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The Meadows Grand Circuit wrap-up

July 29, 2018

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Saturday’s card at The Meadows, which featured the $400,000 final of the Delvin Miller Adios Pace for the Orchids and the $121,000 Quinton Patterson Adioo Volo, also offered four additional Grand Circuit stakes. Here are the highlights of those Arden Downs events:

$57,914 James Manderino — 3-Year-Old Colt & Gelding Trotters

Scirocco Rob got some help when 3-5 favorite Joey broke stride at the start. But the Explosive Matter-Fun At Parties gelding might not have needed the assistance, as he rolled to his third straight victory, in 1:56, for Corey Callahan, trainer John Butenschoen and owners Lewis Whitaker and Kathleen Whitaker. Keystone Apache rallied for second, 2 lengths back, with Garnet third.

"When that other horse ran behind the gate, he was the only horse that I was worried about," Callahan said. "So I was able to just kind of mosey around there. When you can go somewhat of a training mile, it’s a lot easier than having to stretch him out."

Scirocco Bob now boasts $199,603 in career earnings.

In the other division, Im Your Captain also caught a break when the leader, Quality Kemp, jumped it off near the half. Im Your Captain inherited the front and scored in 1:55.3, 5-3/4 lengths better than the fast-closing What A Hunk. House Hubby completed the ticket.

"I kind of had it down to Quality Kemp and my horse, so I didn’t want to do anything too goofy," said winning driver Marcus Miller. "I thought he could either cut it or win out of the two hole. It worked out okay."

Julie Miller, Marcus’ aunt, trains the son of Muscle Hill-Frisky Strike for Andy Miller Stable and Black Horse Racing.

When asked what he might recommend to Aunt Julie about the horse’s next start, Marcus Miller took a diplomatic approach.

"I just plan to tell her thank you," he said.

$47,634 Gov. David L. Lawrence — 2-Year-Old Colt & Gelding Pacers

Perhaps wiser and more determined after a frustrated first-over bid in his last outing, Volley Ball Beach converted a similar move to victory Saturday, prevailing in 1:52.4 — his fastest — for Tony Hall, trainer Norm Parker and owner/breeder Bob Key. Escapetothebeach was second, a half-length back, while No Mas Amor earned show.

"It was different this week because he got to sit to the half," Parker said of the son of Somebeachsomewhere-Alladorable. "We’ve had some issues with him regarding when to make his move. We changed some equipment this week, and it seemed to help."

In the other split, Pyro found late racing room in the center of the track and rallied for Matt Kakaley to score in 1:53, his second win in four career starts. Actor Hanover gave trainer Ron Burke the exacta sweep when he finished second, beaten 2-1/4 lengths, with early leader Aflame Hanover third.

"I figured I’d be able to shake loose somewhere, but I wasn’t going to move him first up," Kakaley said. "It was pretty easy for him today. He was really sharp."

Burke Racing Stable, Larry Karr, Phillip Collura and Weaver Bruscemi LLC campaign Pyro, a son of Sweet Lou-Whetstone Hanover.

$47,634 Mary Lib Miller – 2-Year-Old Filly Pacers

Louphoria and Sylph Hanover are both members of the Burke stable (two of the 26 horses he entered on the Adios Day card, and a pair of the 48 he sent post-ward across the U.S. for the day), and both were sent off at 1-1 by The Meadows’ punters. Both of them started "against the fence" — Louphoria from the "inner fence," Sylph Hanover from the outermost post eight.

And the pair were at each other during most of the :56.1 last half of their division in the freshman filly pace, Louphoria on the lead and Sylph Hanover attacking first-over. In the stretch it was Sylph Hanover who proved the stronger, powering off by 2¾ lengths late over her stablemate for Kakaley as the end horse of a Burke/Kakaley consecutive triple. The daughter of Somebeachsomewhere-She’s A Fan, owned by Burke Racing Stable, William Switala, James Martin, and Joseph Critelli, took a maiden mark of 1:54.1; she had already won in a Philly qualifier just two ticks slower than today’s mile.

"We were always high on her, but she’s been just okay, I guess," Kakaley said. "She wasn’t that good on the front at Pocono, so we wanted to change tactics. She was super today."

She’s Allright remained undefeated after three starts by taking the other division in 1:53.1 and giving Burke his sixth training win of the afternoon, but Darn Tootn Hanover, in only her second lifetime start, made sure the winner knew she was in a tussle. She’s Allright, a Sweet Lou-Atsallrite Hanover miss owned by Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, Michelle Yanek and Collura, was put on the lead by Yannick Gingras, rated the half, then sprinted home in :55.4, but first-over Darn Tootn Hanover gained inch by inch the last half and came up only a head shy.

$56,440 Ned McCarr — 3-Year-Old Filly Trotters

Kenziesky Hanover sure made it interesting as the even-money favorite in the first section of the sophomore filly trot, but she emerged with a 1:57.1 victory for driver Brian Zendt, trainer Bill Zendt, and owners J. Patrick Huber and Glenn Congrove.

Brian Zendt got the Cantab Hall filly a perfect two-hole trip, but as the pair awaited the Lightning Lane behind pacesetter Southwind Angelica and first-over Fish Is Fish, Kenziesky Hanover made a break. She was steered into the passing lane and never went inside the pylons while regaining composure; in the meantime Ms American Muscle came through inside the pacesetter and got the lead. But Zendt and his filly got back on stride and finished with a furious last 50 yards to win by a half-length after the improbable but impressive comeback.

The Zendts completed a sweep of this Grand Circuit event as the Donato Hanover filly Donato’s Jewel went coast-to-coast in 1:54.2, a new mark and a stakes record. Donato’s Jewel had made miscues in four of her last six starts, but before the hometown crowd she was on her best behavior, setting a quick pace and maintaining her advantage despite the late rush of favored Pat Matters, with three-quarters of a length between the rivals at the finish. Gary Saul owns the winner. (The Meadows)

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