An early dogfight between Sheer Action and Sumatra proved to be a major benefit for Sarcastic Man as he pulled up an upset victory at odds of 12-1 in capturing the $38,460 Dexter Cup Trot elimination at Freehold Raceway Saturday.
The first harness racing Grand Circuit test for three-year-old colts saw nine starters go to post to eliminate just one horse from next week’s final. And right from the start you knew the winner was going to pay a price as the even money favorite, Well Built, was off-stride right at the start.
The action was fast and furious early on as Sumatra (Brian Sears) went to the early lead but was immediately challenged on the outside by Sheer Action (Jeff Gregory) and those two went head and head to the opening quarter mile in :29.3. Sarcastic Man, driven by Ron Pierce, had left from post seven and tucked away in fourth position and King City (David Miller) was in the garden spot behind Sumatra.
To the half mile in :59.3, Sheer Action continued to race first-over against Sumatra and eventually cleared to the lead in the backstretch and held the lead at the three-quarter mile marker in 1:59.2 as Pierce came first-over with Sarcastic Man with King City following them second-over.
Then as they came down the stretch, Sheer Action faded as Sarcastic Man had the race in hand and went on to win by one and one-quarter lengths with King City second and Sumatra third. Everyone in the race except for Well Built returns for the $115,370 final next Saturday.
For Sarcastic Man, a homebred son of Tom Ridge, it was his third win this year after twelve starts for trainer Gail Wrubel and owner/breeder Robert Key of Leechburg, PA. His time of 1:59.2 was a lifetime mark. Sarcastic Man paid $26.40 to win.
By Steve Wolf, for harnesslink.com