Darlinonthebeach scores at Meadowlands
December 29, 2018
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Darlinonthebeach made her Meadowlands return a winning one, taking the Friday night feature, the $20,000 Preferred Handicap for pacing fillies and mares in 1:51, her seasonal best.
The Nifty Norman trainee, who last raced at the Big M on Nov. 16, has battled a nagging suspensory injury for much of the season, which derailed her Breeders Crown and TVG hopes, but she showed no ill effects of her physical problem after a perfect trip led to her third win of the season in nine starts.
Sent to the gate as the 3-5 favorite (along with entrymate Stylish Beachware), Darlinonthebeach was taken to the rear of the eight-horse field by driver David Miller in the early stages. Brazuca, who went off stride briefly before the start, made a bold move at leader Kak’s Shark Attack down the backstretch and on to three-quarters, all the while providing a perfect tow for Darlinonthebeach, who was in an ideal second-over flow.
With three-sixteenths of a mile to go, Darlinonthebeach was tipped off her cover by Miller and rolled to a decisive 1¾-length victory over Jewel Lehigh A, who rallied for second. Brazuca hung in there to nab the show dough.
Darlinonthebeach, a 5-year-old daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-Darlin’s Delight who is owned (and was bred) by White Birch Farm, returned $3.20 to her backers. Lifetime, she’s won 20-of-54 starts and banked $1,068,648.
A LITTLE MORE: Yannick Gingras continued his winning ways, guiding four to victory lane, including three for trainer Ron Burke. David Miller and Dexter Dunn had three apiece. Gingras and Miller have 11 victories each over the last three Big M programs … The 50-Cent Pick-4 pool came oh-so-close to reaching the six-figure mark, as a total of $99,938 was pushed through the windows on the Big M’s signature bet. … All-source handle on the 14-race program was $2,486,515. … Racing resumes Saturday at 7:15 p.m. with another action-packed 14-race card.