YONKERS, NY, Friday, July 4, 2014-Yonkers Raceway's Friday night $44,000 tri-featured Open Handicaps-a double dose for trotters and one for the pacing ladies-- were won by Coraggioso (, $7.60), Tober ( , $12.80) and Robin Cruiser ( , $30.40).
Coraggioso, ordered outside his seven rivals, saw dysfunction erupt all around him. Half the field-You Rock My World (), Harbor Point (Dan Dube) and ( )-all jumped it off by the time the first turn was done.
That left pole-sitting 8-5 favorite Zooming (Bartlett) on the lead through soft fractions of :28.3 and :59.1. Coraggioso, after settling fourth, engaged Zooming in and out of a 1:27.3 three-quarters. Coraggioso moved to a short lead entering the lane, then held off a stubborn, 41-1 The Triple Lindy (Stratton) by three-quarters of a length in 1:56.2.
Zooming and pair of "recoverers"-My Love Bi and Harbor Point-grabbed the remainder.
For third choice Coraggioso, a 5-year-old homebred/statebred son ofco-owned by Tom Durkin & Joe Spadaro, and trained by , it was his seventh win in 16 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $104.50, with the triple returning $183
The week's other marquee trot unfolded with Tober-perfectly-pocketed from post position No. 2--watching as out-of-town scourge NF Happenstance (Jack Parker Jr.) grabbed the lead and threw down the gauntlet.
"Happenstance," as the 17-10 choice, hung last week's Open Handicap winner Lorenzo Dream (Sears) for his life (:27.2; 56.3; 1:26.2) before that one gave up the ghost.
NF Happenstance was able to win the battle, but lose the war. Tober eased from the two-hole and rolled by, winning by 3Â½ widening lengths in 1:56. Awesome Valley (Goodell) skimmed the cones for second, with a fading NF Happenstance, DW's NY Yank (Brennan) and Bound for Fame (Stratton) rounding out the payees.
For fourth choice Tober, a 6-year-old statebred gelding co-owned by (co-breeder) Kristie Leigh Farm & Joseph Betro and trained by, he's now 7-for-19 this season. The exacta paid $103, the triple returned $348.50 and the superfecta paid $4,409.
The lasses saw Robin Cruiser, from post No. 3, worked out a second-trip behind 13-10 fave Monkey on My Wheel (Sears). That one, from an assigned eight-ball, floated in fifth as Summertime Lea (Brennan) marched around Virgin Mary (Goodell).
After some tepid times of :27.2 of :57.1, Monkey on My Wheel was out, and making steady inroads. "Lea" remained the leader at the 1:24.3 three-quarters, opening to 2Â½ lengths turning for home. However, she began to hit the wall, outgamed by a wide "Robin" in 1:53.1. The margin was a half-length.
Summertime Lead photoed Monkey On My Wheel for second, with Virgin Mary and Fashion Mystery (Carlson) settling for the small change.
For sixth choice Robin Cruiser, a 5-year-old homebred daughter ofowned by Pinske Stable and trained by Ms. Miller, it was her seventh win in 16 seasonal starts (career earning just shy of $1.5 million). The exacta paid $307.50, with the triple returning $631.
Note that Friday's 50-cent Pick 5, with its $25,000 guaranteed pool and $7,500 carryover, attracted $21,304 of Red, White and Blue green. The sequence of 3/8/3/2/5 returned a take-the-day-off $7,826 for each half-a-buck winner.
The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule continues, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily.
by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway