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Town Gossip Steals Saratoga Spotlight

Published: July 14, 2021 9:00 pm ET

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Town Gossip's sparkling 1:51.1 mile stole the show in Wednesday afternoon's (July 14) New York Sire Stakes for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings at Saratoga Casino Hotel.

Town Gossip roared from the pocket to prevail in the $77,300 first division, roaring out of the pocket to earn a new lifetime mark in the act.

Joe Bongiorno secured the two-hole with the American Ideal-Flibbertigibbet gelding behind Southwind Petyr (Jason Bartlett), who came in on a two-race win streak, through a :56.2 first half. Favorite Ill Drink To That (Matt Kakaley) came first-over on Southwind Petyr, but was turned back after forcing an eye-popping :26.4 third quarter. Southwind Petyr held his ground up the backstretch, but once Town Gossip found open road in the stretch, the race was over. He recorded his third victory, by three-quarters of a length, in eight seasonal tries for trainer Jenn Bongiorno and owner Robert Weinstein. Southwind Petyr held second; Ill Drink To That finished third.

The $78,700 second division went the way of last year's two-year-old champion, King James Express. Bartlett sat patiently with the 3-5 favourite, who rallied from off the pace to record his first win of the season. The Art Major-More Diamonds gelding powered past longtime leader Major Bean (Kakaley) to win in 1:53.3. Natameri (Wally Hennessey) earned the show spot.

Trainer Mark Harder co-owns King James Express with Deena Frost, Wayne Carleton and Dean Lockhart.

Live racing resumes on Saturday (July 17), when night racing returns to the Spa. First post time is set for 6:45 p.m. EDT.

(with files from Saratoga Casino Hotel)

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