Day At The Track

Grand Circuit at Philadelphia, Red Mile

02:14 AM 03 Oct 2019 NZDT
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This Week: John Simpson Memorial, Harrah's Philadelphia, Chester, Pa.; and Red Mile Grand Circuit, The Red Mile, Lexington, Ky.

Schedule of events: Grand Circuit harness racing action begins this week on Wednesday (Oct. 2) at Harrah's Philadelphia with three $30,000 divisions in the John Simpson Memorial for 3-year-old filly pacers and three $30,000 divisions in the John Simpson Memorial for 3-year-old filly trotters. On Sunday (Oct. 6) Harrah's Philadelphia will offer the $75,000 (est.) John Simpson Memorial races for 2-year-old male pacers and trotters.

The second week of Grand Circuit action at The Red Mile kicks off on Thursday (Oct. 3) with three divisions in the $276,300 International Stallion Stake for 2-year-old colt trotters. The Friday (Oct. 4) card features four divisions in the $290,200 International Stallion Stake for 2-year-old filly trotters and two divisions in the $239,000 International Stallion Stake for 2-year-old filly pacers. On Saturday (Oct. 5) The Red Mile will host the $350,000 (est.) International Stallion Stake for 2-year-old colt pacers, the $275,000 (est.) Glen Garnsey Memorial for 3-year-old filly pacers and a pair of $150,000 (est.) Allerage races for open pacers and open trotters. On Sunday (Oct. 6), The Red Mile will offer the $500,000 (est.) Kentucky Futurity, the third leg of Trotting's Triple Crown for 3-year-olds, the companion $300,000 (est.) Kentucky Filly Futurity for 3-year-old filly trotters, the $450,000 (est.) Tattersalls Pace for 3-year-old colt pacers, and $85,000 (est.) Allerage races for older pacing mares and older trotting mares.

Complete entries for the races are available at this link.

Last time: Manchego not only won the $171,250 Dayton Trotting Derby over a talented field of older male trotters, but the 4-year-old daughter of Muscle Hill obliterated the Hollywood Dayton Raceway track record and established a new world record for trotting mares on a five-eighths-mile oval with a 1:50.1 score on Friday (Sept. 27).

Manchego broke the Hollywood Dayton Raceway track record and established a new world record for trotting mares on a five-eighths-mile oval in the $171,250 Dayton Trotting Derby. Conrad photo.

Driver Dexter Dunn left the gate alertly and Manchego sped to the lead and showed her heels to the field through :26.3, :54 and 1:22.2 intervals. Widening her lead with every stride the $1.8 million winner increased her commanding margin to nine lengths at the culmination of her record setting mile. Sent off as the second choice on the toteboard, Manchego bested Fiftydallarbill (Tim Tetrick) and I Know My Chip (Jeremy Smith) and paid $5.80.

Nancy Johansson trains Manchego for owner Black Horse Racing.

Jimmy Freight (Scott Zeron) upset a field that included five millionaires to capture the $151,750 Dayton Pacing Derby. The 10-1 longshot topped McWicked (Brian Sears) and Western Fame (Dan Noble) by 1-1/4 lengths in 1:48.3.

Western Fame made the pace through :26.1, :53.3 and 1:20.4 splits before McWicked came calling around the final bend with Jimmy Freight in tow. This Is The Plan (Yannick Gingras) joined the trio of combatants and it looked like anybody's race until Jimmy Freight pulled away in deep stretch.

"I was hoping I could follow McWicked in this race and it worked out perfect," said Zeron in the winner's circle. "Scott DiDomenico does a great job with this horse and I'm real happy for owner Adriano Sorella, who was here tonight."

Jimmy Freight returned a $23.20 mutuel.

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

Grand Circuit Standings: In 2019, 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 2019 Grand Circuit awards.

Here are the leaders following this past weekend:

Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 1,050.5; 2. Yannick Gingras - 898; 3. David Miller - 687; 4. Dexter Dunn - 646; 5. Andrew McCarthy - 539.

Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 943; 2. Tony Alagna - 588; 3. Marcus Melander - 414; 4. Ake Svanstedt - 412; 5. Nancy Johansson - 351.

Owners: 1. Brad Grant - 197.6; 2. Fashion Farms - 194.5; 3. Burke Racing Stable - 184.8; 4. Courant Inc. - 172.5; 5. Weaver Bruscemi - 167.3.

Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place next week at Yonkers Raceway, Harrah's Philadelphia, Northfield Park and The Meadowlands. Yonkers will offer the Yonkers International Trot at Empire City Casino for free-for-all trotters; Harrah's Philadelphia will host the John Simpson Stakes for 2-year-old filly pacers and trotters; Northfield will host the Courageous Lady for 3-year-old filly pacers; and The Meadowlands will feature the fourth leg of the Kindergarten Series for 2-year-olds of both sexes and gaits.

by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit

 

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