Big night at Big M for Gingras and Burke
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One of harness racing's most prolific driver-trainer teams flexed their collective muscles at the Meadowlands Friday night, as Yannick Gingras made five trips to the winner's circle while Ron Burke – with Gingras doing the driving – had four on top.
The one victory Gingras had without Burke came in the eighth race feature – a $20,000 conditioned trot that could have been written as a Preferred Handicap – with the Dylan Davis-trained Theresademoninme.
One week after being beaten a nose by the pocket-sitting Opulent Yankee, Gingras returned the favor by sitting a two-hole trip with Theresademoninme this time around as Opulent Yankee (the 3-1 second choice) sailed around the track on the point. After hitting three-quarters in 1:24.3, the leader looked poised to take his third straight, but Gingras and Theresademoninme popped out of the pocket as they straightened away at the head of the stretch and wore down the leader to win by a length in 1:53.4 and return $9.00 to win as the third choice in the betting.
Celebrity Pegasus, the 8-5 public choice, sat a three-hole trip and was not a factor at any time during the stretch drive.
The Gingras and Burke show began in the fourth race as Monica Gallagher ($5.40 to win as the favorite) took a fillies and mares conditioned pace in 1:53.2. Misslarose ($7.00) was next in the fifth, winning a conditioned trot in 1:55.1 before Bettorhaveanother ($4.40 as the public choice) beat conditioned mare pacers in 1:53.2 in the seventh. The duo's four-bagger concluded when Skippin By ($3.40 as the 3-5 chalk) won the ninth race conditioned pace for fillies and mares in 1:53.3.
A LITTLE MORE: The 20-Cent Survivor Pick 10 had a pool that surpassed $20,000 for the second time in 2018 (a total of $20,366 was wagered) and one lucky patron playing into the betting hub in Portland, OR walked away with $17,309 for 'surviving' seven legs. ... The Late 20-Cent Jackpot Super High Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, upping the carryover to $87,767.21. ... All-source wagering totaled $2,377,738. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Saturday at 6:35 p.m.