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E L Rock, Firstclassprincess win Smith divisions

September 09, 2011
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Using completely different strategies post time favorites E L Rock and Firstclassprincess won the Charles Smith for sophomore colt trotters and its filly companion race, the Helen Smith, at Freehold on Friday afternoon.

With a long first over brush, post time favorite E L Rock and driver George Brennan won the $75,000 Charles Smith for 3-year-old trotting colts.

Owned by ACL Stuteri AB and trained by Annette Lorentzon, the son of Yankee Glide got away at the back of the pack as two-thirds of the Ray Schnittker entry - Winuendo and Musclelaneous  - left for early position. They settled in at the pylons with Winuendo and Ray Schnittker holding a brief lead until Dave Miller used a three-wide brush to claim the lead by a :28.4 quarter and then took the field to the half in :58.3.

But before the half, Brennan had E L Rock out and rolling, grinding up the outer tier. Finally reaching the front by the three quarters in 1:28.1, Brennan and E L Rock needed a last quarter of just :30 to score a decisive win. Take Heart was second and Winuendo third.  An $80,000 yearling purchase, the Smith was E L Rock’s third win in 10 starts this season.

In the $65,000 Helen Smith, trainer-driver Trond Smedshammer drove Michael Andrews’s Firstclassprincess like the heavy favorite she was, taking full advantage of the rail to grab the early lead and control the pace by an opening panel of :29.

Ilia and Jeff Gregory tried to bid for the lead to the half in :59.3, but Firstclassprincess had no trouble turning her away. As Ilia ducked in to follow Firstclassprincess, she simply opened up her lead rolling by the three quarters in 1:29 and increasing it down the lane to stroll home much the best in a career-best 1:57.4. Ilia was second and Taya’s Photo third.

A $70,000 daughter of Classic Photo, Firstclassprincess made the Smith her first win of the season and the second of her career.
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