Don't Mind Me thwarted the same rival twice en route to victory in 1:57.1, fastest split in Monday's $80,000 Pennsylvania Stallion Series stake at The Meadows. KY Lucky, Master The Past and Plump Jack took the other divisions in the event for 2-year-old colt and gelding trotters.
Don't Mind Me and trainer-driver Jim Raymer had the lead at the quarter when Longcat Hanover and Dan Rawlings ranged up on the outside. When Don't Mind Me refused to release him, Longcat Hanover retreated to the pocket, only to try again near the three-quarters. The result was the same, as Don't Mind Me defeated his persistent challenger by a length, with Up Front Murray third. The time was a tick off the stake record.
"He's a lazy sort of thing--he hasn't even learned to be a racehorse,” Raymer said of the son of Andover Hall-Peace Of Mind, a $50,000 yearling acquisition for Harbor Racing Stable. "If I let Danny go, chances are my horse would've just backed up and not had any interest in racing at all. So I took a shot.
"Physically, he's ready; mentally, he's not. He's like a 5 year old. He loves to be out there, his manners are super. It's just that I want him to be a little bit of a racehorse.”
A three-race maiden entering the stake, Master The Past erased a 4 1/2-length deficit with an uncovered backside burst that carried him to victory in 1:58.4 for Mike Wilder. Wimborne Hanover, who was on the lead when Master The Past blew by, was second, 4 3/4 lengths back, with Marion Coca a rallying third.
"I totally was expecting (a big race from him),” said Clinton Guitard, who conditions the Glidemaster-So Fine Kash gelding, a $15,000 yearling purchase, for Michael Guitard. "He looked like he would win his last race, but he got a little tired. I figured he could go in the stallion series.”
KY Lucky made it two wins in three career starts when he quarter-poled to the lead for Eric Ledford and comfortably held off Cue Hall by a length to score in 1:59. Craig Grummel, Curt Grummel and Chili Day Stables campaign the Illinois-based youngster and sent him to The Meadows to trainer Tim Twaddle. Although he's had the Malabar Millennium-Rosalita gelding for only a week, Twaddle likes what he sees.
"He's a great little guy--I can't say anything bad about him,” Twaddle said. "He's honest and game.”
In the $22,500 Filly & Mare Not Listed Preferred/Preferred Handicap Pace, early leader Do Me Honor was shuffled to fourth but shot the Lightning Lane to notch her second straight victory for Aaron Merriman and owner/trainer Bill Bercury The time of 1:51.2 matched the career best for the 6-year-old daughter of Cheyenne Rei-Do Me Right, who pushed her lifetime bankroll to $487,858. Rescue Team was a head back in second while Novascotia Hanover earned show.
Merriman won five races and Wilder three on the 15-race card. (The Meadows)