:25 pm EST

Percys Z Tam fought off a pair of challenges in progress to winning the $8,500 Open I Handicap Pace at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Nov. 14).

When the gate opened, no one left and they headed around the first turn in post-position order. Seeing the opportunity, driver Jim Morrill Jr. tipped Percys Z Tam from third and took the front by the quarter in :28 and from there he controlled the remainder of the contest. After coasting to the half at his own pace, the competition then headed his way as Tullow N and Stratosphere came in the outer flow in the third turn in pursuit of the leader.

Heading towards three-quarters, Percys Z Tam turned back the outside threat but Long Train Runnin, who was tripping out to this point, was poised to take his best shot. That came at the top of the stretch where McDonough pulled Long Train Runnin and started to drive hard. He made up ground all the way to the wire but could not get by Percys Z Tam, who hung on by a neck to win in 1:54.1.

It was the seventh victory of the year for Percys Z Tam ($6.50) and it pushed his earnings to $59,235 for owner Mike Torcello. Gerry Sarama trains the winner.

In the $7,500 Open II pace, Thor De Vie grabbed the lead at the quarter, turned back a strong third quarter challenge from Barry Hanover and then out-paced the pocket sitting McSpidey down the lane to capture his sixth win of the year in 1:55.2.

Thor De Vie ($3.10) is owned by his trainer Jim Graham along with Lee Winters, Paul Tandlmayer and Giuseppe Micchia. Dave McNeight III sat in the sulky.

Dave McNeight III had three other winners on the card giving him the driving Grand Slam. Besides Thor De Vie, he also won with Myell’s Rockstar (1:55.3, $10.20), Falcons Luke (1:59.3, $12.00) and Charmbo Orbit (1:55.4, $41.20).

Another winning combination was driver Jim Morrill Jr., trainer Gerry Sarama and owner Mike Torcello who sent three winners to post Saturday night.

Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Nov. 18) with post time at 5 p.m. (EST). And since there was no Pick-5 winner on Saturday, there is a carry over of $1,157 and a guaranteed pool of $5,000 for the Pick-5 on Wednesday. The pool is part of the United States Trotting Association’s Strategic Wagering Program and as such, free program pages for races one through five will be available on the USTA and Batavia Downs websites early next week.

(Batavia Downs)

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