Day At The Track

Blue Chip Matchmaker, Levy finals lead busy Grand Circuit week

02:00 AM 23 Apr 2015 NZST
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The Grand Circuit
The Grand Circuit

This Week: Blue Chip Matchmaker and George Morton Levy series finals and consolations, Yonkers Raceway, Yonkers, N.Y.; Meadows Maturity, The Meadows, Washington, Pa.; W.N. Reynolds Memorial, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J.; and Dexter Cup eliminations, Freehold Raceway, Freehold, N.J.

Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit at Yonkers this week features the $529,000 final and the $100,000 consolation of the George Morton Levy series for open pacers, as well as the $261,000 final and $75,000 consolation in the Blue Chip Matchmaker series for open pacing mares. All four races will take place on Saturday (April 25).

The Meadows on Friday night (April 24) will hold the $51,100 Meadows Maturity for older trotting mares. A field of nine ladies, including 2014 Dan Patch Award winners Shake It Cerry and Classic Martine, will go to the post in the track's ninth race.

Meadowlands Racetrack's first Grand Circuit event of the season will take place on Saturday night (April 25) with the $47,306 W.N. Reynolds Memorial for 3-year-old male pacers.

Freehold Raceway on Saturday afternoon (April 25) will host $40,000 eliminations for the Dexter Cup for 3-year-old open trotters. The $130,000 (est.) Dexter Cup final will be held on Saturday (May 2).

Complete entries for the races can be found by clicking on this link.

Last time: Yonkers Raceway hosted the fifth and final round of the Blue Chip Matchmaker and the George Morton Levy Series this past weekend.

On Friday night (April 17), one $40,000 division of the Blue Chip Matchmaker attracted six ladies, with odds-on Camille (George Brennan, $3) barely holding sway over Krispy Apple (Tim Tetrick) in 1:53. Strings (Eric Carlson) wound up third as the 67-1 rank outsider.

For Camille, a 7-year-old daughter of Camluck co-owned as Burke Racing by trainer Ron Burke, Weaver Bruscemi, M1 Stable and Jack Piatt III, it was her third win in eight seasonal starts (two-for-four in the series).

P H Supercam rallied late to win his Levy Series division in 1:52.3.

No one knows if P H Supercam actually bowls, but he did complete a perfect game Saturday night (April 18). Last season's defending series champ was this season's only perfect preliminary-round participant in Yonkers Raceway's George Morton Levy Memorial Pacing Series. Thus, his score is 300, as in 50 points for each of his four series wins and 25 points for each of his four series appearances.

As a result of his late-frame heroics in the second of round five's three divisions. P H Supercam (Jason Bartlett, $6.80) became harness racing's newest millionaire. P H Supercam went wide late and snapped a stubborn Lucan Hanover (Tim Tetrick) by a head in 1:52.3. Third went to a pocketed Clear Vision (George Brennan).

For P H Supercam, an 8-year-old Million Dollar Cam gelding owned by Bamond Racing and trained by Jeffrey Bamond Jr., it was his sixth win in nine seasonal starts (career 45-for-163) with earnings of $1,012,291.

Odds-on choice Take It Back Terry (George Brennan, $3.40) was both hard-used and solid in the final series prelim event. Seemingly disinterested in leaving until he saw Windsong Jack (Brian Sears) with the same idea, Take It Back Terry then whistled around Westchester in 1:51.4. Domethatgain (Dan Dube) was a second-choice second, beaten 1-3/4 lengths, with Texican N (Eric Carlson) third.

Take It Back Terry, a 6-year-old Western Terror gelding co-owned as Burke Racing by trainer Ron Burke, Weaver Bruscemi, Larry Karr and Phil Collura, is now 5-for-13 this season (three-for-four in the series).

The evening's opening series event was handily won by a first-up favorite Mach It So (Tim Tetrick, $5.20) in 1:52.4. The final margin was 1-1/4 lengths over Dancin Yankee (Brett Miller), with Polak A (Brian Sears) third.

For Mach It So, a 5-year-old Mach Three gelding trained by Jeff Bamond Jr. for owner Bamond Racing, it was his first win in five '15 tries.

Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website.

Grand Circuit Standings: In 2015, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2015 Grand Circuit awards.

Here are the leaders following the past weekend at Yonkers:

Drivers: 1. Jason Bartlett - 101; 2. Daniel Dube - 95; 3. George Brennan - 82; 4. Tim Tetrick - 57; 5. Yannick Gingras - 51.

Trainers: 1. Jeff Bamond Jr. - 127; 2. Ron Burke - 118; 3. Rene Allard - 70; 4. Tony O'Sullivan - 32; 5. Andrew Harris - 26.

Owners: 1. Bamond Racing - 114; 2t. Burke Racing - 27.65; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi - 27.65; 4. Allard Racing - 23.2; 5. Little Bapa - 23.

Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place next weekend at Freehold Raceway, Meadowlands Racetrack, The Meadows and Miami Valley Raceway. Freehold has the Lady Suffolk for 3-year-old filly trotters and the Dexter Cup for 3-year-old open trotters on Saturday (May 2). Meadowlands Racetrack will host the John Simpson Stakes for 3-year-old filly pacers on Friday (May 1) and the John Simpson Stakes for 3-year-old colt pacers on Saturday (May 2). The Meadows will feature the Meadows Maturity Trot for older horses on Saturday (May 2). Miami Valley Raceway features the Miami Valley Distaff for older trotting and pacing mares on Sunday (May 3).

Paul Ramlow

Grand Circuit Publicity Director

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