Keeper's Destiny & Fox Valley Iliad feature

04:39 AM 10 Mar 2012 NZDT
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Fox Valley Iliad Keeper's Destiny
Fox Valley Iliad - A 4-year-old son of Vaporize
Tom Berg photo
Keeper's Destiny - Co-owned by (trainer) Casie Coleman and Merlin Howse
Tom Berg Photo

Keeper's Destiny and harness racing driver Eric Goodell, ordered behind a Friday night eight-ball, were sharp in winning Yonkers Raceway's co-featured $33,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace. The 3-2 choice dropped in fourth as Arctic Fire N (James Rattray) led through early fractions of :28.3 and :58.3.

"Keeper" was then out and moving, engaging the leader in and out of the 1:25.4 three-quarters. Arctic Fire N was about to end her evening early in the lane, with Keeper's Destiny taking over.

That one edged away in slow final stanza, defeating a pocket-sitting Kayla's Dream (Mark MacDonald) by a length-and-a-half in 1:55. Fox Valley Sage (Cat Manzi), Ramona Disomma (Jordan Stratton) and Naughytiltheend (Brent Holland) earned the minor spoils.

For Keeper's Destiny, a 6-year-old daughter of Intrepid Seelster co-owned by (trainer) Casie Coleman and Merlin Howse (also the co-breeders), she returned $5.10 for her third win in six seasonal starts. The exacta paid $35.80, with the triple returning $166.50.

Friday night's co-featured $33,000 Open Handicap Trot saw Fox Valley Iliad (Larry Stalbaum) throw down the gauntlet with a life-best effort and the fastest local trotting mile of the season.

Assigned post position No. 5, it was far from an odyssey for "Iliad." He rolled past intervals of :27.1 and :57, all the while parking out last week's winner, H and M's Hit (Stratton). Son of Nordic (Eric Goodell) went behind, then around, that one, as Fox Valley Iliad found three-quarters in 1:27.

Never threatened, he defeated a loose pocket-sitting Flex the Muscle (Jeff Gregory) by 2 1/4 lengths in 1:56. Son of Nordic, Stand Guard (MacDonald) and Schalom G (Cat Manzi) rounded out the payees.

For Fox Valley Iliad, a 4-year-old son of Vaporize co-owned (with Mike Sorentino Jr.) and trained by Stalbaum, he returned $4.40 for his first win in six '12 tries. The exacta paid $36.60, the triple returned $147.50 and the superfecta paid $1,190.

Frank DRUCKER

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