Catalina Morgan wins filly and mare pace in 1:53 at Pompano
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Driven from post five by Bruce Ranger, Catalina Morgan was away from the gate well but was quickly engaged by an aggressively handled Queens Gambit N (Dale Hiteman), who powered to the front while parked on the lead through an opening quarter mile that went in :26.4.
As the feature-race pacers made their first trip by the grandstand, Queens Gambit N was presented with a first-over challenge from Hypnotize
(George Napolitano Jr.) , and that duo battled through middle fractions of :56.4 and 1:24 with Catalina Morgan tracking intently from the pocket.
Queens Gambit N entered the stretch with a one-length advantage, but began to weaken and started drifting out, which opened a path along the pylons for Catalina Morgan to charge through. The mare responded with a late burst of speed, sprinting clear of her rivals to prevail by 1 1/2 lengths at the wire.
Catalina Morgan returned $7.00, $3.20, and $3.60 for the victory. The late-charging Armbro Artistic (Dan Clements) brought in $7.80 and $4.80 for second, while Hypnotize paid $2.60 when hanging on to finish third .
Owned by Richard Berthiaume of Pointe-aux-Trembles, Quebec, and trained by Marc Major, Catalina Morgan has visited the winner’s circle in 22 of 85 lifetime starts, with career earnings of $186,645. (Pompano Park)