Yonkers Raceway’s premier freshmen-fest, the Lawrence B. Sheppard Pace, attracted 20 plebes for the 2017 edition. Thus, there are a trio of, $25,000 elimination races this Saturday night (July 8), with the first two finishers in each—plus the two fastest third-place finishers—returning for the $110,500 finale a week from Saturday night.
The Sheppard, named for the man behind breeding behemoth Hanover Shoe Farms, has its three eliminations going as races four, five and six. Quite a few of these first-season gentlemen have already shown promise.
The second division includes Wild Bill (Ray Schnittker, race five), a winner at first asking (1:53.1) in a Pennsylvania All Stars event at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono this past Sunday night.
The son of Somebeachsomewhere-Wild West Show, and a full brother to world champion Huntsville, looks to his give his trainer/driver a second consecutive Sheppard victory after Summer Side's triumph last year.
Down from Ottawa is Kwik Talkin’ (Jordan Stratton, post 2) to face Wild Bill and five other rivals. The Well Said -Kwik Dial colt is 2-for-2 to begin his career.
Another set of winners landed in the third elimination, with Paprike Blue Chip (Corey Callahan, post one) and Lucky Leonard (Schnittker, post seven). The former, a Roll With Joe-Bliss N Vinegar gelding, won a Pocono overnight in 1:54.2, while the latter—a Well Said-Beachy Lady colt—won a Pa. All Star event in 1:55.1.
The first division finds America’s Guest (Brett Miller, post 3), raced-timed in 1:53 in his purse debut across the river.
Saturday night’s dozen-race dossier with a post time of 7:10 p.m. also includes the requisite $55,000 Open Handicaps, with Luck Be Withyou (Brian Sears) and Awsome Valley (Jason Bartlett) in the eight-hole for their respective events, the eighth race pace and ninth race trot. (Yonkers)