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Opens Co-Featured At Yonkers

Published: July 10, 2009 10:59 pm ET

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Batalj Launcher (Jason Bartlett, five winners on the 13-race card) snapped pace-setting rank outsider Stonebridge Diablo (Stephane Bouchard) on the money Friday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's co-featured $48,000 Open Handicap Trot.

Sitting a three-hole from post position No. 2, Batalj Launcher--as the 8-5 second choice--watched as 25-1 Stonebridge Diablo rolled through toll plazas of :29, :59.1 and 1:28.3.

"Diablo," with the hopes of longshot lovers and his California groupies, had a length-and-three-quarter lead into the lane. Celebrity Playboy (Jim Pantaleano) was just trotting in place, while Batalj Launcher was all dressed up with no place to go. He left the cones when a first-up Galleons Assassin (Billy Dobson) tired, then lassoed the leader just in time.

Batalj Launcher won by a head in 1:57.3. Celebrity Playboy, Tell Me A Story (Cat Manzi) and Armbro Barrister (Steve Smith) completed the cashers.

Likeabatroutahell (Greg Grismore), returning and assigned outside of his six rivals as the 7-5 choice, jumped it off the in the first turn, while T Js Mr Lavec came up ill.

For Batalj Launcher, a 10-year-old Tap In gelding co-owned by trainer Josh Green and Meadowbranch Stables, he returned $5.20 for his fifth win in 17 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $87.50, with the triple returning $460.

Friday night's co-featured $48,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace saw Pancleefandarpels (Jordan Stratton) prevail as the tepid 2-1 choice.

In one notch to post No. 6 after last week's victress, Sentbytheangels, was sick, "Pancleef" was in an particular hurry. She watched while J K Pure Pearl (Bouchard) led through contested fractions of :27.2, :55.4 and 1:24.3. Pancleefandarpels was second-up behind a parked-for-her-life Double Dream N (Brent Holland) before angling wide in the lane.

The Blue Chip Matchmaker winner outgamed Hannah Isabel (Pat Lachance) by three-quarters of a length in 1:53.2, with J K Pure Pearl, Saymynamesaymyname (Grismore) and Mightymachthree (Bartlett) grabbing the small coin.

For "Pancleef," a five-year-old statebred daughter of Noble Ability trained by Erv Miller for Peter Pan Stables, she returned $6.90 for her seventh win in 20 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $32.60, with the triple returning $60.50.

The state's glamour group makes its second downstate appearance Monday night, with Yonkers Raceway hosting the $217,252 New York Sire Stakes Bruce Hamilton Pace for three-year-old colts and geldings. Four divisions--at $54,313 a pop--go postward.

(Yonkers Raceway)

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