With the 2-year-old gelding pacer Pierce not eligible to Saturday's International Stallion Stakes at The Red Mile and needing another prep start for next weekend's Breeders Crown eliminations at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs, trainer Jimmy Takter went the qualifying route on Friday morning in Lexington. The result was a huge 1:50.1 victory, romping over a lone competitor by 28 1/4 lengths under the wire.
"I wanted to give him a big blowout," Takter told harnessracing.com shortly after the qualifier. "It was a tightener he needed. He's a good colt."
A son of Well Said, Pierce--named for Hall of Fame driver Ron Pierce--is winless in seven starts this year. In his most recent outing on Sept. 28 in a Bluegrass division at The Red Mile, Pierce finished a late-closing fourth, also with Takter in the sulky. While the winner Odds On Rhodonite was clocked in 1:50.2, Pierce was race-timed in 1:50.4.
There were just two qualifiers held on the sunny Friday morning in Kentucky. Yonkers Trot runner-up Fico scored by eight lengths in 1:54.3 with Corey Callahan driving for trainer Staffan Lind.