Courtly Choice returns Tuesday in NYSS
August 27, 2018
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Meadowlands Pace winner Courtly Choice is invading Yonkers Raceway for the first time Tuesday night coinciding with the $173,500 New York Sires Stakes Armand Palatucci Pace for 3-year-old colts and geldings. Post time for the 10-race card is 6:50 p.m., with the pair of $86,750 statebred events going as races 7 and 8.
Courtly Choice drew post position No. 6 in the opening division, with Dave Miler again driving for co-owners (as part of Mac and Heim Stables)/trainer Blake Macintosh, Daniel Plouffe, Hutt Racing and Touch Stone Farms.
For the season, Courtly Choice has eight wins in 11 starts ($612,018), entering off a down-the-road win in the $272,025 final of the Empire Breeders at Tioga (1:48.3). His 1:47.1 life-best did come in that $701,830 Meadowlands Pace last month.
Tuesday is just his second New York Sires Stakes appearance of the season, having won a Memorial Day event at Vernon (1:48.4). He's only made one other small-track start, winning last season's $50,000 consolation of the NYSS at Monticello.
If Courtly Choice gets a challenge, it's probably going to come from Heavenly Sounds (Jim Mahon Jr., post 3). The Rock N Roll Heaven colt, trained by Bruce Saunders for M&M Harness Racing, has won six races and more than $137,000 this season. He was snappy sires stakes winner here (1:52.4) late last month.
Tuesday night's second and final group includes Macintosh's Rootin' Tootin' (Mark MacDonald, post 7), himself a six-figure performer this season ($102,307).
Jersey Jim (Jordan Stratton, post 2) has not raced back to his frosh sire stakes championship form, while Ghost Dance (Scott Zeron, post 3), Keystone Tenacious (Marohn, post 4) and Ideal Feeling (Jason Bartlett, post 8) were all finalists in the Empire Breeders Classic. (Yonkers)