Yonkers, Rosecroft and Harrington offer ample action

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Ted Black

May 11th, 2019

In the weekend between the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes there may little of note occurring in the thoroughbred racing world, but harness racing fans will have ample action over the next three nights at Yonkers Raceway in New York, Rosecroft Raceway in Maryland and Harrington Raceway in Delaware.

Saturday night's card at Yonkers Raceway is highlighted by two divisions of the W.N. Reynolds Memorial Stakes for three-year-old filly pacers and two divisions for pacing colts, all of which will be contested fairly early on the card. Then the latter portion of the program consists of the normal blend of Open and Preferred events for older pacers and trotters alike.

In the first, $21,500 W.N. Reynolds split for three-year-old filly pacers, Mi Nina Bonita (Brent Holland) arrives off a sharp score at the non-winners of two races lifetime level in 1:54.3 for trainer Jeff Smith, while railbound Another Beach Day (Jason Bartlett) has already prevailed against non-winners of three foes at Pocono Downs. As Time Goes By (Andy Miller) will give Casablanca fans a genuine hunch play when she leaves from post two following her first win in 10 starts last out.

Then one race later in the second W.N. Reynolds split for three-year-old filly pacers, Queen Of The Pride (Jordan Stratton) looms the odds-on choice following back-to-back scores at Miami Valley, including a recent $50,000 Ohio Sire Stakes tally for trainer Kevin Lare and owner Frank Chick. Abigail Dawn has won all three of her starts this year for trainer Chris Ryder and gets post two, while Meadowlands invader Elektra King (George Brennan) scored in 1:52.2 last out for trainer Ron Burke but gets post seven.

One race later in the first, $24,000 W.N. Reynolds split for three-year-old pacing colts, Burke trainee World On Edge (Brennan) leaves from post two following a third-place finish in the $58,500 Wiggle It Jiggleit final at the Big M, while Bro (Holland) leaves from the rail and On Accident (Stratton) will get underway from post three for Lare and Chick. Just Plain Loco won two starts back at Harrah's Philadelphia in 1:53.2 for trainer Tom Fanning.

Then one race later in the second Reynolds split for sophomore pacing colts, No Mas Amor gets the coveted rail for trainer Linda Toscano in his second start back this year following a dull debut at the Big M last out. No Mas Amor took his juvenile mark at Lexington last fall in 1:49.1 then won his elim for the Breeders Crown in 1:50.3 before finishing a respectable fourth in the final at Pocono Downs.

One race later it will be the older trotters on display in the $44,000 Open Handicap. Will Take Charge (Austin Siegelman) was unlucky while losing a headpole last week in the $175,000 Cutler Memorial at The Big M while rallying to get third and he had been second in the Open here one start prior despite a long, first over grind. The Jeff Gillis trainee has usually preferred the larger ovals, but he figures to earn his first victory this season on Saturday night.

Then one race later in the $44,000 Open Handicap for older pacers, Ideal Jimmy (Holland) looks poised to regain his winning ways in this spot. A winner three times in five legs of the George Morton Levy Memorial Series here in March and April, Ideal Jimmy rallied first over from post eight to finish fourth in the $665,000 final.Then after a week off he was assigned the eight hole last week and faded to fifth after being used early. But the Erv Miller trainee should be fit for this event and should control the tempo after clearing Saratoga specialist Artful Way (Brennan) before the opening quarter.

Then on Sunday evening at Rosecroft, much of the action will occur on the back half of the Mother's Day card. In the ninth, a non-winners of $6,000 last four starts class for older pacers, Harrington invader Bodega Bay (Tony Morgan) will seek to end a four-race skid for owner-trainer Gary Ewing. Ballinrobe (Russell Foster) won last out against slightly lesser in 1:53.4 for owner-trainer Brittany Bounds, while railbound Rollin Ring Afire (Allan Davis) seeks his first win in seven starts this year.

One race later in the $12,500 Open I for older pacers, Sams Triple Crown (John Wagner) will seek his second stright score in the top class following last week's 1:50.1 tally for owner-trainer Jerry Nock. Rock N Roll Jet (Kim Vincent) will look to end a four-race slide in this spot for owner-trainer William "Buddy" Bright, while McKenry (Bret Brittingham) will look to regain his winning ways after seeing his three-race skein halted last week. Bettorever (Morgan) makes his local debut after racing in Delaware all winter and spring.

Then one race later in the $12,500 Maryland Exclusive Open for older pacers, Banderbear (Morgan) will seek his second straight local score for Ewing after besting non-winners of $6,000 last four foes last week. Allie's Finale (Roger Plante, Jr.) double jumps after besting non-winners of $4,000 last four rivals, while Diamondkeeper (Foster) exits the true open for owner-trainer Basil Sapienza, although he did win that level in 1:51.2 three starts back.

One race later in the $12,000 Open Handicap for older trotters, Fashion Smile (Jonathan Roberts) seeks his third straight triumph for trainer Megan Roberts while getting assigned the nine hole, just outside of Lindy's Big Bang (Richard Still) who settled for fourth in this spot last week while his trainer-driver was at Pocono Downs guiding Highaltor to a mild upset in the $50,000 Van Rose Memorial. Speed It (Wagner) raced well to get second last week, while Believe In Him looks to forge his status in this class.

Then on Monday afternoon at Harrington, Star Messenger (Morgan) returns to the Delaware half-mile oval following a first- and third-place effort at Rosecroft for Ewing, while Sicily (Victor Kirby) exits the Harrington Open for this non-winners of $13,001 last five starts class. Abbeydorney (Allan Davis) draws the coveted rail, while All Night Party (Mike Cole) and Ideal Kiss (Brittingham) both exit the Open but get posts six and seven, respectively.

One race later in the $18,000 Open Handicap for older pacers, Daiymir (Montrell Teague) will seek his second straight score at the level but gets assigned the eight hole after prevailing as the odds-on choice from the coveted rail last Monday. Slick Tony (Foster) will seek his third win in five tries at the meet for onwer-breeder-trainer George "Ronnie" Leager, whose talented homebred already boasts 22 wins and nearly $440,000 banked from 49 career outings. Blazing Bobby Sox (Art Stafford, Jr.) has been second in each of his last two starts in the top class for his owner-trainer-driver.