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Stage Set For 'Night Of Champions'

Published: September 24, 2013 9:23 pm ET

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Post positions have been drawn for the 24th edition of the New York Night of Champions, hosted by Yonkers Raceway Saturday night. The $1.8 million event, richest night of racing in the state, offers eight, $225,000 sire stakes finals for two-and three-year-olds of both sexes and gaits.

Here are some hot-off-the-overnight-sheet tidbits from each of the races:

Crawford Farms Two-Year-Old Colt/Gelding Trot (Race 2)
Flyhawk El Durado (Mark Macdonald, post 4) eyes a fourth consecutive (NYSS) win. His dead-heat dance partner of a week ago here, Credit Fashion (Brian Sears), won the draw, while JS Trotting Bob (Jim Morrill, Jr., Post 2) and Cash Me Out (Mickey McGivern, Post 8) also figure to be players.

Allerage Farm Two-Year-Old Filly Trot (Race 3)
And then there’s Maude, er, Maud. Maud Blue Chip (Sears, post 6) is 5-for-7 this summer, including winning her last quartet. Like Maud Blue Chip, Market Rally (John Cummings, Jr., Post 5) won her two visits here, at odds of 100-1 and 3-5.

Winbak Farm Two-Year-Old Filly Pace (Race 4)
Sweetnsinful (Jimmy Whittemore, Post 3) has three wins and three seconds in seven tries, her only “misstep” being an interference break. Supplemental Income (Jason Bartlett, post 6), like Sweetnsinful a six-figure performer, did burn money in her latest effort at Batavia.

Stirling Brook Farms Three-Year-Old Filly Trot (Race 5)
After losing her first nine starts this season, Bouncing Bax (Bartlett, Post 4) has rattled off four consecutive wins. Included in those are snappy 1:57-and-change efforts here and at Batavia. Royal Malinda (Dan Daley, Post 1) rolled to a sharp Batavia win in her latest, while ultra-consistent Ban Babe (Cummings, Jr., Post 7) has hit the board in 22-of-25 career starts including a dozen wins.

Morrisville College Equine Institute Three-Year-Old Colt/Gelding Trot (Race 6)
Crazy About Pat (George Brennan, Post 4) has been solid all season, with seven wins and four seconds in 17 tries ($256,492), while the gelding Tirade Hanover (Morrill, Jr., Post 5) - runner-up in the final a season ago - enters the final with four consecutive victories.

Genesee Valley Farm Two-Year-Old Colt/Gelding Pace (Race 7)
The post position gods have ensured the 7-for-7 Hes Watching (Morrill, Jr., Post 1) shall be the NOC’s shortest pari-mutuel proposition, male division. He’s partnered with Major Trick (Brennan listed, Post 2), and both Dave Menary-trained frosh were Yonkers winners earlier this month. Of course, the back story of world record-holder Hes Watching - in addition to his bargain-basement ($3,000) price and earnings of $179,222 to date - was his nearly-costly Happy Wanderer impression through the lane here in mid-September. All Bets Off, who became the late-summer nemesis of Hes Watching, did not qualify for the final.

Cameo Hills Farm Three-Year-Old Filly Pace (Race 8)
Defending champ Summertime Lea (Morrill, Jr., Post 5) figures to be the night’s shortest fairer-sex investment. Eight wins in nine ’13 tries ($241,503) and 16-for-20 lifetime tends to attract some notice. Social Scene (Brennan, Post 6) set a track record (1:52) for her age group here in mid-July.

Blue Chip Farms Three-Year-Old Colt/Gelding Pace (Race 9)
As competitive as any of the finals, with standouts Fool Me Once (Sears, Post 5), Bet The Moon (Brennan, Post 6) and defending champ Doctor Butch (Morrill, Jr., Post 8). Fool Me Once, 9-for-13 this season, has earned more than $368,000 in 2013, Doctor Butch won the Art Rooney Pace here in early June and Bet The Moon has been board-certified in 18-of-26 career efforts.

(Yonkers Raceway)

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