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Freshman Fillies Impress At Pocono

Published: June 28, 2016 10:01 pm ET

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The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono hosted four $30,000 divisions of a Pennsylvania All-Stars event for two-year-old pacing fillies as its feature on Tuesday night, with the races conducted over a sloppy track.

If you want to win a division of this race in future years, we figured out the “recipe”:

--The primary ingredient has to be a Somebeachsomewhere filly who sold for six figures as a yearling, or a Well Said miss that sold as a yearling for exactly $27,000. If you were a $100,000 purchase, your dam had to have won over $1 million on the racetrack; if a Well Said, somebody in the immediate family had to top $750,000 in racing earnings.

--Your horse had to be making her purse debut, with a winning qualifier already under her girth.

--Your driver’s name had to be either “Gingras” or “Miller.”

--Your filly had to be the favourite in the race.

--She had to be on the lead at the half, preferably (3 out of 4) by making a move in the second quarter (the other winner led at every pole).

--She had to take a new lifetime mark.

That seems a very simple formula to follow, doesn’t it? Here’s how it played out over the four divisions:

Yannick Gingras won two of the All-Stars sections, the first with the Somebeachsomewhere-Idyllic filly Idyllic Beach, who won by three-quarters of a length over hard-charging rival Tardy For The Party in 1:55.4 for trainer Jimmy Takter and owners Christina Takter, John Fielding, Brixton Medical Inc and Marvin Katz.

Gingras later posted a win with Sapphire Breeze, a Ron Burke-trained daughter of Well Said whose half-brother Fat Mans Alley just went over the $750,000 plateau with a win here Saturday on Sun Stakes elimination night. Sapphire Breeze, who was clocked in 1:55.2, prevailed by 2-3/4 lengths over the late-closing Pittstop Danika. She is owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC, Phillip Collura, Michelle Yanek and Weaver Bruscemi LLC.

The other winning daughter of Well Said was Watch What You Say, whose second dam was a half-sister to the $1.2 million-winning world champion Hana Hanover. This Mike Hall-trained miss defied the “cookbook” in two ways: she was the only wire-to-wire winner, being 3-3/4 lengths clear at the wire in the fastest time of 1:54.4 for driver Brett Miller; and she was the only visitor to Victory Lane who had part of her ownership team purchase her yesterday – after a 1:55.1 qualifying win at Harrah’s, Watch What You Say attracted enough attention that the CTC Stable saw its partner, and the filly’s breeder, Fred Hertrich III, sell his share to Brad Grant and Howard Taylor, with the deal registered the previous calendar day.

The other daughter of Somebeachsomewhere, Someomensomewhere, is out of the seven-figure race mare Omen Hanover, and she added further spice to the recipe by throwing two “Millers” into the pot – driver Marcus and trainer Erv. Someomensomewhere stopped the timer in 1:57.3, with a 28.2 last quarter sufficient to keep Dangerous Woman, who came from last at the three-quarter pole, at bay by 1-1/2 lengths for the Nick Surick Stable LLC and the KDM Stables Corp.

Now that we’ve discovered the recipe for a PA All-Stars winner, we have to start on a formula that produces a Wiggle It Jiggleit, an Always B Miki, or a Freaky Feet Pete (yes, Hoosiers, we’ve figured out the first part). Because these three are matched up for the first time, vying with the likes of Mel Mara, State Treasurer, and five other hard knocking FFAers, in the $500,000 Franklin Pace Championship this Saturday night at Pocono, the highlight of the $2 million Sun Stakes Saturday.

If you have any doubt how much this race is being anticipated, go to the next best thing to the horse’s mouth, the driver’s mouth. Read in the trade press about the excitement being shown by names like Miller, Gingras, and Tetrick – veterans of the racetrack wars who will all be in the race – and be reminded that the eyes of the entire harness racing world will be on the 11th race at the mountain oval Saturday night.


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