Southwind Chrome shines again in Big M Preferred
December 14, 2019
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Southwind Chrome shrugged off a late challenger once again on the way to winning a second straight Friday night feature at the Meadowlands, the Preferred for trotters.
Last week, the Jeff Cullipher trainee had to deal with Muscle M Up from the far turn to the finish but dug in determinedly to win in a snappy 1:51.4. On Friday night, the 4-year-old son of Chapter Seven-Counter Pointe had to deal with Melady’s Monet in the latter stages, but once again proved up to the challenge.
Southwind Chrome was asked for speed from the gate from driver Dexter Dunn and provided it, racing wide around the first turn before tucking into the three-hole as JL Cruze hit the quarter in :27.
Shortly thereafter, Southwind Chrome was back on the outside moving toward the leader, clearing the top just after the three-eighths and leading at the half in :55.1. Melady’s Monet, the 9-5 favorite, was activated first-over at this point and gradually made up ground on the leader but was still 1½ lengths behind when they turned for home.
Through the stretch, Southwind Chrome maintained his edge in a thoroughly dominant performance, hitting the wire 1¼ lengths in front of Melady’s Monet. JL Cruze held on for third.
Southwind Chrome paid $7.40 to win as the second choice in the wagering after completing the mile in 1:52.1. He now has 11 wins from 31 lifetime starts and earnings of $196,085 for owners Pollack Racing and Cullipher.
“I would say he was better tonight than last week,” said Cullipher. “When he broke three starts ago, we’ll just leave it as a driver’s error. He’s a little funny with his mouth. He can’t stand to be pulled on too much.”
As for Southwind Chrome’s future, Cullipher has high hopes. “(Owner) Tom (Pollack) and I are going to sit down at the beginning of the year and discuss what we are going to do. I think we are going to try many of the older trotting events, races like the Graduate, during 2020.”
Leading driver Dunn upped his win total at the meeting to 37 after winning five times on the program. The Ettore Annunziata-trained Mister Truth pulled off a 78-1 shocker in the eighth race with Vinny Ginsburg driving, keying a 50-cent Pick-4 that came back $3,528.40 in the first of two Toys For Tots Finals (this one for a TrackMaster rating 74.5 or less on the pace) on the program. Piercewave Hanover took the other (for non-winners of $6,500 on the trot). All-source wagering on the 13-race program totaled $2,210,198. (Meadowlands)