Day At The Track

Northern Companion wins 50th

05:16 PM 13 Mar 2017 NZDT
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First Of Itskind
First Of Itskind, driven by Mike Simons, took top honors in Pompano Park’s Open Handicap Pace on Sunday night in 1:50.4.
Skip Smith Photo
Pompano Beach, FL...March 12, 2017...First Of Itskind, handled by Mike Simons, took full advantage of a sizzling :25.4 opening panel by the favored Sing For Me George (Kevin Wallis) and wore that one down in the final stages to score a repeat harness racing  win in Pompano Park's $12,000 Open Handicap Pace on Sunday night (March 12.)

The winner's margin was 1¼ lengths at the end of the 1:50.4 mile with Rockntouch (Mickey McNichol) third, 3¾ lengths away.

Bluehourpower was fourth while Buddha Blue Chip picked up the nickel in the classy sextet.

At the outset, Sing For Me George, off as 3 to 5, zipped off the wings and blazed through the first quarter in that aforementioned :25.4.

While a :29.3 breather left Sing For Me George in front half way through the mile in :55.2, First Of Itskind, away fourth, was on the move and able to sprint to within 2½ lengths of the leader.

On the backside, First Of Itskind kept grinding forward, denting a :27.2 third panel and moving within 1½ lengths of the leader turning for home.

In the lane, First Of Itskind, kept gnawing away, finally getting to the front a sixteenth from home and widening the margin to the line.

After the race, driver Mike Simons related, "I remember driving this horse a couple of years ago and, if I recall, the track was very heavy that day and he had an outside post, so he didn't do too well.

"Jason (trainer Robinson) said he was very strong in winning his last start and can brush pretty good.

"He certainly did that tonight because he just had real good determination and didn't give up, even though he was out pretty much the entire last lap.

"He went a very courageous mile."

Trained by Robinson for owner Robert Main, First Of Itskind, a six year-old gelded son of Western Terror, pushed his 2017 scorecard to 3-1-2 in seven starts, good for $22,140.

Lifetime, First Of Itskind won for the 19th time in 98 starts and now shows a career bankroll of $188,941.

Off as the 8 to 5 second choice, First Of Itskind paid $5.20 to his faithful.

In other action, Northern Companion, a winning fixture here at Pompano Park over the past several seasons, reached a milestone on Sunday night by winning for the 50th time during his brilliant career.

The now nine year-old gelded son of Cambest, purchased for $8,500 from an Ohio sale back in 2011, Northern Companion has been a resident of the Howard Klohr Stable since then and has 40 of his 50 wins at Pompano Park.

Sunday night's win, in a conditioned event was his first of the year in two starts and pushed his career bounty to $327,238.

He raced this night under the banner of the Delray Duo Stable and returned $19.80 to win.

Racing continues on Monday night with a Sunday Pick-5 carryover of $5,264 spawning a $25,000 guaranteed pool. The Monday Pick-5 kicks off with race one.

The track is also offering a $10,000 guarantee on the Pick-4, conducted on races 5 through 8.

Pompano Park's Pick-6 also went unscathed on Sunday night and has a carryover of $3,661 going into the Monday program.

Post time is 7:20 p.m.

by John Berry for Pompano Park

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