Muscle Star scores in 1:56.2 in Philly
December 11, 2019
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The Muscle Hill sophomore gelding Muscle Star was able to out-muscle favored pacesetter Choco Charlie late to take a 1:56.2 victory in the $16,000 featured trot at Harrah’s Philadelphia as the southeast Pennsylvania track starts the final week of its 2019 campaign.
Innisfallen and The Rave had grabbed the 1-2 spots, respectively, before the :28 quarter, with Choco Charlie moving in front of the stands to assume the lead before the :57.3 half. Coming off the second turn pocketsitting Innisfallen made a break, letting first-over Muscle Star get into the two-hole, but the winner then pulled outside approaching the 1:26.1 three-quarters, challenged the leader, then beat him to the wire by 1¼ lengths.
George Napolitano Jr., who topped the day’s driving colony with four triumphs, guided the winner, owned by Howard Jacobs, to his first win in three starts since teaming up with trainer Christie Collins.
In the $14,000 co-featured trot, the Calchips Brute roan gelding Paging Doctor Teo blew up the tote board, moving to the lead past pacesetting Fire’N Woodshed late on the far turn and then withstanding Lucky Arnold by ¾ of a length in a career best 1:58 for driver William Carter, trainer Neal Ehrhart, and owner Virginia Ehrhart. With $7791 of a $8429 show pool bet on favored Mabel Simmons, who finished fourth, the mutuels came out this way – Paging Doctor Teo $218.00, $68.60, $224.40; Lucky Arnold $5.00, $23.40; and Fire’N Woodshed $17.20. (PHHA/Harrah's PhiladelphiaP