Tetrick has hot hands at chilly Philly
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Before driver Tim Tetrick headed south to Dover Downs for some stakes competition later Wednesday and Thursday, he got himself a nice little warmup at Harrah’s Philadelphia during the afternoon card, visiting Victory Lane six times before going to the First State.
Tetrick’s six victories give him a 299-266 lead over George Napolitano Jr. with 18 cards left in the 2019 Philly season. Should Tetrick retain his lead, he would win his sixth driving victory title at Harrah’s Philadelphia, and bring him to within one of Napolitano’s seven local win crowns.
Tetrick was not victorious in either of the day’s $16,000 featured events--he was gone before the trotting contest was held, and in the pace he was second with Missile Seelster behind 12-1 upset winner Cecil Casanova, who rallied from far back to post a 1:53 triumph by a half-length. Scott Zeron drove the winning sophomore Ponder gelding for trainer Peter Foley and All Star Racing Inc.
In the top trot, Hatikvah came along well late to hit the wire first in 1:56.1. Driver Mattias Melander also chose off-the-pace tactics with the Chapter Seven 3-year-old colt, and the youngster responded to overhaul longshot pacesetter Mystical Wynn by a length for trainer Marcus Melander and the partnership of Richard Gutnick, Thomas Pontone, Joseph Lozito Jr., and Ted Gewertz.
The high off-the-pace success rate is unusual for Philly, which has seen speed hold up well, but as temperature approached the freezing mark, only four of 12 horses leading at the half held on to the finish. All four of them were driven by Tetrick. (Harrah's Philadelphia/PHHA)