Odds-on Homicide Hunter (Brian Sears, $3.10) overcame the impost Sunday afternoon (July 22), winning Yonkers Raceway’s featured $54,800 Open Handicap Trot.
The weekly trotting feature went as the late-morning opener, the first of four, 1-1/4 miles, bigger-field ‘French’ forays.
Away sixth from his eight-ball incarceration in the field of 10, Homicide Hunter saw Madhatter Bluechip (Brent Holland) make the first lead. Gural Hanover (George Brennan) and lass NF Happenstance (Jack Parker Jr.) found seats directly in behind.
After early subsections off :28, :57.2 and 1:25.4, there was a second helping of ‘Happenstance,’ as the mare was first-up. While she began the outer tier, Gural Hanover broke in the pocket. Meanwhile, Madhatter Bluechip was continuing to fight the good fight, with the lead the 1:55.1 milepost.
N F Happenstance had backed out, with Smalltownthrowdown (Dan Dube) going wide, Homicide Hunter wider and 34-1 shot Mostinterestingman (Jordan Stratton) even farther out.
Smalltownthrowdown took a short lead into the lane, but couldn’t sustain it. Homicide Hunter rolled off his rival, then held off a diving-inside Mosinterestingman by a neck in 2:24.2 for the added distance. Buen Camino (Jim Marohn Jr.) was s ground-saving third, with a solidly-closing Bluebird Jesse (Mark MacDonald) and a flattening Smalltownthrowdown settling for the minors.
For Homicide Hunter, a 6-year-old Mr. Cantab gelding owned by Crawford Racing and trained by Chris Oakes, it was his fifth (consecutive) win in six seasonal starts (career earnings now over $1.28 million). The exacta paid $47.60, the triple returned $511 and the superfecta paid $3,625.
Sunday’s incarnation of the ‘New York, New York Double’ featured a winning combination of 1-La Moneda (Saratoga’s third race) and 2–Coach Cummings (Yonkers’ fifth race) and returning $11.50 for every correct $1 ticket. Total pool was $5,488.
The next Sunday matinee is July 29th (post time TBD).