Day At The Track

Priceless cruises in seasonal debut

03:32 PM 27 Jun 2020 NZST
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Priceless, harness racing
Priceless cruises in her three-year-old debut in the $30,000 Star Destroyer Stakes
Dean Gillette Photography

ANDERSON, Ind.--June 26, 2020 -- Indiana Sires Stakes Champion Priceless backed up her 1-5 favoritism in the $30,000 Star Destroyer Stakes for harness racing three-year-old pacing fillies to win her seasonal debut at Harrah's Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, June 26. With trainer Brandon Bates in the sulky, Priceless used her customary front stepping tactics to best her rivals in 1:52.

Leaving from post two, Priceless battled with divisional rival Foxy Rigger and Trace Tetrick to the quarter pole in :26. Foxy Rigger got the first call but would yield the lead to Priceless just before the half in :55.1. Priceless cruised to the three-quarters in 1:24.3 and was then joined on the outside by Grace Rocks and LeWayne Miller. Sprinting home in :27.2., Priceless was able to put away Grace Rocks and held off a late surge from a fast closing Sweet Filly and Michael Oosting to get the win by a quarter of a length. Sweet Filly was forced to settle for second while Foxy Rigger rounded out the trifecta. Priceless returned $2.60 to her betting backers.

After winning seven of 11 seasonal starts and $347,162 in her freshman campaign, Priceless is owned by Kevin Miller and Bert Hochsprung. The daughter of Rockin Image-Btwnyurheartnmine is expected to make her next start in the opening round of Indiana Sires Stakes action for three-year-old pacing fillies at Harrah's Hoosier Park on Saturday, July 4.

The evening also featured two $20,000 divisions of the Star Destroyer Stakes for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings. Island Of The Sea and Michael Oosting delivered as the heavy betting favorite in the opening division to stop the timer 1:50.4. Scoring in near gate to wire fashion, Island Of The Sea utilized a :26.4 closing kick to get the win by nearly four lengths. It was the second straight Hoosier Park victory for the gelded son of Always A Virgin-Trinity Island in just three starts this season. Trained by Shane Bowermaster, Island Of The Sea has now earned $36,000 lifetime and is owned by Eric Ell and Lisa Ell.

Island Of The Sea

In the second division for the pacing colts and geldings, Roll With Jr and John DeLong also used a front-stepping effort to find the wire first in 1:51.2 for trainer Jeff Cullipher. Roll With Jr left alertly from post three to dictate fractions of :27.1, :54.3 and 1:23.3. The field was tightly packed turning for home and looked poised to pounce on the leader. Roll With Jr dug in gamely late in the lane to repel a charge from High Impression and Sam Widger to get the win by three parts of a length. In his first start of the season, Roll With Jr recorded the first win of his sophomore campaign and fourth win lifetime. The son of Roll With Joe-No One Is Alone has now bankrolled $176,516 for owners Pollack Racing LLC and Jeff Cullipher.

It was also a big night for veteran driver Sam Widger who won seven of the 14 races on the evening's program. Widger, who finished second in the leading driver standings at Harrah's Hoosier Park in 2019, is currently third on the leading driver standings through nine nights of live racing with 17 wins.

Live racing will continue at Harrah's Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, June 27 with a 14-race card. With a daily post time of 6:30 pm, live racing at Harrah's Hoosier Park will follow a Tuesday through Saturday schedule and be conducted through November 21. For more information on the live racing schedule, please visit www.harrahshoosierpark.com.

Emily Ratcliff

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