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Nutcracker Sweet Quickest In Bluegrass

Published: September 30, 2017 11:42 pm ET

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Nutcracker Sweet sat the pocket as Closing Statement moved for the top, besting the 4-5 favourite in the stretch to win the second of four divisions of the $302,000 Western Ideal Bluegrass Two-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Pace, presented by Hanover Shoe Farms and Brittany Farms, at The Red Mile on Saturday, September 30 in 1:50.3.

Taking the front after a :28.3 quarter, Nutcracker Sweet later yielded to Closing Statement, stretching him out through the backstretch before eventually letting him clear at the half in :55.3. Tim Tetrick tipped the 8-5 second choice off the rail midway around the final turn, drawing alongside Closing Statement following a 1:23.2 third-quarter before putting him away into the final eighth of a mile. Keystone Tenacious, tracking the contested lead from the rail, took third.

Competing for the interests of Howard Taylor, Order By Stable, and Richard Lombardo, Nutcracker Sweet, by Bettors Delight from the Falcons Future mare Sweet Future, won his third race in starts, amassing $85,116 in earnings. Trained by Jimmy Takter, he paid $5.20 to win.

Im A Big Deal swept to the front off a fast setup, cruising to a 1:51.3 victory in the opening division of the Bluegrass colt and gelding pace.

Positioned fourth as Larry Karr rushed to control in a :25.4 quarter, David Miller tipped Im A Big Deal wide, gaining the lead after a :55 half. Somebaddude, tracking his cover, was left first over around the final turn, applying pressure to Im A Big Deal through a 1:22.3 third-quarter before giving way into the stretch.

Scooting away from the field, Im A Big Deal was unchallenged through the stretch, holding a clear lead as Shadow Cat rallied from second over to take second, while Bounding Dragon, from third over, took third.

Owned by Craig Henderson, Robert Mondillo, and trainer Chris Ryder, Im A Big Deal, by Somebeachsomewhere from the McArdle mare Big Mcdeal, won his third race in eight starts, earning $55,010. Driven by David Miller, he paid $5.40 to win.

Points North popped from the pocket to the lead passing the quarter, proceeding to a 1:52.4 win in the third Bluegrass colt and gelding pace split.

Settling for second as Grand Teton swept to control through a :28.4 quarter, Points North angled outside to retake the lead before the half, hitting that station in :56.1. Manverick moved first over into the far turn, challenging Points North at three-quarters in 1:25.1 before faltering into the stretch.

Room opened for Grand Teton to rally off the rail, rushing alongside Points North into the eighth pole but finishing a neck shy of the winner while Rockin Away closed from third over to finish third.

Scoring his fifth-consecutive and overall win in nine starts this season, Points North, a gelding by Somebeachsomewhere out of the Western Hanover mare Northwest Hanover, returned $7.00 to win. Owned by Pinske Stables, trained by Richard “Nifty” Norman, and driven by Andrew McCarthy, Points North pushed his career earnings to $75,030.

Tim Tetrick, driving 4-5 favourite This Is The Plan, plotted a first-over trip to take the fourth Bluegrass colt and gelding pace in 1:52.4.

Getting away fifth, This Is The Plan sat off a :29 opening quarter set by Pro Beach entering the backstretch. Twin B Tuffenuff moved wide from third, brushing to the front before a :57.1 half to lead into the far turn while This Is The Plan began his move uncovered.

Drawing alongside Twin B Tuffenuff past three-quarters in 1:26, This Is The Plan fought through the stretch to take the lead from Twin B Tuffenuff, edging by in the closing strides to win while Twin B Tuffenuff finished second in a dead heat with pocket-sitter Pro Beach splitting horses late.

A gelding by Somebeachsomewhere out of the Western Ideal mare Thats The Plan, This Is The Plan, winning his second race in nine starts this season, has earned $149,149 for owner-trainer Chris Ryder and co-owner Robert Mondillo. He paid $3.60 to win.

