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Yonkers Hosts First Sunday Matinee

Published: November 9, 2014 6:03 pm ET

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Yonkers Raceway’s first of six Sunday matinees debuted with an enthusiastic -- and curious -- crowd, terrific weather and “beaucoup de chevaux.”

(That's French for ‘many horses’...the author cheated and looked).

The half-dozen, late-morning starts (first post here was 11:19 a.m. ET) began with five trotting events, each one over-sized (11, 12, 10, 10 and 10 horses, respectively), “over-distanced” (1-1/4 miles) and exported to France. There are the usual dozen races on the card.

Included in that opening quintet was the weekly trotting feature, with a vitamin-enriched dowry of $46,000 (all 12 of the Sunday races featured increased purses). Odds-on DWs NY Yank (George Brennan, $3), starting from post position No. 3, held off a pocket-sitting, 62-1 NF Happenstance (Jeff Gregory) by a length in 2:25.4 for the mile and one-quarter.

The first over-sized field trot -- pared down to 11 after a defection due to sickness -- was won by Rossini (Dan Dube, $6). From post position No. 10 in the second tier, Rossini, as the second choice, defeated 3-2 favourite Theraputic (Brennan) by a head in 2:28 for the added distance.

“It’s new for all of us, horses and drivers,” Brennan said after the second race. “It’s an experiment and hopefully it catches on. We have to try something different and I have no problem with it. Of course, I had a win and a second in the first two races, so I’m not complaining.”

(Note: Brennan finished with two wins and a trio of seconds, while Dube won thrice.)

As far as wagering went, the North American numbers were $492,926 for the dozen races, and that was with a limited exotics menu for the early races.

The French figures (again, first five races only) were just under $1.4 million Euros (1 Euro is a bit less than 1.25 U.S. dollars, so approximately $1.75 million).

The Raceway's five-program-per-week live schedule now offers first post every Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 p.m., and Sunday matinees (replacing Tuesday evenings) beginning at 11 a.m., give or take a few minutes. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily.

(Yonkers Raceway)


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