Day At The Track

Super season for 70 year old continues

04:59 AM 11 Sep 2015 NZST
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Gerry Longo
Gerry Longo

COLUMBUS, MN. - There's no point telling 70-year-old Gerry Longo to slow down. Since his days as a track and football star on his high school teams in southern California, Longo has been running on all cylinders...and with no intention of slowing down! Of course that includes his long and storied harness racing career, now almost a half-century old, in which he has won 2718 races as a driver and 628 since they started keeping trainers statistics in 1991.

Longo scored a hat trick on the Wednesday (September 9) program to bring his 2015 win total to 52 in 52 nights at Running Aces this season, moving him into fourth place in the local dash derby. All three winners were from his own ten-horse training stable bringing that total to 31 triumphs in the last three months in Minnesota-good for $115,000 in earnings.

Kiss On The Lips, a five-year-old Dontgetinmyway daughter owned by Longo, captured the featured $9600 Fillies and Mares Open Pace with a narrow 1:54.3 score over Part Time Lady (Steve Wiseman) and Dream Roll (Nick Roland). Using a perfect pocket trip to full advantage, Longo zoomed his winning charge up the passing lane for her fourth seasonal victory and second at the top distaff level.

Longo also captured a $6600 conditioned pace with Place At The Beach, a recent private purchase of his who has now reeled off five consecutive wins and stamped herself as one of the favorites for the $11,000 Minnesota State Championship race for older state-bred mares on Saturday (September 12). The five-year-old daughter of Place To Be topped Captiva Bounty (Brian Detgen) and High Bet Hanover (Tim Maier).

Midnight Destroyer, a bottom claimer, was Longo's other winner topping Frankthebank (Tim Maier) and Yankee Flyer (Luke Plano). The seven-year-old gelding is approaching $100,000 in lifetime earnings for owner Peg Hoffman.

Over $200,000 in purses will be awarded on the closing night program at Running Aces on Saturday, featuring eight $21,000 championship races for juveniles and a trio of $11,000 races for the best older Minnesota-breds at the meet.

Gregg Keidel

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