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Athearn Remains Hot At Plainridge

Published: June 7, 2021 9:16 pm ET

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Things have been going quite well for driver Matty Athearn in recent weeks, and the hits kept on coming during Monday’s card at Plainridge Park.

In the $20,000 Winners-Over pace for horses and geldings, Athearn got away seventh with Artful Way while Duplicated N (Bruce Ranger) cut the fractions. As the race passed the half in :55.4, Rock Diamonds N (Ron Cushing) was rolling up the outside with Artful Way in tow and they both continued to make up ground going to three-quarters.

Duplicated N and Rock Diamonds N paced around the last turn in lock-step while Artful Way took full advantage of the shield. Before they straightened for home, Athearn tipped Artful Way three-high and got himself down low in the process. Then with a few taps of the wheel disk, Artful Way swelled up and paced away to a 1-1/4 length victory and seasonal mark of 1:51.3.

It was the 63rd career win for the venerable Artful Way ($13.20) who is owned by the Kellogg Racing Stable and trained by Jackie Greene.

There was another stellar field of Winners-Over male pacers who vied for $15,000 in the secondary feature and that group produced the fastest mile of the day.

The front-running Major Leaguer (Nick Graffam) took his usual spot on the point to the quarter in :26.3, but Yonkers invader St. Lads Neptune (Shawn Gray) had other ideas and grabbed the lead from him and completed the first half in :54.3. It was there that Mansome (Drew Monti) was out in the breeze, moving steadily towards the leader.

Mansome drew alongside St Lads Neptune before the three-quarters and paced side-by-side with him around the far turn. When they hit the top of the stretch, Mansome looked strong and paced away under moderate Monti motivation to score a 1-1/4 length win in 1:50.4, which was a new lifetime mark.

Mansome ($7.20) is owned by Bruce Weinstein and his trainer, Elisha Lafreniere.

Finally, the top fillies and mares on the grounds had their big weekly bout in the $15,000 Winners-Over for distaff side-wheelers and The Fun Marshall (Bruce Ranger) certainly had a good time. After grabbing the lead past the quarter that went in a brisk :26.3, The Fun Marshall backed off the half to :55.4 before stepping off a sharp :27 third panel. Around the far turn the mare stretched out to a four length advantage and The Fun Marshall hit the line alone under Ranger wraps in 1:51.1, which was a new lifetime mark.

With that win, The Fun Marshall ($2.80) went over the quarter-million dollar mark lifetime, now sporting a bankroll of $256,881 for owners Jim Winske, David Winske and Stephen Michaels. Melissa Beckwith trains the winner.

There was no winner in the Wicked hi-5 Pentafecta wager again today and as a result, there will be an $18,974.05 carry over in the sixth race on Thursday (June 10) when live racing resumes at Plainridge Park. Post time for the first race is set at 4 p.m.

(Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts)

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