Day At The Track

Vari Forgetful shows she still has the stuff

06:54 AM 22 Jan 2015 NZDT
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Bruce Clarke
Bruce Clarke
Crystal View Photography

Those who remembered that Vari Forgetful was once a very good trotting mare have been rewarded to the tune of 58-1 and 14-1, respectively, in her last two trips to the post for harness racing driver/trainer Bruce Clarke.

The 6-year-old homebred daughter of Armbro Variable carries the banner of Jack Coffey and has over $105,000 in her bank account with a 1:56 4/5 mark that was established at Pompano Park two years ago.

That said, she did come into her January 11 assignment off a series of less-than-stellar efforts and had the 9 post to boot that night. No problem, as Vari Forgetful left into a stalking position and motored by everyone for the $119 shocker. Last week from the cozy rail, she did a curtain call at nearly 15-1 under Clarkes direction, again winning easily.

Shes always been a very nice mare, but just like last year, it took her awhile to come around at this meet, her mentor noted. It was actually my fault the first couple of starts here because I should have changed her shoeing, then the race before her first win she had the second tier and got run into and lost any chance.

Even though she had the 9 hole for that race two back, she had been training very well and were able to leave into a good spot. She finished strongly, and no question it helped that was in pretty cheap.

While the 58-1 odds that evening didnt seem out of line, Bruce did say he was surprised she was such a big number in last weeks outing, especially considering she was moving from the 9 slot to the rail.

I told the owner I thought she couldnt get beat in there because she was definitely back to her old self, Clarke said. With the inside, the plan was to float out of there and sit in the two or the three hole, and thats exactly how it worked out.

El Azteca, Its Not Over head marquee

El Azteca and Its Not Over, who have divided up the eight clashes at the head of their class at this meeting, are spotlighted in Fridays Open Trot.

A 10-race card is on tap with first post at 6:40 p.m. and racing will be conducted this week under the Watch and Wager LLC banner on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights.

A reminder that through the month of January, the guarantee on the low-takeout Pick 4 has been raised to $30,000. The Pick 4 is one of four wagers offered each night with the reduced 16% takeout rate, the others being the Pick 5, the Jackpot 6 and the Hi 5.

El Azteca has prevailed in the last two Open Trots for his owner/trainer/breeder Marco Rios and pilot James Kennedy. He comes into this assignment with $134,000 with a 1:54 3/5 career standard that was established last year at Hoosier Park in Indiana.

In the most recent clash, El Azteca left into a stalking position for Kennedy, brushed to the lead turning for home and proved clearly best by two and a half lengths that evening. He has been assigned the outside slot in the field of five.

Its Not Over is 5-year-old son of Panama Hanover who carries the banner of Richard Dryden and Debra Budahn with Bob Johnson the conditioner and Chip Lackey in his usual position in the sulky.

Its Not Over made his most recent trip to the winners circle following the December 27 Open Trot, lost his best chance with an early break in the next appearance and then checked in second behind his arch-rival at most recent asking. Winsom Kelly, A Crown For Lindy and Franks Best complete the field.

By Mark Ratzky, publicity Cal Expo Harness









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