Favoured Rose Run Parker won the $25,000 Winners Over Handicap Trot in 1:53.1 at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono on Sunday (September 4), while in the $25,000 companion class for mares, second choice Not Before Eight upended 1-10 favourite Devil Child in 1:51.
Rose Run Parker continued his winning ways (eight-for-15 this year, 36-for-56 career-wise) despite having to take the “tuck-then-first-over” route, grinding down pacesetter Armor Hanover while going his own last half in :55.2 and winning by a half-length from that rival. The altered son of Jailhouse Jesse boosted his bankroll to $747,990 for driver Matt Kakaley, trainer Ron Burke, and the powerful partnership of Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC.
The mare Devil Child was accorded overwhelming favouritism despite the outside post seven after coming from 10th at the half to land third behind divisional queenpins Lady Shadow and Solar Sister in the Artiscape at Tioga Downs in her last start. But she found herself three-wide past a :27 quarter to get the lead on Sunday, with Not Before Eight, who left the gate just to her inside, enjoying the two-hole trip. Despite moderate middle numbers, the hard early work caught up with Devil Child, and Not Before Eight proved to be a pocket rocket, winning by a neck over late-rushing Al Raza N, with Devil Child another half-length back in third. Scott Zeron handled the victorious daughter of Bettors Delight for trainer Steve Elliott and owner Ernest Hartman.
The Sunday action at Pocono, to be followed by a concert and fireworks, started at the twilight time of 4:30 p.m., with Monday’s card also to begin at that time – in fact, from here until the end of the season, Pocono will serve as a “bridge track” on Mondays using the 4:30 p.m. first post.