Northern Companion wins at Pompano
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Northern Companion resumed his winning ways at Pompano Park with a sharp winning performance in 1:51.3 on Saturday night.
Driver Rob Hoffman sent the five year-old son of Cambest alertly off the gate from the rail and allowed McSocks, handled by Bruce Ranger, to seize the lead a few steps out and take the field to an opening quarter of :27.2. Just a stride or two prior to the opener, Hoffman pulled the trigger and sent his charge to the top and carded panels of :56.1 and 1:23.3 before sprinting home in :28 straight to record the win measuring a half-length over McSocks with Woodmere Ultimate next followed by Oozie’s Bad Boy and Village Jackson.
Ironically, Northern Companion’s final quarter was the slowest in the field of five, with McSocks carding a final panel of :27.4 and the other three all clocked in :27.3…but unable to fully dent the winner’s protective shield of a length turning for home.
In a post-race interview, Hoffman was generally pleased with "Buddy’s” performance.
"It was a pretty good performance considering the coolness in the air”—it was in the upper 50’s—"and this horse really does his best from off the pace but, in a short field, I didn’t want to let anyone else control the pace and get away with something. When this horse is on the front end, he likes to play ‘cat and mouse’ with the others. He responded very nicely when I asked him for a bit more late.”
Trained by Howard Klohr for owner Dorothy Zarza, "Buddy” won for the fourth time in six 2013 starts sending his yearly bounty to $21,250. He’s banked $122,677 lifetime. He paid $3.00 to win.
Sunday night racing begins with a March 3 program and continues throughout the month with post time remaining at 7:05 p.m.
The March schedule calls for racing on Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Saturday nights.
The Cal-Expo/Pompano Challenge takes place on Monday night with a six race series covering races four through nine.
Bruce Ranger, Wally Hennessey, Dein Spriggs and Joe Pennacchio make up the Pompano roster with Luke Plano, Steve Wiseman, Rick Bertrand and Dave Siegel comprising the talented Cal-Expo quartet.