Making a slingshot move in the stretch, Kissin In The Sand bested odds-on favourite Rainbow Room to take the first of three divisions of the $262,700 Artspeak Bluegrass Two-Year-Old Filly Pace, presented by the Artspeak Syndicate and Hanover Shoe Farms, in 1:51.

Kissin In The Sand, sitting second to Double A Mint around the turn, circled to the front through a :28.2 opening quarter, soon opting for the pocket as Rainbow Room brushed to the lead from third before a :55.4 half. Coming to three-quarters, Yannick Gingras gradually edged Kissin In The Sand off the rail, readying for a challenge past the third-quarter in 1:23.4, drawing alongside Rainbow Room into the final eighth and edging by in the final strides with Majorsspeciallady chasing in third.

By Somebeachsomewhere from the Real Artist mare Kiss Me Kate, Kissin In The Sand, returning $9.00, won her fourth race in nine starts, compiling $121,748 in earnings. She competes for owners Marvin Katz and Hatfield Stables and is conditioned by Nancy Johansson.

Sansovina Hanover fanned off cover into the stretch, sliding to a 1:53.1 win in the second division of the Bluegrass filly pace.

Cuts Like A Knife took the lead from Yankee Will Dance, blasting to the rail off the gate, before a :29.1 opening quarter. Kj’s Bekah, sitting third, moved off the rail for the front, taking it prior to a :56.2 half. Sansovina Hanover, flushed first over by Ana Hanover, advanced uncovered around the far turn, picking up cover from Cuts Like A Knife edging off the rail to match strides with leader KJs Bekah at three-quarters in 1:25.2.

KJs Bekah remained in front turning for home. Sansovina Hanover moved toward the center of the track, taking the lead inside the eighth pole while KJs Bekah held second from Betterthangraduate, rallying from a rail trip to take third.

Winning her second race in nine starts, Sansovina Hanover, by Somebeachsomewhere from the Western Terror mare Shacked Up, has earned $73,520 for owners Burke Racing Stable, Silva, Purnel and Libby, Michel Yanek and Weaver Bruscemi. Trained by Ron Burke and driven by Yannick Gingras, she paid $6.40.

Bye Hanover hurried through openings at the rail, winning the third Bluegrass filly pace in 1:52.2.

Strong Opinion set a mostly uncontested pace, going fractions of :28.1, :56.2, and 1:24.4 while enduring mild pressure from 3-5 favourite Come See The Show first over. Drifting off the rail in the stretch, Strong Opinion and Alexas Power, tipping wide off a pocket trip, left a seam for Bye Hanover to slide into contention through the stretch, with Bye Hanover emerging on top within the final sixteenth, besting Strong Opinion in second and Alexas Power finishing third.

Trained by Brian Brown and driven by David Miller, Bye Hanover, by Well Said out of the Somebeachsomewhere mare Beachbunny Hanover, races for owners Richard Lombardo, RBH Ventures, Joe Sbrocco, and Hutchison Harness. Winning her second race in nine starts, she has earned $107,248, and paid $11.60 to win.

Grand Circuit Racing at The Red Mile resumes Sunday, October 1 for the first matinee program of the meet. The Sunday card is highlighted by two divisions of the $177,500 Galleria Bluegrass Three-Year-Old Filly Pace, presented by Fashion Farms, three divisions of the $183,900 Cantab Hall Bluegrass Three-Year-Old Filly Trot, sponsored by Hanover Shoe Farms and Brittany Farms, three divisions of the $220,200 Somebeachcomewhere Bluegrass Three-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Pace, sponsored by the Somebeachsomewhere Syndicate and Hanover Shoe Farms, and three divisions of the $216,300 Explosive Matter Bluegrass Three-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Trot, presented by the Explosive Matter Syndicate and Hanover Shoe Farms.

First-race post for the Sunday card is 1:00 p.m. EDT.

(With files from The Red Mile)

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