Derby Day qualifiers were contested under ideal conditions with sunny skies, warm temperatures and little wind.
The first race was a 3YO filly trot and Lifetime Pursuit led all the way after leaving from post ten to win in 1:54.2 finishing the mile with a pair of 28 second quarters. She was in hand for Yannick Gingras throughout, looking sharp. She is trained by Jimmy Takter (as is second place finisher Scream And Shout) and owned by Brittany Farms.
Race two saw 2013 Valley Victory winner Muscle Network (racing without trotting hopples) lead all the way for Dave Miller only to go off stride in the last 100 yards of the 1:54.4 mile. Skates N Plates followed him willingly and was ultimately was beaten a length or so. Nuncio was reserved well off the fractions and closed boldly into the 28 second final quarter in a visually impressive display.
Propulsion, a son of Muscle Hill and Danae that raced only in qualifiers at two, was the third race winner for Mike Lachance in 1:56.1. He was the beneficiary of another late breaker, Green Hornut, who had set the fractions before he went off-stride in the final eighth.
Pacers took the track for race four and Bakersfield was the winner, besting a group of sophomore colts in 1:53, last quarter 27.1 in hand to Ron Pierce from the Takter barn. El Bloombito cut the mile and held for second.
Doo Wop Hanover won the fifth in convincing fashion for John Campbell in 1:51.2 / 26.3. He sat a pocket until the three quarters, ripped out and sailed by. Capital Account was a good second and Dancin Yankee a flying third.
Three year old filly pacers were up next and Tony Alagna’s Sandbetweenurtoes looked strong winning in 1:54.2 / 27- for Tim Tetrick. Lotsa Matzah was second, It Was Fascination and She’s Dangerous finished in tandem a closing third and fourth.
This morning’s feature was another monster match up pitting 2013 Horse of the Year Bee A Magician against last year’s aged trotting horse of the year Market Share. This week the gloves came off with Market Share. Tetrick sent him right to the front and won off by himself in 1:52.4 with the last half in 54.4 and final quarter in 27.1 on his own. Bee A Magician was making her first start back since winning the Moni Maker last fall and Brian Sears held her in fourth most of the mile then let her trot through the stretch, finishing third in a useful effort.
Derby simulcast goes on all day here at The Meadowlands with a large crowd expected. Live racing resumes at 7:15pm.