Day At The Track

Panspacificflight freshman debut as winners

07:13 AM 26 Jun 2010 NZST
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Panspacificflight started his harness racing career by winning his first four starts as a two-year-old and finishing his first season of racing with seven victories in nine starts. He went on to win an elimination round of the North American Cup and finished third in the final. The Panderosa foal earned more than $360,000 in only three years of racing.

Not only was Panspacificflight a tremendous pacer, he looks to be a fine sire as well. Friday, June 25 marked the second night of racing for two-year-olds at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino and the first for pacers. Panspacificflight offspring fared well, earning a total of $29,700.

In the first race, Skyway Flight took home the top prize by winning the first leg of the $15,000 Sandra Lil Series. The daughter Panspacificflight had the fastest time of the field, qualifying in 1:58.3 and didn't disappoint the handicappers, who made her the favorite at the gate.

Skyway Flight earned her first win by the margin of a three and one-quarter lengths over Six Mile Annie and Dan Shetler. An Amazing Smile and Sam Widger finished third.

Skyway Flight was one of premier yearlings at the Hoosier Classic Yearling Sale in 2009. The Burke Racing Stable bought the filly for $12,000. They are satisfied with the purchase thus far.

"She (Skyway Flight) is such a nice horse to work with," said Jamie Rucker, who oversees the horses for Ron Burke at Hoosier Park. "She does everything you want her to do and has a great attitude in the barn as well."

Driver Ricky Macomber Jr. didn't exactly get the trip he wanted with Skyway Flight. Luckily, the filly had what it took to beat out the field, pacing the final quarter in :29.2 to finish the mile in a career best time of 1:58.0.

"We didn't want to race her on the front end, but the field went pretty good and then shut down at the first quarter pole," said Macomber. "I moved her then, and she closed strong at the end. We just took what we could get."

On a night where the babies competed in every other race, it was again another Panspacificflight two-year-old that found the winner's circle in the third race. Acadian Flight outpaced Red Scooter and fellow Panspacificflight foal Paco Labrook to reach the wire first.

Shetler drove Red Scooter straight to the front and kept him there the entire race until the final eighth of a mile. Unfortunately, the colt could not hang on down the stretch as Acadian Flight and Peter Wrenn flew past to finish first in a time of 1:56.2.

"He (Acadian Flight) is a little green, but he has a lot of natural talent," said Wrenn. "He has a nice gait and felt like a nice horse right away."

Paco Labrook and Trace Tetrick beat out Red Scooter in the final feet to earn the place finish in the first leg of the $15,000 Abercrombie Series. Red Scooter, a son of I Scoot Hanover, is a home-bred chestnut gelding from one of trainer Jerry Smith's Storm Damage mares. Smith, who co-owns the colt with his daughter, Christine Hecht, was the owner and trainer of Storm Damage, who was a standout two and three-year-old in the early 1980s and went on to be a proven sire. Smith trained his last foal of Storm Damage last year, Get ‘Er Done, who is an Indiana-sired product that dominated stakes last year at Hoosier Park.

The ninth race yielded yet another winner sired by Panspacificflight. Ron's Blue Angel had a well-driven trip by Rick Farrington to earn her first career trip to the winners' circle. The Ron Pearson trained filly went to the front from the gate but lost the front spot at the first quarter pole as Maybeltr Bluegrass took the lead. Farrington kept her in good position to make a move in the final quarter and did just that, outpacing Radar Contact and Mark O'Mara by a head to win. Sam Widger behind Surprisingly Sweet finished third.

Other Panspacificflight foals finishing in the money Friday night include Firstclassflight and Pacific Sun Rae both finishing fifth in race one and race nine, respectively. Also, Honor Flight and Abbers Firstflight took the fourth and fifth spots in the 13th race as well.

The first crop sired by Panspacificflight is off to a good start. Only time will tell just how good his foals can be. Keep your eye out for these two-year-olds. Winning obviously runs in the bloodlines.

By Seth Konkle

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