Primo Uomo, Credit List Upset In Batavia Opens

Primo Uomo
Published: February 1, 2024 08:20 pm EST

Steady rain and an off track threw a curveball at bettors at Batavia Downs on Thursday (Feb. 1) as many favourites failed to fire allowing some bountiful payoffs to prevail. That included both featured races, where photos were needed to decide the winners.

In the $20,270 Open I Handicap Pace, despite having post seven, Primo Uomo (Jim McNeight Jr.) went gate to wire to win after an exciting stretch drive. 

Primo Uomo was sent to the front and paced unchallenged through quarters of :27.2, :57 and 1:25.4. Halfway through the last turn, the tripped-out The Bird Dance N (Brett Beckwith) pulled to advance and that left Ideal Artillery (Drew Monti) a path to dip into the passing lane. As the horses headed for home, Primo Uomo paced down the center of the lane, flanked by Ideal Artillery and The Bird Dance N, and held both off all the way to the wire to win by a head in 1:55.2. 

Overlooked at 7-1, Primo Uomo returned $17.60 to win. David Dewhurst trains the four-year-old Heston Blue Chip gelding for owners Chris Lawton and Dale Lawton. 

Then in the $20,270 Open I Handicap Trot, Credit List (Kyle Cummings) was similarly released at 9-1 and paid a premium for those who backed him. 

Credit List got away third and watched as E Street (Jim Morrill Jr.) and Big Box Hanover (Larry Stalbaum) engaged in a slugfest. After leaving side by side, E Street took the lead, but Big Box Hanover settled in the breeze and matched strides through fractions of :28.1, :58 and 1:28.3. As the pair passed that last station, Big Box Hanover folded as Special Prosecutor (Kevin Cummings) and I Got The Looks (Dan Yetman) tipped three-wide around him. In the final bend and under siege again by Special Prosecutor, E Street continued his valiant grind and took his lead into the stretch. When they straightened out, Credit List found room in the passing lane while I Got The Looks was flying on the outside. All three had a shot coming to the wire, but Credit List took the shortest route and won by a mere nose in 1:59.4. 

Credit List returned $21.80 for the upset. The nine-year-old Credit Winner gelding is owned by Linda Dellheim and trained by Kevin Reynolds Jr. 

Brett Beckwith, Jim Morrill Jr. and Kyle Cummings all had three driving wins while Shawn McDonough and David Russo both scored two training victories. 

Live harness racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Monday, Feb. 5 at 3 p.m. and the card will feature the third round of the Western New York Trackmaster Series for pacers. Also, there will be a $526 carryover in the Jackpot Super Hi-5 pentafecta in the 15th race. 

(With files from Batavia Downs)

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