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3 for Schnittker in Galt

October 26, 2005

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Last year on Windy City Night at Maywood Park, the Goshen, N.Y.-based duo of trainer-driver Ray Schnittker and assistant trainer Paul Doherty invaded the Illinois trotting ranks by storm, using a one-two punch to win the Galt Trot with Armbro Barrister, just steps ahead of stablemate Last Call At Dem's.

This year the dynamic team brings not one, not two, but three diagonally gaited invaders looking to nab the coveted Galt trophy for the second straight season. Armbro Copenhagen, Hewitt Blue Chip and Clearaway will all carry the stable colors in Friday night's $135,000 Galt Trot at Maywood Park.

"There's power in numbers for sure," Doherty said. "It's kind of like having a baseball team--at the start of the season you're high on them, then halfway through the year reality sets in. If they're good enough they can compete the whole season. They're in the game, though."

Armbro Copenhagen is a full brother to 2005 Galt champ Armbro Barrister. The Malabar Man gelding trotted to a 1:56 mile at Freehold on Aug. 26, equaling the world record for sophomore trotting geldings on a half-mile oval.

"He's a pretty nice horse," Doherty said. "He's a better looking horse than his brother--who did well for us. We didn't wander too far off the beaten path."

Armbro Copenhagen brings a career bankroll of $122,861 into Friday night's Galt and has an 8-3-6 record from 32 career starts. Most recently he won the $41,500 New Jersey Futurity in 1:58 on Oct. 6 with Jeff Gregory at the lines.

Clearaway has earned $206,990 this year, trotting to a 1:54.2 mark on Aug. 5 at the Meadowlands in the $50,000 Townsend Ackerman.

"Clearaway is a big, good-looking horse," Doherty said. "He's by Yankee Glide, and we've had a little luck with some Yankee Glides. He's got a lot of speed and is a bigger horse. But he handles the half-mile pretty well, too."

Hewitt Blue Chip established a new track standard at Saratoga on Aug. 3, 2004 of 2:00.3 for freshman trotting geldings with Schnittker at the lines. The Sir Taurus gelding has earned $135,460 lifetime and owns a mark of 1:59 that he recorded in early September of this year at Saratoga.

The entry is the 3-1 morning line favorite. Old Oaken Bucket champion Bare It All (John Campbell) is the early 7-2 choice, while recent New Jersey Sire Stakes winner Magic Swan (Andy Miller) is next at 4-1.

Miracle Yankee (8-1, Brian Sears), Garth Vader (6-1, D.R. Ackerman), Vanished (15-1, Ron Marsh), Sherrie's Delight (6-1, Tony Morgan), Oatmeister (12-1, Dan Shetler) and The Vicster (12-1, Tim Tetrick) complete the 11-horse field.

The Galt Trot is one of four open stakes on the Windy City Pace Night program. Also to be raced are two $65,000 Cinderella divisions for 3-year-old pacing fillies, the $140,000 Abe Lincoln for first-season pacing colts and geldings, and Maywood Park's showcase event, the $275,000 Windy City Pace final for 3-year-old pacing colts and geldings. (Maywood Park)
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