At first I thought I was watching Space Shuttle make its patented rocket move over the Plainridge racing strip August 30 as Dave McDuffee's Shoobee's Place waltzed to a six-length win in the $10,000 Stan Bergstein harness racing elimination.
Leading driver Jim Hardy took him to the lead and McDuffee's three-year-old pacer never looked back going the mile in a blistering 1:52 The finals will be run on Labor Day with a purse of $25,000 added.
It reminded me of the Shuttle's record pereformance on August 26, 2000 when Walter Case drove hiim to a track record 1:49.3 mark which stood until Maltese Artist bested that time in 2005 clocked in 1:49.2 with Bruce Ranger in the bike.
It was the 'Shuttle' again a year later with his patented speed making the field chase him but rolling to a six length victory in 1:50.3 with David Ingraham driving.
McDuffee has owned many champion standardbreds and in 2007 he was inducted into the New England Harness Writers Hall of Fame. He is regarded as one of New Englands most prominent owners and is a product of Nashua, N.H.
The win upped Shjoobee's Place's (by) earnings in 2010 to $114,681 and makes the R. Nifty Norman trained youngster the one to beat in the September 6 Labor Day final.
The upcoming holiday racinmg card also features the $25,000 final of the Bert Beckwith Memorial Pace, the Legends driving series, memorial races to past racing greats, and a tribute to Joe Hartman who will take his place among the tracks 'Wall of Famers.'
They include Willard and Bert Beckwith, Greg Bowden, Jim Doherty, Bucky Day, Steve O'Toole. Gary Kamal, Jim Morrill Sr., John Hogan, Peter Blood, Ken Heeney, Leigh Fitch,Ted Wing, Bruce Ranger, David Marshall Paul Battis and Elmer Smith.
Post time on Labor Day is 1 p.m.