Pure Barre, part of a powerful Tom Gonsalves entry, conquered five rivals, including her stablemate, and a sloppy racing surface to win the $10,500 Open 1 Handicap Trot on Wednesday night at Pompano Park.
The 5 year-old Classic Photo mare, owned by Gonsalves and driven by Kevin Wallis, used her usual stout closing kick to edge past I'll Tell You What (Dave Ingraham) to win by three parts of a length in 1:56.1. She's All In (Rick Plano) was a fast closing third and a length away from the winner on the wire with Blushing Hanover, the other half of the Gonsalves entry, fourth. Dream Lake picked up the final check while the pacesetting Lady Deda D finished last after cutting fractions of :28, :58.2 and 1:27.1.
Pure Barre (pronounced Bar-Ray) trailed her rivals for the first half mile before tilting out on the backstretch and following the live cover of I'll Tell You What heading into the final turn.
Straightening away for home, I'll Tell You What took a clear lead but was no match for Pure Barre's knockout punch of :28.2.
After the race, driver Wallis said, "This mare loves to race off the pace. I was a little concerned when the half was so slow but she handled the track very well and was able to get by them late. The only thing wrong with her is that I don't own her!”
The win pushed her lifetime earnings over the $100,000 mark--$103,675 to be exact—and proved to be her ninth lifetime success in 63 starts.
Pompano Park's "trifecta of special events” gets under way with Sunday night racing returning to the South Florida throughout the month of March. Post time will remain at 7:05 p.m.
Also, the famed announcer Larry Lederman will be high atop the Pompano oval giving his legendary and witty race calls on Sunday, March 3 and Monday, March 4.
The third part of the "track trifecta of special events” takes place this coming Monday with the innovative Sunshine Pro-Am challenge featuring the best drivers—professional and amateur—from Pompano Park and Cal-Expo in a multi-race series.
Wally Hennessey, Bruce Ranger, Joe Pennacchio and Dein Spriggs will represent the "PPk” roster while Steve Wiseman, Luke Plano, Dave Siegel and Rick Bertrand will ship in from California to represent the California contingent.
Ranger and Hennessey have combined for over 16,500 victories while "amateurs” Spriggs and Pennacchio have over 500 victories. The 32 year-old Luke Plano has amassed 2,329 driving wins and is winning at a 30% clip with a .466 batting average thus far in 2013. Wiseman has chalked up 1,911 lifetime victories. Siegel is winning at a near 20% clip in 2013—260 lifetime wins—while Bertrand has 42 lifetime wins, one of which was the clincher when the California clan upset the Pompano four in the final event of their competition last year. (Pompano)