Napolitano Dominates Sunday Card At Pocono

Published: June 23, 2024 10:46 pm EDT

It was the “George And Dean Show” on Sunday, June 23 at Pocono Downs at Mohegan Pennsylvania, with the track’s all-time leading driver George Napolitano Jr. visiting the winner's circle five times, four times with horses trained by Dean Eckley, including in both $22,603 featured paces.

The faster of the high-priced featured claimers was Shoobee Doo A, taking revenge on A Fair Ol Dance N's ending of his three-race win streak last week by defeating that rival in 1:49.1, a clocking that equalled the 2024 local seasonal standard of Da Delightful and Big Skewy N and also gave the horse a lifetime best. Shoobee Doo A had to go a :26 quarter to clear his archrival for the lead, then put up middle fractions of :54.1 and 1:21.2. A Fair Ol Dance N got a fair chance at his opponent in the lane but came up a half length shy of the altered son of Shoobees Place, who was claimed for $40,000 USD out of his last start by owner William Hartt.

Changing hands after his victory, though, was the other Napolitano/Eckley feature winner, Winbak Willy T. The son of Art Major, owned by Kathleen Napolitano for this event, refused to let anyone get by him through monstrous fractions of :26, :53.2 and 1:21.3, then pulled away to win by 2-1/2 lengths, lowering his record to 1:50.2 at age 10.

Napolitano, who has had 16 wins in the last four cards he has been part of (five and four at Philly on Thursday and Friday, respectively, then two here yesterday before tonight’s five-bagger), moved closer in second to meet leader Matt Kakaley. Eckley, also already second in his standings, narrowed Jeff Cullipher’s lead with his quadruple.

In a $19,178 race for two-year-old trotting males, another hot pairing as of late, driver Jim Marohn Jr. and trainer/owner D. R. Ackerman, clicked again with the Bar Hopping-Ginger Tree Bren gelding Gimlet Hanover, who moved outside before the far turn and stepped his own last fraction in :28 to win his pari-mutuel debut in 1:58.

Pocono will be racing Monday, June 24 and Tuesday, June 25 cards, both starting at 1 p.m.


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