Day At The Track

Stakes quartet tops closing night card

05:49 AM 18 Aug 2010 NZST
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Shark Gesture
Shark Gesture
Lisa Photo

The $702,500 William R. Haughton Memorial, the richest event for older pacers, headlines the final harness racing card of Meadowlands Racetrack's January-August harness meet on Friday night (August 20).

The race shares the spotlight with the $473,000 Woodrow Wilson and $402,400 Sweetheart for 2-year-old pacers and $257,000 Golden Girls for pacing mares. A $109,462 Pick Six carryover tops the betting action on the program. The night kicks off with Winners At The Wedge, sponsored by Biggie's Clam Bar, at 6:30 p.m. Handicapping tips, prize drawings and a meet-and-greet with a leading driver and trainer are all on tap. First race post time is 7 p.m.

Shark Gesture, the 2009 Haughton winner, will defend his title from post nine with George Brennan at the lines in the eighth race feature. After an uncharacteristic loss in the US Pacing Championship on Hambletonian Day, Shark Gesture bounced back to win the $50,000 Haughton prep in 1:49 on August 20. The 7-year-old horse, trained by brothers Larry and Ray Remmen, enters the Haughton Final with a 2010 record of six wins and three seconds in nine starts. Shark Gesture scored his second straight win in the Graduate earlier this season. The $2.4 million earner is owned by Norman and Gerald Smiley and TLP Stable.

Shark Gesture’s younger brother, Shark Ingested, is one of two colts that will represent the Remmens in the Woodrow Wilson for freshman colt pacers. A $110,000 yearling purchase, Shark Ingested won a division of the Niatross Stake in 1:53.2 before finishing second in the Wilson elimination on August 13. He drew post seven in the Wilson and will also be piloted by Brennan. His stablemate, Mcsocks, was a $48,000 acquisition by the Remmens at the Tattersalls Sale on August 1 at the Meadowlands. Mcsocks will leave from post 10 with John Campbell at the lines. The Wilson field also includes elimination winner Powerful Mist, who owns two straight 1:51.4 clockings for trainer Wayne Givens, and Fashion Delight, who posted back-to-back wins in 1:51.2 for trainer Jim Campbell before accepting a bye into the final.

Ace Of Pace looms the one to beat in the Sweetheart Final for 2-year-old fillies. The Mark Ford trainee is perfect in four career starts and counts the Debutante, Countess Adios and New Jersey Sire Stakes Championship among those wins. She will start from post seven, also with the services of Brennan.

The Golden Girls features a well-matched field of 11 pacing mares, including Lady Liberty winner On The Glass and Ginger And Fred from the Burke barn, and the duo of Southwind Tempo and Tug River Princess, trained by Jeff Webster.

The Friday card marks the last night of the Meadowlands' main meet. Harness racing will return on weekends in the fall beginning October 23.

The field for the William R. Haughton Memorial:

1, Real Joke, Tim Tetrick, Lou Pena

2, Won The West, David Miller, Ron Burke

3, Bettor Sweet, John Campbell, Thomas Cancelliere

4, Hypnotic Blue Chip, Jody Jamieson, Kevin Mc Dermott

5, Oliver Cleo, Brian Sears, Lou Pena

6, Mr Wiggles, Andy Miller, George Teague Jr

7, Vintage Master, Daniel Dube, Jimmy Takter

8, Foiled Again, Yannick Gingras, Ron Burke

9, Shark Gesture, George Brennan, Larry Remmen

Amy SILVER

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