In Friday’s $9,000 Open Handicap Trot, Hello Carlo ($10.20), a Carry The Message gelding out of the Supergill mare Last Turn, won in a season’s best 2:00.2 to register his second win of the year for owner Mario Caponi of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio
Capably driven by reinsman Russell Swartz, Hello Carlo leaving from Post 4, settled in fifth in the field of seven. First over by the half, Hello Carlo and Swartz made a strong backside brush to pass tiring leaders as they hit the three-quarter pole with the lead in 1:30.2. A :30 last quarter-mile put the winner 1-3/4 lengths ahead of second place finisher Carolina Raider and driver Troy Boring. A Work In Progress (Ken Holliday) came in third.
“Front end speed wasn’t holding up tonight,” said Swartz. “Being first over really wasn’t a bad place to be.”
Trained by Larry Clabaugh, the $4,500 share of the winning purse put Hello Carlo’s season bankroll at $13,470, and $94,620 lifetime.
In the $9,000 Fillies and Mares Open Handicap Pace, Pembroke Primo, ($9.40) a six-year-old Ditch Em offspring, rallied from last place to win her third Open in a row in 1:59.2 for owners John Cummings, Sr. and Mark Jakubik.
Masterfully driven by regular driver Kevin Cummings, Pembroke Primo used a :29 last quarter-mile to edge second place finisher Parking Place (Russell Swartz) by one-half length. Sun Belle Perfect (Ron Beback, Jr.) came in the show spot.
The $4,500 share of the winning purse put Pembroke Primo’s season bankroll at $15,660, and $211,344 lifetime.
The $26,000 Niatross Final is Saturday’s headliner with Runrun Big Eagle (Russell Swartz) the 5-2 early morning favourite.