Second-place finishes in both his Yonkers Trot elimination as well as the final had Double Deceiver more than ready to take a solid field of colts and geldings down the road in one of four Tompkins-Geers divisions for trotting three-year-olds at The Meadowlands Saturday night (July 23).
The gelded son of Cantab Hall-Sarcy sat a two-hole from start to finish in both of his Yonkers outings but used a different tactic this time around in the $43,500 dash, one that might have surprised driver Dave Miller just a bit.
“He actually was a little aggressive tonight,” said Miller of his horse’s march to the front early. “He was feeling pretty good, so I just let him trot out.”
Double Deceiver was tracked every step of the way by Finn Palema through fractions of :27.4, :57.3 and 1:25.4, and had to brace for the stretch drive when that Ake Svanstedt trainee, who was the 9-5 second choice, vacated the pocket to come after the leader.
“My horse fought [Finn Palema] a long way through the stretch,” said Miller. “And I couldn’t be happier with him.”
A Carter Pinske trainee, Double Deceiver held off Finn Palema by a neck in a lifetime-best equaling 1:52.3. Classic Hill was third.
Double Deceiver paid $4.40 as the 6-5 favorite and has given his connections plenty to consider as to whether they will go in the Hambletonian eliminations next week.
The other division for colts and geldings, which sported a purse of $44,000, went to S I P for driver Corey Callahan and trainer Ron Burke.
Dismissed at odds of 9-1, S I P led at every call to win for the sixth time from 21 starts. The mile was timed in a lifetime-best 1:52 for the son of Bar Hopping-Barbara Brooks, who paid $20 to win. He, too, is Hambletonian eligible.
Mon Cheval won the first of two Geers splits for fillies (for a purse of $35,750) after stopping the clock in a lifetime-best 1:52. The daughter of Father Patrick-Shake It Cerry was driven by Jimmy Takter and trained by Jimmy’s daughter Nancy. As the even-money choice, Mon Cheval returned $4.20 to win.
Gracelyn Hanover had to go parked out for the final half-mile before prevailing in determined fashion in the other $36,250 division for fillies in 1:52.3 for Callahan and John Butenschoen. The daughter of Walner-Gatka Hanover returned $27.40 to win after going to the gate as the 12-1 fourth choice in the wagering.
Both Mon Cheval and Gracelynn Hanover are Hambletonian Oaks eligible.
A LITTLE MORE: Hot Mess Express, the standout filly from the Tony Alagna barn who earned just over $630,000 during 2021, got into the win column for the first time this year by taking a mid-range conditioned mare pace in 1:50 flat as the 3-5 favourite.
Callahan and Todd McCarthy led the driver colony with three winners apiece. Pinske trained a pair to victory lane, one of which was Venerate, the 2020 Mohawk Million winner who scored in a high-end conditioned trot in 1:52.4 as the 6-5 public choice.
All-source handle totaled $2,538,554.
Racing resumes Friday (July 29) at 6:20 p.m. (EDT). The featured action on next Saturday’s card will be the eliminations for the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks and $1-million Hambletonian.