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Yonkers Trot, Messenger Elims Contested

Published: August 27, 2017 12:43 am ET

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Yonkers Raceway Saturday, August 26 hosted a trio of $40,000 stakes eliminations,one for the 62nd Messenger Stakes and two for the 63rd Yonkers Trot.

Art Rooney Pace-winner Downbytheseaside made the lead before the half, then rolled home by eight-and-a-half lengths in 1:51 to take the Messenger elimination. Art Scene finished second, and entry-mate to Downbytheseaside, Blood Line, finished third.

The latter made the lead passing a 27-second opening quarter-mile, before Downbytheseaside, away third from post three, found front nearing the :56 half. He began losing his rivals through a 1:23.3 third-quarter, leading by six lengths into the lane.

Macs Jackpot and Summer Side earned the minors, while Funknwaffles, Henry The Dragon and Miso Fast also made next week’s $500,000 second jewel of the Pacing Triple Crown. Beyond Delight was eliminated.

For Downbytheseaside, a son of Somebeachsomewhere trained by Brian Brown for co-owners Country Club Acres, Joe Sbrocco, Richard Lombardo and Diamond Creek Racing, it was his seventh win in 11 seasonal starts, earning $706,216.

“You never take anything for granted, especially in a nine-horse field,” Sears said. “He just has a tremendous turn of speed,” Sears said. “I was so glad he won at Northfield [Milstein Memorial], because he deserved it after some tough luck and tough trips.”

The opening elim for Yonkers Trot had a different feel before the outset when pole-sitting, third choice Enterprise broke behind the gate and effectively was eliminated from the elimination.

That faux pas left the race as a two-choice, two-speed number, with even-money Devious Man waltzing around Westchester, who trotted splits of :28, :59, and 1:28.1. He was chased by the $30,000 buy-in, Yes Mickey. Devious Man, last season’s New York Sire Stakes champ, had a couple of lengths to his advantage in and out of the final turn before Yes Mickey began narrowing in on the leader.

He dove inside, besting Devious Man by a neck in 1:56.1. Another Chapter was distanced from the top two in third, with Southwind Cobra fourth. As for Enterprise, he did catch the field but could not sustain a first-up bid.

For Yes Mickey, a Muscle Hill gelding trained by his driver for owner Mellby Gard Inc., it was his third win in 10 seasonal starts.

The second elim for the Trot went to odds-on favourite Guardian Angel AS, who was grinding by Money Macintosh to win by a half-length in 1:56.2.

Money Macintosh led through intervals of :28.4, 58.1 and 1:27.1, holding second from entrymate Top Flight Angel as that one rallied from last among the six-pack. Di Oggi and Southwind Hydro wound up in a dead-heat for fourth, which led to an unanswered question regarding the number of horses that will race in the final of the Yonkers Trot.

Guardian Angel As, steered by Jason Bartlett for conditioner Anette Lorentzon, returned $3.00 tow in. A state-bred son of 2012 Yonkers Trot winner Archangel co-owned by ACL Stuteri AB & Kjell Johansson and trained by Anette Lorentzon, Guardian Angel As is now seven-for-12 this season.

“I didn’t care where I was going to get away, and I didn’t care if I was going to be first-over,” Bartlett said. “I just didn’t want to tip him on his head leaving. He always gets over Yonkers very well.”

(With files from Yonkers Raceway)

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