The first leg of the Beat The Heat Pacing Series was contested Saturday evening at Mohawk Racetrack, with a trio of $18,000 divisions on tap.
The Ladies Man, driven by Mike Saftic, scored a career-best clocking of 1:49.2 in the final – and fastest – division on the 13-race card. Bestinthebusiness was the first leader as he took command before the opening station in :26.2. College Major pocket-pulled his way to the front in the backstretch before being looped by The Ladies Man before the mid-way point in :54.
The Jim Ritchie trainee led past three-quarters in 1:22, before dashing away from his rivals down the stretch and scoring a comfortable win. Bestinthebusiness finished second with Thats The Life third.
Ritchie co-owns the seven-year-old son of Modern Art with Paul Ritchie and Murray Cox. The 22-time winner increased his bankroll to $338,380.
In the first division it was Silver Eagle and driver Randy Waples taking home top prize thanks to his 1:50 score. The son of Brandons Cowboy shot to the front and threw down an opening station of :26.3. Windfall Blue Chip was in the pocket with Frankies Dragon third. Oliver elected to pocket-pull before the half with Windfall Blue Chip as he was sent to the position of command at the mid-way point in :55.3.
Around the final turn, Frankies Dragon began the first-over attack with Silver Eagle in the pocket. Frankies Dragon and Windfall Blue Chip matched strides past three-quarters in 1:22.4 and continued to battle down the stretch.
Waples was able to angle his charge off the pylons and Silver Eagle made the most of his trip as he got up in the final strides to score the win. Frankies Dragon finished second, with Windfall Blue Chip third.
Trained by Ben Wallace for Holland Racing Stable, Silver Eagle increased his career bankroll to $335,604. The five-year-old gelding enjoyed his second victory of the season and 22nd lifetime. He paid $11.80 to win.
Rhombus provided the 7/2 minor upset as he earned his second victory of the season in the second division for Scott Zeron.
Astute was quickest to the front before the opening panel in :27.1. Ciona Bromach was in the pocket with Rhombus sitting third. Rhombus didn’t sit long as Zeron angled him out of third and to the front before the half in :1:22.4. From there, the five-year-old son of The Panderosa led past three-quarters in 1:22.4 and fought off all challengers to earn his tenth career score for trainer Tony Alagna. Astute finished second, with Ciona Bromach third.
Owned by Cheap Speed Stable, VIP Internet Stable LLC and Minisink Farms LLC, Rhombus increased his bankroll to $142,614.
The series is for four-year-olds and older that are non-winners of $25,000 in 2013 as of May 31 (winners over $100,000 in 2012 are not eligible).
The second $18,000 leg of the Beat The Heat Pacing Series continues Saturday, May 29 with the $40,000 final slated for Saturday, July 6.
To view results for Saturday's card of harness racing, click the following link: Saturday Results – Mohawk Racetrack.