Special Kay Deo takes new Mark with Philly win
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Special Kay Deo is in the form of her young life with the sophomore daughter of American Ideal taking a new mark of 1:52 while winning the $16,000 featured pace for distaffs Friday afternoon at Harrah’s Philadelphia.
Odds-on favorite Believe In Me brushed to the lead after a 27.4 initial split, and many then thought the race was for place behind a horse who had several decent recent finishes, with Youaremycandygirl and Kissin In The Sand sprinkled in her competition lines. But Special Kay Deo started uncovered by the 56.2 half, and she was within a length of the leader by the 1:24.3 3/4s, having paced her own third panel in 27.1 to get to that point. And the winner kept right on gaining, having another 27.1 quarter in her, to wear down Believe In Me by ¾ of a length; the chalk held for second in a photo over early leader Zutopia
Corey Callahan handled the sulky assignment for trainer Chris Oakes and Northfolk Racing Stable as the developing miss took her second straight victory in similar late-charging fashion
In the $14,500 co-featured distaff pace, the Bettor’s Delight mare Heavenly Bet, who as recently as 22 days ago was racing at the bottom level, had enough in the stretch to overhaul million-dollar winner and favorite Regil Elektra to lower her mark to 1:51.2 for trainer Susan Marshall, co-owner with John Marshall
Heavenly Bet’s driver was George Napolitano Jr., who recorded his fifth winner of the day, including win prices of $16.80, $13.20, and $37.40 with Heavenly Bet. During the last five Philly cards in which he has driven (since a week ago Wednesday), Napolitano has visited Victory Lane 19 times; he also had 17 successful steers during the most recent four-day race week at Pocono. As of this writing Napolitano is now only nine wins behind Dan Noble, third in the North American win standings, behind 1-2 "usual suspects" Aaron Merriman and Ron Wrenn Jr.
Driver Eric Carlson also had a fine day at Philly, guiding home four winners.
Harrah’s Philadelphia will be back in action on Sunday and then follow that up with a special Labor Day Monday card, both programs starting at 12:40. Monday’s racing is headlined by the $320,000 Pennsylvania Stallion Series Championships for two- and three-year-olds, colts and fillies, trotters and pacers; former Stallion Series champions include Donttellmenomore, Take It Back Terry, and Sidewalk Dancer. (PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia)