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Movie Idol Springs Upset In Max Hempt Elim

Published: May 14, 2011 10:20 pm ET

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At 26-1, Movie Idol made a late rally on the outside to win Saturday night’s $50,000 elimination race for the Max Hempt Memorial Pace at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. The race set the field of nine for the Hempt, Pocono’s traditional showcase for three-year-old colts and geldings, which will be held on Saturday, May 21.

Leaving from post position No. 7 in a field of 10, Movie Idol, driven by Corey Callahan for trainer Shaun Callahan, sat off the pace early as Danas Sharp Smart took the early lead. Callahan set the three-year-old colt in motion on the back stretch behind cover, and he kicked to the outside in the stretch as the top two horses, Danas Sharp Smart and Custard The Dragon, both went off-stride. Movie Idol, sired by I am A Fool, avoided that trouble and out-paced Vegas Rusty to the line to win in 1:52.4, a new career-best time. Vegas Rusty settled for second while Smile A Little, who was interfered with before the start of the race and had all wagers on him refunded, still managed to get the show.

With nine spots open for the $250,000 final, only the last-place finisher was eliminated, meaning that Danas Sharp Smart, who came into the race on a five-race winning streak, was knocked out of the final after being placed from ninth to 10th by the Pocono judges for causing interference following his break at the top of the stretch. In addition to the top three, the others reaching the final include Smile A Little (fourth), Prana (fifth), Recless Ric (sixth), Pan From Nantucket (seventh), Sharp West Hanover (eighth) and Custard The Dragon (ninth).

In other action on Saturday night, Dave Palone drove Vintage Master to a sizzling win in the $60,000 Open pace. The five-year-old stallion from the Jimmy Takter barn, making his second start of the year, corralled pacesetting St Elmo Hero with a first-over move in the stretch to win by one and a half lengths in 1:49, the fastest time in the Pocono meet so far. Legal Litigator picked up the show.

(Pocono Downs)

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