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Broadway Donna Set For 2016 Debut

Published: June 16, 2016 4:52 pm ET

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Broadway Donna, 2015's Two-Year-Old Trotting Filly of the Year in the U.S., will make her 2016 debut on Sunday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono as the second preliminary round of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes for sophomore misses will be conducted over three divisions.

Broadway Donna, a daughter of Donato Hanover – Broadway Schooner trained by Jim Campbell for owner / breeder Fashion Farms LLC of New Hope PA, went undefeated in the first nine starts of her freshman campaign, along the way taking the three preliminary Sire Stakes legs she contested and then the $351,000 Championship event.

In a singular case of bad timing, though, Broadway Donna made a break in her tenth and what would turn out to be last start of 2015, opening up a three and a half-length lead after a brush to the three-quarters but then losing gait at Woodbine in her Breeders Crown elimination, thus failing to qualify for the next week’s Crown Championship. But the quality of her two-year-old campaign in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Kentucky (she was a major stakes winner in all three states) carried her to U.S. divisional honours.

Broadway Donna comes back to the racing wars off of three straight wins in qualifying events. She will be starting from post two in the fourth race field of nine with her regular driver, Hall of Famer David Miller, set to pilot her. Her main opposition may come from Spicedbourbongirl, victorious in the first Sire Stakes prelim on May 7 at The Meadows, and 4-for-5 this year for co-owner / trainer / driver Jeff Gregory.

Each of Sunday’s three Sire Stakes divisions contains a May 7 Meadows winner from the first prelim. Race 6 will feature Ginny Weasley, a daughter of Andover Hall who overcame post eight in winning in western Pennsylvania. Ginny Weasley will be starting Sunday having been away from the races for 33 days -- since a second in a PA All-Stars event at Pocono -- but trainer Åke Svanstedt has become known for sending out a ready-to-win horse when any member of his stable goes behind the gate. Svanstedt’s lieutenant Lucas Wallin, who guided her to victory at The Meadows, again will be in the sulky as Ginny Weasley starts from the middle of the nine-horse field.

Fastest of the three winners during the Meadows first preliminary was the Cantab Hall filly Pink Pistol, who closed from sixth at the half to show her heels to the field in 1:55 flat. Trainer Rob Harmon has again tapped driver Jeff Gregory for Sunday’s eighth race PASS division, with the pair starting two from the outside in post seven.

Aside from the Sire Stakes fillies, another trotter who will attract his fair share of attention on Sunday is JL Cruze. The Older Trotting Male of the Year in U.S. in 2015 has drawn the rail in a field of eight contesting a $25,000 winners-over event in race 10. The Crazed gelding, one of the few trotters in history to possess a sub-1:50 mark which he earned at The Meadowlands by winning in 1:49.4, has won four of six races this season, but in his last start he made a break while on the lead of the Maxie Lee Trot at Harrah’s Philadelphia on May 29. Trainer Eric Ell and driver John Campbell will be looking to get the star trotter back on course against a field which includes Rose Run Parker, whose 1:50.4 victory in New Jersey on May 20 still stands as the fastest trotting mile of the season.

On Monday, five divisions of the sophomore trotting fillies will battle it out in the second preliminary round of Pennsylvania Stallion Series action. Much of that night’s attention will be on Goodtogo Hanover (race 5, post 5, trainer Bill Zendt, driver Brian Zendt), a first round prelim winner and also a Currier and Ives winner at the Zendts’ home track of The Meadows, as she makes her first 2016 start away from her base.

(with files from PHHA/Pocono)


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