YONKERS, NY, Saturday, July 26, 2014-Sapphire City (Dan Dube) did his damage from off the pace Saturday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's $44,000 Open Handicap Pace.
Forced to change his tact and race from behind, Sapphire City--assigned post position No. 6--saw Heston Blue Chip () have work to get around pole assignee Life Up Front ( ) after a contested :26.2 opening quarter-mile.
From there, a rated :29.1 second interval (:55.3 half) before 9-10 favorite Pancetta () moved from fifth. Sapphire City went along for the toward a 1:23.4 three-quarters.
Pancetta ducked in a quick rest stop when Life Up Front gave up the ghost. However, the leader remained such into the lane, with a length-and-a-quarter advantage in and out of the final turn. Sapphire City angled inside and closed stoutly, whipping Heston Blue Chip by a neck in 1:51.1...a tick of his season's-best.
Pancetta settled for third, with Dream Out Loud N () and P H Supercam ( ) settling for the remainder.
For Sapphire City, a 6-year-oldgelding trained by Paul Blumenfeld for co-owners Centaur Stables and Jordan Sklut, he returned $15.20 (third choice) for his fourth win in 25 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $48, with the triple returning $152.
New York Sire Stakes continue Monday night, with the $226,200 Art Watson Pace (3-year-old fillies).
The Raceway's five-night-per-week live schedule continues, with first post every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all live programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily.
by Frank Drucker, for Yonkers Raceway