It was just last week that Batavia Downs set its own handle bar higher after seeing $340,602 pass through betting portals both at the track and at simulcast outlets.
That total became the highest on record since Western Regional Off Track Betting reopened the Downs in 2002. However on Monday -- only one week later -- that record was broken again after $348,205 was wagered on the very competitive third leg card made up of 12 divisions of Western New York Pop-Up Series participants that put on quite a show on the track.
The $9,000 Trackmaster 78 pace class was led by Faithful Desire (Kevin Cummings), who flexed her muscle as the only mare among the field of seven.
Faithful Desire tracked Catch A Lefty A (Dan Yetman) from third as the leader set quarters of :28.4 and :58.2. It was at that second station that Cummings tipped Faithful Desire into the breeze and blew right to the front before they got halfway through turn three. From there, Faithful Desire opened up a 3-1/2 length lead by three-quarters and extended that margin to six at the top of the stretch. From there, the mare cruised home under wraps to a 6-1/4 length victory in 1:55.4.
It was the fifth win in the last six starts for Faithful Desire ($3.20) at Batavia Downs going back to last year. Eva Saintcross owns the Shawn McDonough trained daughter of Real Desire- Faith Ann.
Cummings finished the day with a total of three wins in the bike.
The fastest $9,000 Trackmaster 77 trot of the day was registered by Seven Credits (Drew Monti), who pulled off a major upset at 25-1.
Seven Credits got away tardy and was in arrears by 7-1/4 lengths to Windsun Missile (Keith Kash) who was merrily rolling along at the half in :59. As the race moved past the five-eighths, Cash N Chrome (Jim McNeight, Jr.) shifted to the outside and provided live cover for Seven Credits, who followed intently as the pair gained ground on the leader. Cash N Chrome took the lead from Windsun Missile going by the three-quarters and Seven Credits continued to make up ground before drawing even with Cash N Chrome in mid-stretch. From there Seven Credits had the momentum and out-trotted Cash N Chrome to the line and won by a neck in 1:59.4.
Seven Credits ($52.50) is owned by Jennifer Signor and is trained by Jason Signor.
The fourth leg of the Western New York Pop-Up Series will be held next Monday (Feb. 13) with the finals and consolations scheduled for the following Monday (Feb. 20). The finals will offer purses ranging from $12,000 to $18,000 while the consolation races will go for between $7,000 to $10,000. Spots in both will be secured by the top money earners in each Trackmaster category.
Driver Ray Fisher, Jr. also had a hot hand on Monday getting a hat trick of his own during the afternoon.
When live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Thursday (Feb. 9) at 3 p.m. there will be a $300 carryover in the Jackpot Super Hi-5 Pentafecta which will be available in race 12.
That's very unusual for a track to set an all-time wagering record on a Monday rather than a Friday or a Saturday, but it can't hurt that Yonkers, another NY track, runs its best racing card of the week on Monday nights.