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Berkery J Matches 'Mighty M' Record

Published: August 19, 2019 8:21 pm ET

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The New York Sire Stakes concluded its 2019 schedule at Monticello Raceway on Monday afternoon, as two-year-old trotting colts pulled down the curtain. Jason Bartlett swept both sire stakes splits and won four of the eight races on the afternoon, including a track record-equalling effort from Berkery J.

In the $52,000 second division of Sire Stakes action, 1-5 favourite Barn Holden, who started from post five in the six-horse field, was content to let Berkery J cut the mile. Berkery J tripped the timers in :28.3, :59 and 1:28.4, and used a :28.3 last quarter to score a wire-to-wire win in a new lifetime mark of 1:58, equalling the divisional track record. Hobbs (Greg Merton) finished second, followed by Barn Holden (Andy Miller).

The well-bred son of Chapter Seven-Southwind Catlin, a $205,000 yearling purchase for owner Ken Jacobs, is trained by George Ducharme.

In the $51,000 first heat of Sire Stakes, Bourbon Express cleared from post three and had five lengths on the field after an opening quarter of :29.2, and then applied the brakes to the half in 1:00.4, with Chaptiama (Trond Smedshammer) and Sky Castle (Charlie Norris) in tow. Bourbon Express passed the three-quarter pole in 1:30.4 and extended his lead back to three lengths at the top of the stretch. Pocket sitter Chaptiama unleashed a :28.4 last quarter to close the gap on Bourbon Express, but the son of RC Royalty and Kasha dug in to prevail by a neck in 2:00.

It was the third Sire Stakes win of the season for Bourbon Express, who upped his seasonal earnings to over $103,000. Trainer Jessica Okusko shares ownership with Salvatore Vullo and James DeArmond.

(With files from Monticello)

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