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Yonkers\' features decided at the wire

January 27, 2008

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Unlike the South Carolina primary, Saturday night\'s three $30,000 features at Yonkers Raceway were too close to call until the very last precincts checked in. Stonebridge Kisses (Jason Bartlett) and Stacelita (Jim Pantaleano) won the Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace and Open Trot, respectiviely, by the same neck margin, while Forest Vic A (Steve Smith) stuck his nose out at just the right moment in the Open Handicap Pace.

Stonebridge Kisses--back here for the first time since mid-November--survived a protracted, first-over effort to grind by 2-5 favorite Miss Galvinator A (Stephane Boichard) in the distaff derby, winning in 1:54.3. Benear (Jeff Gregory), Dolcezza A (Eric Abbatiello) and last week\'s leading lady, Best Chance Hanna (Pat Lachance), rounded out the cashers.

\"Kisses,\" an 8-year-old daughter of Artiscape, paid $8.20 (second choice) for her third win in four seasonal starts. The career earnings now exceed $985,000. Mark Ford trained the winner for owner Martin Scharf.

Stacelita, the all-age track record-holder who won her previous effort here two weeks ago, slipped by pace-setting Sir Valahad (Lachance) to win the weekly marquee trot in 1:58.1. Stan (Jordan Stratton) was third, while Kaline (Smith)--who won this race a week ago--and Tasty Max (Gregory) grabbed the small change.

Stacelita, a 7-year-old Angus Hall lass co-owned by (trainer) Carl Cito Jr. and Ellen Manzi, is now 2-for-3 this season. 

Forest Vic A thoroughly enjoyed his inside assignment in the Open Handicap Pace, sitting chilly before outgaming last week\'s handy winner, Mr. P B N (Abbatiello) by a nose in 1:53.3...matching his previous life best. King Cat Anvil N (Stratton), Third Day (Lachance) and tepid 2-1 favorite Hop Sing (Bouchard) also came away with Empire City coin.

\"Vic,\" a 9-year-old Down Under Troblemaker gelding, returned $10.60 (fourth choice) for his first win in three \'08 tries. Karen Garland trained for co-owners Smith, Bruce Kay and Night Rogue Racing.(Yonkers Raceway)

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