NYSS Sophomore Trotters Head To Vernon

R Melina winning at Vernon Downs
Published: May 23, 2024 06:51 pm EDT

Vernon Downs will play host to two divisions of New York Sire Stakes (NYSS) for three-year-old trotting fillies and three divisions for three-year-old trotting colts and geldings on Monday, May 27.

R Melina (Post 4, Tyler Buter) is the 3-2 morning line favourite in the $59,200 USD first division for the fillies. The daughter of Chapter Seven is trained by John Butenschoen. A career winner of eight races from 13 starts, she is coming off a NYSS victory in her season's debut at Yonkers Raceway on Monday. 

The reigning divisional champion, Senorita Palema (Post 3), will make her sophomore debut in the $58,100 second filly division for trainer/driver Ake Svanstedt, who will also send out another Chapter Seven filly in Honorable Way (Post 2). Scott Zeron will pick up the catch-drive on the latter filly, who was a runner-up when making her first start of the year in the NYSS leg at Yonkers. The Svanstedt trainees are the 3-2 co-favourites on the morning line.

Super Duper Cooper (Post,1 Jason Bartlett) is the 2-1 morning line favourite in the $39,233 first division for the boys. John Butenschoen trains the gelding by E L Titan who is two-for-two to launch his sophomore campaign. He won just once as a freshman, taking an Excelsior Series division in his first Vernon Downs appearance last August, but still banked more than $100,000 competing in the state-bred stakes program.
Trained by Ray Schnittker, Victor Laszlo (Post 1, Mark MacDonald) is the 2-1 early favourite in the $39,233 second division for colts and geldings.  After a winless freshman season, the Chapter Seven colt won his first four of five sophomore starts at Pocono Downs.

Trainer George Ducharme will send out Keep Asking (Post 1, Tyler Buter) as the 2-1 morning line favourite in the $39,233 third division for male trotters. The Chapter Seven colt made his season's debut last week in the Bunker Hill Trot at Plainridge Park, where he won the Massachusetts Sire Stakes championship last year to cap off a six-for-11 rookie campaign.

Vernon Downs' 11-race Memorial Day matinee starts at 12:15 p.m.

(With files from Vernon Downs; Photo of R Melina winning on May 20 at Yonkers Raceway)

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