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Ladies' Night At Batavia Downs

Published: November 6, 2019 9:30 pm ET

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A pair of distaff Open Paces topped the card on Wednesday night (Nov. 6) at Batavia Downs, and both winners fittingly came from barns of female trainers.

In the $12,500 Open I Handicap for fillies and mares, Protect Blue Chip (Billy Davis Jr.) got away fifth while Blue Bell Bonnie (Dave McNeight III) and HP Sissy (Drew Monti) battled for front supremacy in a speedy :27.2. Davis pulled first-over with Protect Blue Chip and brought Gias Surreal (John Cummings Jr.) in the flow.

Positions grew tight as the race reached three-quarters in 1:25.3, with the top four horses pacing in a bunch — and it didn’t get any easier down the lane. With a mad rush to the wire, Blue Bell Bonnie, HP Sissy, Protect Blue Chip and Gias Surreal all within a head of each other. Protect Blue Chip got the slightest advantage to win by a nose in a blanket finish in 1:54.4.

It was the seventh win of the year and a new seasonal mark for Protect Blue Chip ($18.00), who is owned by Vogel and Wags Nags Stable, Jack Rice and Adelphi Bloodstock. Maria Rice trains the winner.

Then, in the $11,000 Open II Handicap for fillies and mares, Lady London (Ray Fisher Jr.) went a mile that could have gotten her the top prize in the main event. After leaving sharply from post four in :27.1, Lady London led at every station by a gapped advantage that grew as the race progressed. After hitting three-quarters in 1:24.1, Fisher let Lady London pace home of her own volition and she stretched out to a 5-3/4 length win in 1:54.1.

It was also the seventh win of the year for Lady London ($5.30), who is owned by VHF Racing. Trainer Sabrina Shaw had a double on the card.

John Cummings Jr. and Billy Davis Jr. were the hot drivers on Wednesday, each scoring three victories. Kevin Cummings joined Shaw in the trainer ranks with two wins.

Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday (Nov. 8) with post time at 6 p.m.

(Batavia Downs)

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