Sunday Pompano Park card offered speed and surprises

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Ted Black

March 5th, 2018

Sunday evening's card at Pompano Park was highlighted early by two divisions of the second leg of the Fred Monteleone Memorial for older pacers and then through the end of the program featured a bevy of superb efforts by older pacers in overnight events.

In Sunday's opener, the first of two $12,500 divisions of the Monteleone, Dee's Rocketman (Mickey McNichol) benefited from a lively early tempo and rallied from well off the pace to prevail in 1:52.2 as the 3-1 second choice. The six-year-old Rock N Roll Heaven gelding nailed 3-5 favorite Drachan Hanover (Wally Hennessey) at the wire for a head score for his trainer-driver.

Then two races later in the second Monteleone split, Panocchio (Hennessey) overcame a first over journey down the backside and through the far turn and held safe the late bid of 16-1 chance Doo Wop Hanover (Tony Kerwood) to score by a neck in 1:52.2. The eight-year-old No Pan Intended gelding trained by Jim Matison has always displayed a fondness for the Florida five-eighths mile oval and looms a serious threat to capture the series final.

Then just past the midway point of the Sunday card at Pompano, Kotare Yael N (George Napolitano, Jr.) brushed to command before the half then drew clear late to a four-length score as the 6-5 choice in a non-winners of $5,500 last five starts/optional $25,000 claiming event. The six-year-old Mach Three gelding was claimed from trainer Nick Surick by former Maryland reinsman Corey Braden.

Then one race later on the card, Major Starlight (David Ingraham) lived up to his role as the even-money choice when he wore down 16-1 Fly Cowboy (Napolitano) to prevail in 1:52.2. Then two races later in the $11,000 Open II class for older pacers, The Onlyest One (Napolitano) overhauled favored American Hustle (Bryce Fenn) in the lane to post a 9-2 upset in 1:52.1. Then in a very formful finale, River Sport (Hennessey) benefited from a pocket journey behind Fritzie Pic Up Man (Mike Simons) and wore that one down late to score in 1:52.2 in a non-winners of $3500 last five starts/optional $15,000 claiming event. River Sport prevailed as the 6-5 favorite, while Fritzie Pic Up Man just missed as the 13-10 second choice after carving out honest fractions of 27, 55.1 and 1:23.2 that suggest he should win at this level next weekend.