Manchego & Top Mares Qualify At Pocono

Published: August 25, 2021 01:32 pm EDT

A trio of distinguished mares, with combined lifetime earnings of more than $4.8 million, put in distinguished appearances during Wednesday morning qualifiers at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono – and all three of them were trained by Nancy Takter.

The biggest earner ($3,277,070) in the group is the Muscle Hill six-year-old Manchego, currently No. 1 in the Hambletonian Society/Breeders Crown poll. Dexter Dunn came to Pocono to drive, and he sent Manchego to the front in very moderate splits of :29.4 and :58.3, then shifted into a faster gear, and the mare hit the three-quarters in 1:25.3 and the finish in 1:53.1 – a :54.3 back half. She remains in fine shape for Black Horse Racing, and fans eagerly await a matchup with archrival Atlanta, who won the Sebastian K S Invitational at Pocono this past Saturday in a track record 1:50.1.

There are 12 horses declared in the Roses Are Red Stakes for pacing mares at Woodbine Mohawk Park a week from Saturday. Nine will go in a prep race there this Saturday; a 10th, divisional leader Lyons Sentinel, beat male rivals at Philly this past Sunday in 1:50; and the other two, JK First Lady ($864,670) and Peaky Sneaky ($715,791), were in their own private qualifier at Pocono on Wednesday. JK First Lady, a daughter of Western Ideal out of former Horse of the Year JK Shesalady, rallied out of the pocket for Dunn, Takter, and 3 Brothers Stables to catch Peaky Sneaky (Matt Kakaley) by a half-length in 1:50.3 after the latter had put up splits of :28, 56, and 1:23.3.

*Please note there is no sound available on the qualifier replays.

(With files from PHHA/Pocono)