Day At The Track

Fastest 3yo trotter of the year so far

09:00 AM 30 Mar 2019 NZDT
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Harrah's Philadelphia
Harrah's Philadelphia

CHESTER PA - The most impressive winner on Friday afternoon's 2019 harness racing opener at Harrah's Philadelphia didn't come in the race with the biggest purse - but any time you can call yourself the fastest three-year-old trotter in all of North America, regardless of size of track, you deserve to be at the front of the story.

Capt Chaps Hanover was sent to the lead in his maiden trotting event by driver Yannick Gingras. He got the lead in 27.4, rated the half to 58.4, then threw in successive 28.2 back quarters to complete the mile in 1:55.3 - faster than any sophomore has gone so far anywhere in the United States and Canada.

The 7 ¾-length winner certainly had the pedigree to produce such a mile - an altered son of Explosive Matter whose second dam was the producer of $1M-winning Hez Striking - and he certainly had the backing - trainer Ron Burke and the ownership combine of Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Frank Baldachino, and J&T Silva - Purnel & Libby, most of whom were the team behind 2017 Horse of the Year Hannelore Hanover.

Just a tick behind Capt Chaps Hanover was another three-year-old trotter, the Yankee Glide gelding Blue And Bold, who made every pole a winning one while reducing his mark three seconds to 1:55.4, last half 57.1. Trained by Andrew Harris for A Harris Racing LLC and April Campbell, the frontstepping winner followed the trend of most of the card's successful horses - from which it can be inferred that it was a good day for driver George Napolitano Jr., who had four winners as he opened defense of his sulkysitting crown.

The biggest purse contest of the day was a $16,000 trotting event, taken in wire-to-wire fashion by the Dejarmbro gelding Icingon De Cupcake, who teamed with George Napolitano Jr. to withstand Armagedon Seelster by a nose in 1:56.2. Owned by Dynasty Racing, Icingon De Cupcake proved to be the third winner of the day for trainer Nick Surick.

Racing resumes on Sunday at Harrah's Philadelphia, with a 12-race card set to start at 12:40 p.m.

PHHA / Harrah's Philadelphia

Jerry Connors

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