The betting public was in his corner and why shouldn't they be? After all, Alan Schwartz is one of the best harness racing amateur drivers in recent history. And when you factor in a good post position (#2) and a good horse-Iroquouindianmagic- with two wins and a second in his last three starts, it was no wonder.
It was no wonder that the bettors sent him off as the favorite in the North American Amateur Drivers Association’s Trot at Monticello Raceway on April 26.
And Schwartz didn’t disappoint. He sat a pocket trip behind pace-setter Beach Vacation and driver Bob Krivelin and when they two headed for home it was all Schwartz and Iroquouindianmagic as they trotted away from Beach Vacation and went on to a three- length triumph in a 2:01.1 clocking. Tremendous Hit and Bob Hechkoff took home the show dough in that one.
“Tony (Verruso with Majestic Man) had the rail and his horse went away running but I was lucky to get around him with only minimal trouble,” Schwartz related. “Heading to the quarter Bobby (Krivelin with Beach Vacation) began to get away a bit so I closed the gap. I followed him and when we approached the three quarters I felt that Hechkoff (with Tremendous Hit) and Yarock (with Rompaway Alvin) were out of it and I knew my horse would run down Bobby’s ….and that just what he did.”
Schwartz has been red-hot of late, especially for an amateur driver who has done so well competing against professionals. His 29 wins in 94 starts against the pros attests to that, and perhaps that it the motivation that gave the bettors confidence in Schwartz’s trotter in the all-amateur driver field.
Owned by Schwartz and trained by Raheim Strong, Iroquoindianmagic paid $5.40 for win.
Next Thursday the NAADA Series heads to Freehold Raceway for two weeks and then returns to Yonkers Raceway on May 17 for the $12,000 series finale for drivers who have earned the most points in the series..
by John MANZI