McCarthy's Mounts Steal The Show At Philly

Todd McCarthy at Woodbine Mohawk Park
Published: June 25, 2023 06:32 pm EDT

On a generally bad day for favourites (at least for most of the card), 13-1 shot B Nicking caught heavy favourite Yanks Dugout in the last step of the $16,200 featured trot on Sunday afternoon at Harrah’s Philadelphia, winning by the smallest possible margin while lowering her lifetime mark to 1:53.2.

Todd McCarthy got the Wishing Stone gelding away flat (something the horse had not accomplished in his last two starts) and fast, making the lead before ceding it to Yanks Dugout before the :27.2 quarter. Yanks Dugout rolled on to the half in :56.2 and the three-quarters in 1:24.3, with B Nicking going outside at headstretch and catching the leader, who had won his last two starts in picture finishes. But today he was not quite so photogenic, which pleased B Nicking’s trainer Scott Di Domenico and owner Ben Roberts.

There were a pair of $15,300 events for developing horses. On the pace, the Huntsville gelding Hazeville won his sixth straight race, tallying in 1:50 for driver Todd McCarthy, trainer Tom Fanning and owners David Rovine Stable LLC, VIP Internet Stable LLC and Howard Taylor. Hazeville made the top nearing a :26.3 opening quarter, put up mid-splits of :55.1 and 1:22.2, then won by 1-3/4 lengths, with pocket-sitter Bounty Hunter beating first-over Sporty M Three by a nostril for the deuce.

On the trot, Senna set the pace with quarters of :27, :56.2 and 1:24.4, then prevailed in a new lifetime mark of 1:53.3 – and then had to survive an inquiry as he and challenger Betterinpinehurst were in tight just past mid-stretch. But the judges found no reason for placing the winning son of Trixton and the three-quarter-length victory stood for driver Todd McCarthy, who accomplished a sweep of the day’s featured events and who had five in all on the card. Bob Shahan trains the winner for Elite Harness Racing LLC.

The fastest mile of the day was the 1:49.4 clocking turned in by the millionaire Workin Ona Mystery, a son of Captaintreacherous who rode the pocket behind fractions of :26.4, :55.1 and 1:22.2 before clearing inside and defeating a tough field for driver Tim Tetrick, trainer Ron Burke and the ownership of Burke Racing Stable LLC, Milton Leeman, Alan Keith and Wingfield Brothers LLC.

None of the winners above were sent off as the crowd favourite. The chalk did not prevail on the 14-race card until the 11th event of the day – then did win the last four (including two American Harness Drivers Club paces).

Harrah’s Philadelphia is currently racing on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday at 12:25 p.m., and Sunday at 12:40 p.m. Next Sunday, the cream of the Pennsylvania-sired three-year-old trotting male crop are coming to town, with perhaps a few considering the Hambletonian in just over a month’s time. Program pages for all races at Harrah’s Philadelphia will be available on the Pennsylvania Harness Horsemen's Assocation website.

Sheridan Doubles In Philly AHDC Events

Driver Yogi Sheridan snagged two of the three $9,900 events for the American Harness Drivers Club (AHDC) on Sunday afternoon at Harrah’s Philadelphia.

In the lone trot, Sheridan swept Lionhead to the lead after a :27.4 first quarter to pocket Drazzmatazz and rolled through the remainder. Lionhead led through middle fractions of :58.1 and 1:27.4 to turn away a mild first-over bid from Masster Blue and then repel the pocket pounce of Drazzmatazz through the lane to win by a half length in 1:57.4. Campbellini sat a pylon trip to take third and Masster Blue settled for fourth.

Terry Morgan trains and owns Lionhead, a seven-year-old gelding by Uncle Peter. He paid $9.80 to win.

Sheridan later scored in the first of two $9,900 divisions of the AHDC Pace with Brushing Up in 1:54.2.

The even-money favourite floated away fourth while Sporty Dragon popped a :26.4 first quarter before yielding command to One Lucky Dude through a :56.2 half. Once action on the point cooled, Sheridan plied his attack along the rim and collared One Lucky Dude by three-quarters in 1:25. Brushing Up then swept clear to a two-length victory over One Lucky Dude with Smileandsaycheese closing for third and Johnny Q taking fourth.

Izzy Estrada conditions Brushing Up, a five-year-old gelding by American Ideal, for his Estrada Racing LLC. He paid $4 to win.

Dante Scattolini capped the 14-race card with a narrow victory in the other AHDC Pace behind Dont Get Shocked, who survived a first-over grind to win in 1:56.3.

Scattolini settled Dont Get Shocked behind Needless To Say and Perseverant, who swapped positions on the front through a :27.1 first quarter before slowing the tempo. Perseverant then braced for the bid from odds-on favourite Dont Get Shocked through a :57 half and kept his opponent at bay to three-quarters in 1:26 until the pressure mounted too high. Dont Get Shocked grabbed the lead off the turn and then staved off the rally from second-over Brother James through the stretch to cross the line a quarter length to the good. A Stud Named Sam rallied from last for third and Major Key took fourth.

Jody Dunning trains Dont Get Shocked, a five-year-old gelding by Ponder, for owners Cya In The Game Racing and Michael Mitchell. He paid $3.80 to win.

AHDC action will take a week off for the July 4 holiday and return on Sunday, July 9 at Pocono Downs at Mohegan Pennsylvania. First-race post time at Pocono Downs is 6 p.m. (EDT).

(With files from PHHA/Harrah’s Philadelphia & AHDC; Photo of Todd McCarthy at Woodbine Mohawk Park last year)

Have something to say about this? Log in or create an account to post a comment.