Day At The Track

In the Arsenal wins 25th Art Rooney Pace

06:18 PM 31 May 2015 NZST
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In the Arsenal
In the Arsenal was home free by a cozy margin...until he bore right
Mike Lizzi Photo
In The Arsenal

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, May 30, 2015 - Harness racing favored In the Arsenal (Brian Sears, $2.50, part of entry) prevailed after making it interesting Saturday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's $300,000 final of the Art Rooney Pace.

Eight 3-year-olds-seven colts and one geldings-went postward in the 25th Rooney, which began in 1989, a year after the death of Art Rooney Sr.

In the Arsenal, unhurried early from post position No. 2, saw pole-sitting Rock N' Roll World (Dan Dube) make the first lead before a visit from the winner's entrymate, Betting Exchange (Dave Miler).

That one, denied a an early pocket by the eventual winner made the lead just after a :27.2 opening quarter-mile. In the Arsenal then moved from third, getting around his stable buddy right around the 56-second intermission. Soon after, Arque Hanover (Jason Bartlett) was put in play, going after In the Arsenal toward a 1:24 three-quarters.

In the Arsenal eventually disposed of that one, taking a length lead into the lane. He was home free by a cozy margin...until he bore right a path or so and appeared to pull himself up. Betting Exchange was the main beneficiary, ducking inside to make it close.

Not close enough, however, as In the Arsenal prevailed by a diminishing head in 1:51.2. Betting Exchange made the entry 1-2, with Rock N' Roll World third, beaten a length. Arque Hanover and National Seelster (Eric Carlson) came away with the remainder, with Cartoon Daddy (Mark MacDonald), Bet You (Tyler Buter) and Sonofa Sizzle (George Brennan) completing the order.

For In the Arsenal, a $7,500 "buyback" son of American Ideal trained by Kelvin Harrison for co-owners (breeder) White Birch Farm) and In the Arsenal Racing, it was his third win in as many seasonal starts (career 9-for-14, earnings of $581,843). The exacta (Rock N' Roll World 'second') paid $5.70, with the triple (Arque Hanover 'third') returning $18.

It was Sears' third win in the Rooney, after Badlands Nitro (2008) and Pet Rock (2012, stakes-record 1:51.

"I was thinking about letting (Betting Exchange) in early, but In the Arsenal can grab on a bit, so I kept him going. As far as what happened (with the bolt) late, I have no idea. He gave no inclination, and I have no explanation, other than to say he's learning. Luckily, no one was outside of me."

Frank Drucker

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