Day At The Track

Southwind Storm sweeps PA Stallion Series

01:48 PM 15 Aug 2018 NZST
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Southwind Storm, harness racing
Southwind Storm (#7) and driver Pat Berry hold off Southwind Percy to the wire
Curtis Salonick photo

WILKES-BARRE, PA - Southwind Storm thundered through her Pennsylvania Stallion Series' four preliminary legs undefeated, as the Muscle Hill - Say What filly completed the quarter by winning one of the seven two-year-old trotting filly divisions over "sloppy" going Tuesday at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono.

Pat Berry hustled the Ron Burke trainee to an open length margin during a 27.2 opening quarter and set sail on the lead, and the winner maintained her advantage all the way to the wire, although Southwind Percy charged at her during the last quarter and fell short by only a nose at the end of the 1:58.4 mile. Southwind Storm is owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC, Lawrence Karr, J&T Silva- Purnel & Libby, and Weaver Bruscemi LLC.

Two fillies became two-time StS prelim winners while triumphing. First in that twosome was the Possess The Will - Raising Rachel miss Fashion Rachel, who built up a huge lead then coasted home to be 2½ lengths clear at the wire in 1:58 to equal her mark and post the fastest divisional clocking.

Her connections - driver Mike Simons, trainer Jim Campbell, and the Fashion Farms LLC of newly-installed Hall of Famer Jules Siegel -- had a double on the night, as the Muscle Hill - I'm On Cloud Nine filly Cloud Nine Fashion remained undefeated in three purse starts by making her first Stallion Series effort a winning one in 1:58.4, making a giant recovery from an early miscue to catch When Dovescry by a nose.

The other series doubler also topped a two-win night for the Team Orange Crush of trainer/wife Julie and driver/husband Andy Miller: Cardinale, who lowered her mark to 1:58.4. The Cantab Hall - Mississippi Beauty filly gained command before the quarter and went on to defeat Navarone Hanover, the only other miss with two StS prelim triumphs in to go Tuesday (Fast Reaction sat out the final prelim), by 1¼ lengths for the Andy Miller Stable Inc., Willow Oak Ranch, and Odonnell Equine LLC.

By the way, Cardinale was the second choice and the only non-chalk to win in the seven races - those who say "two-year-old trotting fillies" with a sneer can stand in the corner, reading the program from this night.

The Millers' other winner was PA stakes debutante American Kronos, a Donato Hanover - Glide About filly who brushed to the lead by going her own third quarter in 28.2, finishing out in 1:58.3 to tie her race mark and remained undefeated in two purse contests for Marvin Katz, Al Libfeld, and D. David Goodrow.

The other two stakes siring credits went to Cantab Hall, giving him three on the night. One was Fraulein Blucher, whose dam was Frau Blucher, one of only two horses to win $500,000 strictly in PA Sire Stakes competition (the other was Wild Honey).

Fraulein Bucker scored her first purse triumph in 1:59.1, a half-length ahead of Paint The Corners for driver Anthony Napolitano, trainer Nancy Johansson, and the ownership of Hauser Brothers Racing Enterprises LLC and the Rojan Stables.

Biggest margin of victory was the 3¼ lengths Mimi'spearloflindy had on her competition at the end of her maiden victory in 1:59.1. Brian Sears was in the sulky behind the Cantab Hall - Lindy's Showgirl distaff for trainer Marcus Melander and Holly Lane Stud East LLC.

The Harness Bureau of the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission is the official keeper of PA-sired competition points, but an unofficial tally of the standings after the races yielded these ten as the leading pointwinners: 1. Southwind Storm, 2. Navarone Hanover, 3. Fast Reaction, 4. Paint The Corners, 5. (tie) Chanel De Vie and Southwind Percy, 7. Wildfire Seeslter, 8. (tie) Cardinale and Fashion Rachel, 10. (tie) I'mallthatmatters and Lollipop Lindy.

There is of course the possibility that one or more of the top horses may not declare in for the Championship, and the horses "on the bubble" do have the prospect of a consolation race at Harrah's Philadelphia on Labor Day if enough fillies declare in.

From the PHHA/Pocono Downs

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