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Hickfromfrenchlink leads NYSS at Monticello

May 13, 2019
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On Monday (May 13), 3-year-old pacing colts and geldings made their first stop of the New York Sire Stakes season at Monticello Raceway. The conditions were less than ideal as it was a cold, rainy, raw day that was more reminiscent of a fall day than the middle of May.

In the first Sire Stakes division, Hickfromfrenchlick, the Ray Schnittker-trained son of So Surreal started from post position four and went off the 1-5 odds-on favorite. Hickfromfrenchlick (Mark MacDonald) led the pack every step of the way, reeling off evenly-rated fractions of :28.2, :58.1 and 1:28.1. American Mercury (Tim Tetrick) was the first to move down the backside as the outer flow developed, with Stone Hanover right behind him. It looked like Hickfromfrenchlick was going in for an easy layup, but American Mercury paced home strongly. Ultimately, Hickfromfrenchlick rebuffed American Mercury by a scant neck to score in 1:55, pacing his last quarter in :27. Stone Hanover finished third.

Hickfromfrenchlick is owned by Ray Schnittker, Nolamaura Racing LLC and Thomas Spatorico.

The second heat of Sire Stakes was a race of the Majors. Major Blake left quickly from post four but decided to take a two-hole tuck, as Major March and Jason Bartlett left from the rail and cut steady fractions of :28.2, :58.1 and 1:26.4. Respect The Flag and Astaire angled out past the three-quarter marker in an effort to start tracking down Major March, but their efforts were thwarted as Major March coasted to a 1-1/4 length victory in 1:55. Major Blake finished second, while Astaire rallied off cover to finish third.

Major March is trained by Linda Toscano. The Art Major colt is owned by the Bay Pond Racing Stable of Malvern, Pa.

The highly-touted Reigning Deo highlighted the last heat of Sire Stakes, starting from the rail as the 3-5 favorite. Dealer’s Table (Jason Bartlett) controlled the soft fractions of :29.3, :59.3 and 1:28.1. Rollwithpapajoe (Tyler Buter) was the first to come off the rail approaching the half, and he continued the overland route with no cover. Rollwithpapajoe pushed to the lead on the final turn, and he rolled to an easy 3-1/4 length win over the second-over Reigning Deo, who held second place over Covered Bridge.

Rollwithpapajoe, a gelded son of Roll With Joe, is trained by Jenn Bongiorno for owners Barbara Bongiorno, Bill Lambos and Dionisios Liberatos. (Monticello)

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