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Opens On Yonkers Trot Eve; 3,000 For Bartlett

Published: August 28, 2009 11:08 pm ET

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'Twas the night before the Yonkers Trot, and a rainy Yonkers Raceway offered a pair of $50,000 Open Handicaps for your dining and dancing pleasure.

The weekly featured Trot was a matchup of the past couple of Yonkers Trot winners...sort of like Old-Timers Day, except these two boys are both very much active.

Green Day (Cat Manzi), Yonkers Trot Class of 2007 and this group's 9-5 favourite, stepped around Armbro Barrister (Ray Schnittker) to take the baton before a :29.1 opening quarter-mile. He rated a :59.2 weigh station before Beach Nut Brand (Jeff Gregory)--leaving from post position No. 5--moved from fourth.

Green Day maintained the advantage at and through the 1:28 three-quarters, but the lead was evaporating in and out of the final turn. Beach Nut Brand continued his first-over forge, going by the leader, then beating him by a length-and-three-quarters in 1:58. Batalj Launcher (Jason Bartlett, more about him later), Armbro Barrister and Dennis (Brian Sears, a Friday/Monday Yonkers' attendee) grabbed the small change.

As for last season's wild-finish Yonkers Trot champ, Napoleon, he and trainer/driver Trond Smedshammer were a non-factor seventh here leaving from post No. 7.

For Beach Nut Brand, a seven-year-old Branded gelding trained by Mark Harder for co-owners Stable 45 & Scott Kurzrok, he returned $8.30 (co-second choice) for his seventh win in 26 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $21, with the triple returning $115.

The Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace saw Ramona Disomma (Greg Grismore, three consecutive winners Friday) prevail from third-over in 1:55.3.

Twin B Tiara (Jim Pantaleano) worked her way to the lead around longshot pole-sitter Impressive Char (Billy Dobson) before a spiffy :27.4 first two furlongs. She found a :57.3 intermission when Guestimate (Sears) tried her luck pulling from third. That one towed 11-10 choice Still Electric (Bartlett) toward the 1:26.2 three-quarters.

All the while, Twin B Tiara clung to a tenuous lead turning for home, but her crown would be worn by someone else Still Electric shed her carrier, grabbing a short, mid-stretch lead. Then, Ramona Disomma--leaving from post No. 5--moved widest and fastest of all, getting to the line by a neck.

Hannah Isabel (Pat Lachance) rallied for third, with Twin B Tiara and 79-1 outside starter Lightning Pleasure (Stephane Bouchard) completing the cashers.

For Ramona Disomma, a four-year-old statebred daughter of Pacific Rocket trained by Jake Hartline for Anatolia Racing Stable, she returned $11.60 (third choice) for her seventh win in 25 '09 work nights (career earnings to over 300-large). The exacts paid $31.60, with the triple returning $273.50.

Friday night's $55,000 final of the Empire City Claiming Series was won by Hard Hitter (Bartlett, $18) in 1:57.1.

While we're speaking of Yonkers' leading driver, props to Bartlett for his latest milestone. The 28-year-old won three races Friday night, giving him an even 3,000 for his career. The magic number came with the trotter Light Headed in the $37,000, 12th-race trot. Bartlett receives a congratulatory sign from the Raceway Saturday night, by which time the rain (hopefully) shall have stopped.

The 55th Yonkers Trot comes up this Saturday night with a purse of $670,774. Elimination winners Judge Joe (Ron Pierce, Post 1) and Broadway Bistro (Bartlett, Post 8) lead a talented octet. The Trot is the 10th race of the 13-race card, with its companion event, the $327,985 Hudson Filly Trot, goes as the seventh race.

There is also a T-shirt giveaway to racing fans, while supplies last.

(Yonkers Raceway)

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