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Heyden's 'Rooney' Notes

Published: June 1, 2011 4:30 pm ET

Last Comment: June 2, 2011 5:52 am ET | 1 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

When the $307,734 Art Rooney Pace heads to post on Saturday, June 4 at Yonkers Raceway, an undefeated filly will have her nose on the gate.

See You At Peelers ' connections are making a bold move by entering her to contest the 'Rooney,' which will be her first race against male competition.

This is certainly not first time that the 'so-called' male superiority has been tested. Harness racing statistician Bob 'Hollywood' Heyden has taken a look back at how the great ladies of the sulky sport have fared against the boys.

According to the Heyden, the 1986 Cane Pace filly entrant H H Shadow came up short for Jody Stafford against the boys in the Triple Crown event. The race marked the very last time that a female hit the board in the Cane Pace, but in doing so she eclipsed the third-place finish by the filly Tarport Hap in the 'Cane' back in 1975.

Lightening struck twice on the trotting side of things when the boys got their heads handed to them in the1995 and 1996 editions of the Yonkers Trot, which were won by a pair of great fillies, C R Kay Suzie and Continentalvictory, respectively.

In 1974, the great Handle With Care won her first 24 starts. It was only when she tried to flex some muscle against the boys when her streak came to an end, in the Prix D'Ete at Blue Bonnets in Montreal.

Miss Easy tried to charm the boys in the 1991 edition of the Meadowlands Pace eliminations, but suffered a break and lost any chance at making the final. Undaunted and skipping the charm part, she came back with some female vengeance to win the consolation. In doing so she defeated none other than Cambest in the process.

Some other notables that challenged the myth of the male dominance on the pacing side were Fan Hanover, the only filly to win the Little Brown Jug (1981), Toy Poodle and Tender Loving Care. The filly Areba Areba tried her hand in the Woodrow Wilson, as did Hazel Hanover and Courageous Lady in the Meadowlands Pace. All three suffered defeats.

It seems that on the trotting side the fillies have fared somewhat better against the boys than their pacing counterparts, but See You At Peelers may be the filly to show the boys a thing or two.

Her emboldened owners have added much excitement to the Rooney, and See You At Peelers' very presence in the event makes the 2011 renewal of the Art Rooney another instance of a courageous gal trying to take her place among the boys in competition at the highest level.

(With files from Bob Heyden and the NY Standardbred Owners Association)

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June 2, 2011 - 5:52 amCountess Adios won the Cane

Countess Adios won the Cane in 1960 over colts like Betting Time, Muncy Hanover and Bright Knight. The race was contested at a mile and a sixteenth in those days. Countess Adios also beat the colts in the Messenger.


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