NY review: JK Panache scores at Vernon
August 20, 2016
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Trainer Joe Skowyra and driver Mike Simons swept the pacing features on Saturday (Aug. 20) evening at Tioga Downs, teaming up with Believe This Bob ($4.20) in the featured $13,000 Open 1 Pace and Flying Cowboy ($4.30) in the sub-featured $10,000 Open 2 Pace.
Believe This Bob avenged his defeat to Andreios Kardia in last week's Open 1 successfully, sprinting to a clear lead from Pop Cop (Scott Coulter) on approach to the first turn and controlling the pace through splits of :27.2, :56, and 1:23.2. The 8-year-old Beach Romeo gelding edged clear off the far turn, evading steady first-over gains from runner-up Andreios Kardia (Corey Braden) by 1-3/4 lengths in 1:51. Pop Cop faded to third after laboring from the pocket.
Mary Ann Larrimore owns 38-time winner Believe This Bob, a winner in four of his last six races.
Flying Cowboy used similar tactics early on in the sub-featured event, pushing clear of Winyard Hanover (Jim Meittinis) through the first turn before rating a leisurely :58 half mile. The 6-year-old Brandon's Cowboy gelding responded well to heavy first-over pressure from Vangura (Corey Braden), digging in following a :26.4 third quarter to repel Vangura and hold sway of Winyard Hanover by 1-1/4 lengths in 1:52.1. Major War (Mike Merton) mounted a mild rally off stalling cover to save third.
Wade Wyatt owns Flying Cowboy, a 31-time winner who posted a fourth consecutive victory.
Live racing returns to Tioga Downs on Sunday (August 21), with a 14-race card due to commence at 1:30 p.m. Eliminations for the pacing divisions of the Empire Breeders Classic take center stage along with New York Sire Stakes events for 2-year-old trotting colts and geldings.
At Vernon Downs Saturday, JK Panache ($3.10) continued his dominance in the top pacing ranks at Vernon Downs with a 1:48 shellacking of his three foes in the featured $9,000 Open/Preferred Pace.
John MacDonald sent the 7-year-old Art Major gelding to a clear lead over Modern Gesture (Andy Gardner) on approach to the first turn, posting a :25.2 first quarter before keeping a fast pace throughout. JK Panache maintained an uncontested lead through middle splits of :53.4 and 1:21 before drawing away in upper stretch. JK Panache used a :27 last quarter to evade Jacksrluckytoo (Greg Merton) by 4-1/2 lengths, while Rock On Moe (Dan Daley) rallied mildly to take third in the last yards from the fading Modern Gesture.
Trainer Dave Dewhurst co-owns JK Panache with Philip Hale.
Live racing returns to Vernon Downs on Thursday (August 25) evening, with post time set for 6:45 p.m. Eastern.
And at Saratoga, Idealbeach Hanover (Somebeachsomewhere) prevailed in the local Open for the first time on Saturday night as the Rene Allard-trained pacer toughed out a first over journey.
Hall of Fame reinsman Wally Hennessey piloted the five year old in the $15,000 Open Pace and after leaving for position moved Idealbeach Hanover first over on longshot leader Spinarama (Austin Siegelman). Idealbeach Hanover wore that one down but the backfield was in motion late as the race's favorite Givenupdreaming (Stephane Bouchard) and longshot Mc Rusty (Mark Beckwith) came charging at him in the final strides. Idealbeach Hanover held on to win in 1:52.4 while Givenupdreaming came up second best and Mc Rusty earned the show spot. Idealbeach Hanover, whose victory was his seventh of the season, paid $8.20 to win in the Saturday feature. The exacta returned $19 while the triple came back $132.50.
Live racing resumes on Tuesday night at Saratoga with a 7:05 pm first post. (Tioga, Vernon, Saratoga)