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Rock Diamonds N Upsets At Plainridge

Published: August 19, 2021 8:12 pm ET

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Although he has been racing at a very high level in his last five starts, Rock Diamonds N was grossly overlooked by the betting public from post eight at 20-1 and he made the punters pay after he stormed down the lane to capture the featured $20,000 Winners-Over Handicap pace at Plainridge Park on Thursday afternoon.

Rock Diamonds N (Ron Cushing) got away last while Rollinlikethunder (Matty Athearn) took the group to the quarter in :26.2. The field peeled into two rows as an outer flow formed at the half, led by Artful Way (Jay Randall) who covered Blu Crew (Bruce Ranger) and Rock Diamonds N, who was still seventh but rolling.

Positions remained the same up the backside and into the final turn with Rollinlikethunder and Artful Way battling it out, but then Blu Crew went three-wide for the drive and Cushing tipped Rock Diamonds N four-wide and was raging with pace. As the race headed towards the payoff, there were six horses with a shot, but Rock Diamonds N was stout and he barrelled across the beam first by ¼ of a length in 1:51.3.

The Ron Cushing and Kevin Sywyk-owned Rock Diamonds N ($43.60) has now earned $73,400 this year on the strength of his five wins.

The longshot winner didn’t prevent a unique winning combination ticket from being purchased as a lucky bettor scored a $3,830.74 payout for a 20-cent Wicked Hi-5 combination of 8-5-1-9-7.

It was bombs-away again in the secondary featured $15,000 conditioned pace when 40-1 shot Cigars And Port (Wally Watson) shook loose in the stretch to pace away to a two length win and pay $83.20.

Watson left hard with Cigars And Port grabbing the top after a swift :26.1 quarter. Immediately, Passport To Art (Shawn Gray) pulled from fourth and claimed the lead as they rolled past the half. The top two horses maintained those positions until the top of the stretch where Cigars And Port tipped off cover and won handily in 1:52.3.

It was the seventh win of the year for Cigars And Port who is owned by Susan Muldoon and Fox Ridge Stable.

Cigars And Port was followed by fellow longshots Starznheaven (Drew Monti) at 14-1 and Odds On Lauderdale (Kevin Switzer, Jr.) at 9-1 to produce an enormous Trifecta payoff of $14,168.40 for a $2 wager on the combination of 8-7-4.

Nick Graffam was the leading driver on Thursday with two wins on the afternoon.

Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Friday (Aug. 20) with post time at 4 p.m.

(Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts)


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