If I Can Dream rolls in $421,850 Art Rooney

04:20 AM 14 Jun 2009 NZST
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If I Can Dream Not Enough
If I Can Dream
Mike Lizzi Photo
Not Enough
Mike Lizzi Photo

If I Can I Dream received Yonkers Raceway help he probably didn't even need Saturday night, then rolled in the $421,850 Art Rooney Pace. The son of Western Hanover, driven by George Brennan, was the handiest of winners in the 19th edition of the Rooney, one of Yonkers' premier events for 3-year-old colts.

If I Can Dream defeated Fireintheshark (Jason Bartlett) by three lengths, negotiating the mile in 1:52.1 over a "good" surface. Monkey Off My Back (Cat Manzi) was third, another four lengths in arrears .

Leaving from penultimate post position No. 6, If I Can Dream was put in play early, He made an immediate lead, looping 2-5 favorite Hypnotic Blue Chip (Jeff Gregory, subbing for Tim Tetrick).

If I Can Dream stung the people's choice before letting him go just after a :27.3 opening quarter-mile. A "Hypnoitic" half of 55.2, then a 1:23.4 three-quarters while Barber Pole (Jordan Stratton) offered minimal first-up pressure.

With If I Can Dream hermetically sealed to the back of the leader, Hypnotic Blue Chip ended any suspense by jumping it off in the final turn.

If I Can Dream blew right by, widening to the wire. Venice Menace (Dave Palone) and Mobile (Jim Morrill Jr.) earned the final two pay envelopes, with Barber Pole and an off-the-course Hypnotic Blue Chip rounding out the order. the New York-bred Hypnotic Blue Chip was making his first career half-mile oval start.

For If I Can Dream, trained by Tracy Brainard for Bulletproof Enterprises, he returned $7.40 (second choice) for his third win in four seasonal starts. He led a $52.50 exacta and $273 triple.

"I wanted to get my horse involved early, because I knew he could leave the gate," Brennan said. "I figured (Hypnotic Blue Chip) was the one I had to beat.

"I was going by, whether he had made a break or not."

If I Can Dream--who won last season's Matron Stakes a week after a world-record performance in the elims (1:50.4, 2-year-old pacing cotls, five-eighths oval)--now now career earnings nearing $450,000.

Trainer and owner also won Saturday night's $293,970 Lismore Pace with the 3-year-old filly Not Enough.

Not Enough (Morrill Jr.), a $30,000 supplemental entry in this race, was a three-length victress in 1:53.4. She returned $2.90 as part of a favored three-horse entry. Jkmusicofthenite(Stephane Bouchard) and Indulge Me (Mike Lachance) finished second and third, respectively.

Leaving from post No. 7 in the field of eight, Not Enough was out two turns before taking over from Indulge Me well after a :27.2 opening two furlongs. She then found a 56-second intermission and 1:25.3 three-quarters, taking a length-and-three-quarter lead into the lane.

Not Enough was more than good enough from there, expanding her margin to the line. Notjustanoherprettyface (Stratton) and Pumptuous (Bartlett) grabbed the small change.

"She's just very talented," Morilll said. "My original plan was to race her from behind, but when I saw (entrymate Kabbalah Karen B) make a break. I decided to leave. I knew I'd have to work to get the lead, but once I made it, she was strong."

For Not Enough, a daughter of Grimfromeartoear, she improved her perfect '09 resume to 5-for-5. The exacta paid $19.20, with the triple returning $36.40.

Yonkers' regular five-night-per-week schedule (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday) is back in effect, and first post for all racing programs is 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available around the NYRA schedule.

Frank DRUCKER

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