A slate of eight qualifying races went forward Friday morning at Mohawk Racetrack, and O'Brien Award winner Precocious Beauty was front and center early on.
The multiple stakes-winning daughter of Art Major continued to prep for her 3-year-old campaign in Race 3 for trainer Gregg McNair and his son, driver Doug McNair.
Precocious Beauty lined up in post 7 and was parked forth at the quarter-mile pole, which was clicked off by Palm Beach Hanover (driven by Jody Jamieson) in :29.2. Precocious Beauty cleared to the lead in the second panel and went on to stop the half-mile clock in :58.2. She had a 1 3/4-length lead by the time she breezed past three quarters in 1:26.4. Precocious Beauty was four lengths the best by the time she hit the head of the lane. Completing her mile with a :27.3 final quarter, Precocious Beauty hit the wire first in 1:54.2, six lengths ahead of Palm Beach Hanover.
Gregg McNair spoke with Trot Insider leading up Precocious Beauty's Friday qualifying effort and he said that the filly has been training her way into shape. "I maybe would have qualified her last week, but we didn't get back [from Florida] until Friday night," said McNair. "We trained three or four more times in Florida before we drove up here. She was kept pretty ready."
Five-year-old Rocknroll Hanover gelding Ellis Park got things underway in Race 1 with a 3 1/4-length victory in 1:53.3 for driver Chris Christoforou and trainer Brad Maxwell.
Four-year-old Ken Warkentin horse Creampuff MacDaddy won Race 2 for driver Randy Waples and trainer Brad Maxwell. The win time was 1:57.2 and the margin of victory was 1 1/2 lengths.
Three-year-old Kadabra gelding Pasadena Star was tops in Race 4 for driver Waples and trainer Bob McIntosh, as he trotted to a 7 3/4-length victory in 1:57.2.
Champlain winner Harper Blue Chip trotted to a three-length victory in 1:57 during Race 5. The Majestic Son colt is trained by Mark Steacy and was driven by Sylvain Filion.
‘Team McNair' clicked again in Race 6 with 3-year-old Art Major filly Barefoot Beauty. The bay went wire to wire and posted a seven-length victory in 1:53.2.
Waples and McIntosh won the seventh race on the qualifying docket with Stonebridge Regal gelding Regal Son. The bay was a gate-to-wire winner, as he hung on for a neck victory in 1:54.4.
Trainer Ben Wallace and driver Paul MacDonell finished off the qualifying session by recording a win with Tsunami Seelster in Race 8. The 3-year-old Deweycheatumnhowe gelding posted a 1 3/4-length victory in 1:57.3. (SC)