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Tea Party Princess leads NYSS winners at Yonkers

September 20, 2011
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What started as a match race turned into a no-match race Monday night, with Yonkers Raceway hosting the $234,832 New York Sire Stakes Peekskill Pace for 3-year-old fillies.

The lone ($78,744) wagering division was to pit "Peelers" against "Princess," but when See You at Peelers came up ill a few days ago, all eyes turned to Tea Party Princess.

With Jim Morrill Jr. doing the honors from post position No. 2, the 1-20 proposition was a patient third behind Mad World (Larry Stalbaum) and Park Lane Heather (Jason Bartlett). The former put up intervals of :29, :57.4 and 1:25.3 before Tea Party Princess made her move. The people's preference took up the chase, having to make up 2 1;/2 lengths turning for home.

No problem. Tea Party Princess attacked and went on by, prevailing by a measured length in 1:54. It was a good second for Mad World, with Haze's Zure Bet (Andy Miller), Asteria Blue Chip (Jeff Gregory) and Park Lane Heather grabbing the minor spoils.   

For Tea Party Princess, a daughter of Art Major trained by Dave Menary for owner Brad Gray, she returned the bare-minimum $2.10 for her seventh win in 14 seasonal starts (six for last seven). The exacta paid $10, with the triple returning $45.20.

"Obviously, without 'Peelers' I could race my filly any way I wanted to," Morrill--now with 4,998 career victories--said. "She's been a little hot, so I let her settle as long as I could. Once I asked her for speed, she did the rest.  She's getting very good at the right time of the season.

As far as Morrill's upcoming personal milestone, "Reaching 5,000 wins is something I appreciate, though I really should have a lot more by now. "It would be fun to do it here (Yonkers, where he's driving Tuesday night), because I have a lot of good memories over the years.”

The other milestone member-in-waiting, Steve Smith, remains at 2,999 career wins after failing in his lone drive Monday night.

 A pair of sire stakes non-bettors, worth $78,744 and $77,344, were won by...

--New Album (by Western Terror); co-owners (trainer) Mark Kesmodel,Jeffrey Baimond,Baron Racing/driver Greg Merton; (now 9-for-17) 1:54.2;

--Some Girls Do (by American Ideal); co-owners (as Burke Racing, trainer) Ron Burke,Weaver Bruscemi,Frank Baldachino,Earl Smith/driver Morrill Jr. (now 12-for-23); 1:54.4.

New York Sire Stakes continue here Tuesday night, with the $253,593 Larchmont Pace for 3-year-old colts and geldings. (Yonkers Raceway)
 
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