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Hypnotic Blue Chip Headlines NYSS

Published: July 29, 2009 7:22 pm ET

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The best race card thus far of the season at Monticello Raceway featured the crème de la crème of the New York Sire Stakes program as the three-year-old colt and gelding pacers raced for a total purse of $175,000 in five divisions on Wednesday, July 29. But the races were hampered by rain that got continually worse as the afternoon progressed.

Not surprisingly, once again in NYSS action it turned out to be Jimmy Morrill, Jr. Day. The talented reinsman won three of the five divisions including an easy victory with Hypnotic Blue Chip in 1:56:4 in the fifth race over the muddy race course.

After they started from Post 6 in their $35,000 split, Morrill took the Hypnotic Blue Chip back and let the field settle. And once all were in line Morrill brushed the son of Art Major-Atraceofmagic to the lead and it was all over except for the shouting.

Hypnotic Blue Chip had gained command before the quarter mile time flashed :29:4 and Morrill kept his colt moving. They passed the half way point in :58:2 with Ray Schnittker and My Last Laugh shadowing him, but following was all that My Last Laugh--and the four others could do--as Hypnotic Blue Chip rambled by the three quarters in 1:27:3 and finished three lengths ahead of Schnittker’s colt in 1:56:4.

Morrill, who never says too much and really wasn’t inspired with the rain pouring down just smiled and accepted congratulations.

It marked Hypnotic Blue Chip’s ninth seasonal victory which upped his seasonal earnings to $254,640 for co-owners Rachel Frost, Stable 45 LLC, Robert Murphy and Mark Harder; the latter also doubles as the colt’s trainer.

However, in the first division prior to the rains coming down, Diamond Stickpin and Howard Okusko, Jr. turned back a solid field, which included the 2-5 favourite Hay Goodlooking, who unfortunately went off stride in the first turn.

But the bettor’s misfortune turned out to be good luck for Okusko.

He sent Diamond Stickpin to the lead from Post 4 and they circled Hay Goodlooking, who started from the two-hole. Just as Diamonmd Stickpin cleared Hay Goodlooking went off-stride and Okusko found himself alone on the lead at the quarter in :28:1. From there Diamond Stickpin raced on the front-end throughout the rest of the mile and finished a one-length winner over Very Upset Richie and Jordan Stratton in a 1:55 clocking.

“Every time we got in together Gates (Brunet, Hay Goodloooking’s driver) was inside of me and I know if I let him take the lead and try to come first-up I can’t beat him. So today I tried to get around him early and thought I’d race in front and let him come first-up. But when Hay Goodloooking made a break I felt pretty confident in my colt’s chances of winning,” Okusko said. “If he (Diamond Stickpin) would grab on (the lines) a little more and pay more attention to what he’s doing he’d be even better.”

The son of Bettors Delight-Silkanddiamonds paced the first half-mile in :58 and the last half in :57, which makes one wonder how good could he can be if Okusko’s assessments are correct.

It was the fourth victory in eight seasonal starts for Diamond Stickpin, who’s owned by Conrad Zurich, Edwin Gold and the Purple Haze Stable.

Morrill also won the third $35,300 division with OK Braveheart by 4-1/2 lengths in a time of 1:57:4 over Mysterious Moment and driver Stephane Bouchard with the rain pouring down

In this one too, Morrill waited until all were settled in a line and then moved OK Braveheart to the front and it was ballgame. The son of Bettors Delight-Color Me Beachy, owned by David Scharf, Rick Phillips and Chuck Pompey, increased his seasonal bankroll to $119,744.

Morrill’s other victory was with Spacehill. The son of Space Shuttle-Matts Life turned back a fast closing Chase The Sun, driven by Stephane Bouchard, by a neck in a 1:56:2 clocking over the muddy track.

For Spacehill, it was his fourth win in eight seasonal starts and he now has bankrolled $75,277 this year. He is owned by the Burke Racing Stable, Joshua Hill, Edna Collins and Weaver Buscemi.

And the final NYSS $35,300 split saw Handsome Harry easily annihilate his competition and roll on to his 10th seasonal triumph while increasing his earnings this year to $132,740.

Jason Bartlett drove the son of Dream Away-Princess Jocelyn to a wire-to-wire 1:57 victory over Redneck Outlaw, who was handled by Billy Dobson.

Proud owners Ralph Del Priore, Jr and Harry Doyle, the latter for whom the homebred was named, were on hand for the blanket presentation but they weren’t alone as a group of folks came to the winner's circle to congratulate them and tell them that they follow Handsome Harry to most of the racetracks at which he has raced thus far and hope to continually do so.

(Monitcello Raceway)

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