Day At The Track

Aussie import wins first start in USA

05:18 AM 17 Jul 2020 NZST
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Paternity Suit A, harness racing
Paternity Suit A blows by Beachchip Hanover
Tom Melanson photo

Plainville, MA --- After not racing since February 8 at Menangle Park in Australia, Paternity Suit A made his North American harness racing debut a winning one after going from last to first in the $12,000 Winners-Over pace at Plainridge Park on Thursday afternoon (July 16).

Bettors Fire N (Ron Cushing) took the lead before the quarter and stepped off a quick :26.1 panel while the field lined up single file behind him. At the half, JK Will Power (Mitchell Cushing) pulled first over and started his march towards the leader with Beachchip Hanover (Kevin Switzer Jr.) on his back.

Up the backstretch, it was a battle between Bettors Fire N and JK Will Power as they paced side by side past the three-quarters and into the last turn. It was there that Beachchip Hanover tipped three deep in pursuit, but Paternity Suit A (Drew Monti) who had been shuffled to last, tipped four deep as the race spiraled into the stretch and was gaining momentum. Monti tapped the disc and Paternity Suit A responded with a furious stretch drive that launched him past the field to the lead and a victory in 1:53.2.

It was the third win in six starts this year for Paternity Suit A ($9.80), pushing his earnings to $19,776 in 2020. The 7-year-old gelded son of Rock n Roll Heaven is owned by Tony Gruppo and Tim Bojarski and is trained by Scott Rollins.

The fillies and mares also had the spotlight on Thursday with a pair of conditioned events that saw their winners put in strong efforts.

The $12,000 5-year-olds and younger event saw Rockin Ellie (Bruce Ranger) pull from sixth at the three-eighths pole and follow cover until the three-quarters where she tipped three deep into the last turn to run down the race long leader, Maverick Fiber (John Nason) to win by 2-1/2 lengths in 1:54.2.

Rockin Ellie ($5.00) is owned by Just Enough LLC and Michael Girouard, who also trains the winner.

Then the $12,500 Freedom Trail series for resident Plainridge distaff pacers went to Life Isa Shortwalk (Shawn Gray) who went wire to wire from post seven to win by a nose over Avery Seelster (John Nason) in 1:55.4.

Life Isa Shortwalk ($13.60) is owned and trained by Ed Blash.

Several drivers had multiple win efforts on Thursday's card. Drew Campbell led all and registered a driving triple while Nick Graffam, Shawn Gray and Bruce Ranger all visited the winner's circle twice.

Racing resumes on Friday (July 17) at Plainridge Park with a 12-race card that features the $12,000 Winners-Over trot scheduled to go in race five. Post time for the first race is 4 p.m.

By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts
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