Empire Breeders elims attract To Dream On
May 31, 2013
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Elimination races for the New York-sired $500,000 Empire Breeders Classics (EBC) 3-year-old trots are part of a Sunday, June 2, matinee card at Vernon Downs.
The fillies were split into two $12,500 divisions of seven that are carded as races 3 and 5. The first division features 2012 Dan Patch award winner To Dream On and 2012 NYSS Final runner-up Isabella Gal. To Dream On makes her first seasonal start for the Jimmy Takter stable and the race has enticed her regular pilot, Yannick Gingras, in for the drive. The Credit Winner filly lists the Breeders Crown among her eight stakes wins in just nine starts last year for owners Marvin Katz, Al Libfeld and Sam Goldband, all of Ontario, Canada.
Isabella Gal is local talent, having been bred and raised by recent inductee to the Upstate New York Harness Writer's Hall of Fame, Robert A. Brooks, who owns the filly along with his wife Lynn, John Buettner and her trainer, Jeff Long.
Lady Suffolk division winner Lola De Vie heads the second filly split, race five. Another Credit Winner lass, she was bred and retained by Joie De Vie Farm LLC and is trained by Chris Ryder.
Trainer Bob Bencal brings the lightly raced Perfect Alliance into the EBC elims for owner Jeff Gural's Little E LLC, off of a second at the Meadowlands in her last start.
The seventh race is the first of two for the colts and will pit the first and second place finishers from last year's NYSS final against each otherright out of the box. Fashion Blizzard got the nod in that round and reunites with his regular driver, the New York circuit's top pilot Jimmy Morrill Jr. Credit Winner again appears on the top line of the pedigree for this homebred winner of more than $300,000 for the interests of owner FashionFarms LLC and trainer Jim Campbell.
Tirade Hanover missed being the NYSS freshman champ by just a head. His seven wins in eleven seasonal starts left him just shy of $200,000 for his freshman season. He's logged a couple of impressive Harrington qualifiers for trainer Tyler Raymer to prepare for his sophomore season. The Crazed gelding is owner by a group that includes the trainer's wife, Leigh, Stephen Moss, and Harold and Helane Solomon.
Division two comes in race nine and there are a few that can really go in that one. Royalty For Life is housed on theVernon backstretch and trainer George Ducharme has used three qualifiers, the fastest a month ago in 1:54.1, to prep his RC Royalty colt. A 1:54.2 Grand Circuit stake win at The Red Mile, a close second in the Breeders Crown final, and earnings of more than a third million dollars last year has drawn national attention to Alfred Ross, Raymond Campbell and Paul Fontaine's colt.
Royalty For Life, however, is not in by himself. Twisted Pretzel was a contender in the NYSS program last year in the capable hands of trainer Paul Kelley, who owns him with Abraham Singer and Ted Gewertz. Pine Credit likes the big tracks, as evidenced by his Red Mile form last season, and has a few qualifier preps from the Erv Miller barn. The trainer owns him in part with Harvey Eisman and Mike Anderson's Paymaq Racing. Jurgen Hanover has really come to hand in the Donna Marshall barn this year at age three. He's unbeaten in five starts, ripped through the Weiss series at Pocono and just trottedto a1:54- win at Harrah's Philly. He is owned by agroup thatknows something about winning classic races, Norman and Gerald Smiley in partnership with Tom and Lou Pontone's TLP Stables.
Post time for the 13 race extravaganza is 1:15 pm on Sunday afternoon at Vernon. The rich finals are schedule for Sunday, June 9, at 6:45 pm. More details may be found by visiting the track's website. (Vernon)