Day At The Track

Marquee treatment for Alwaysalittlemore

10:30 AM 29 Feb 2020 NZDT
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Luke Plano, harness racing
Luke Plano drives Alwaysalittlemore
Dee Leftwich photo

Alwaysalittlemore, a dominating front-end victress the last time the top harness racing pacing fillies and mares got together, gets the marquee treatment in Saturday evening's $6,700 main event at Cal Expo Harness.

The Filly and Mare Open will go as the third on an 11-race Watch and Wager LLC card that gets underway at 6:10 p.m.

Alwaysalittlemore is a 6-year-old daughter of Always A Virgin who carries the banner of Maria Alvarez and Terrence Smith with Edward Hernandez training and Luke Plano once again at the helm.

The hard-knocking bay miss closed out 2019 with romping conditioned victory and has ended up in the charmed enclosure following three of her six trips to the post this season. She recently went over the $100,000 earnings mark and set her 1:52 3/5 standard here on January 18.

Her most recent appearance came two weeks ago in the Distaff Open and she made 3-1 look like a gift as she made every pole a winning one with Plano while coming to the wire with four and a half lengths on her nearest rival.

Taking her on are Royal Mistress, Dancingonthesand, Delightfully Wild, Virgin Eyes and Surprisingly Sweet.

James Marshall IV charting his course

James Marshall IV is another new face in the driver's room here this season, with the highlight thus far being his Open victories behind the Jenna Cornelison-trained Bright Your Life.

"I got the opportunity to drive for Jenna and I wanted to see California," said the 34-year-old New Jersey native.

Even though James came to the sport full time at a bit older age that many, he certainly has a harness racing pedigree as his mother and father are heavily involved as were his paternal grandparents.

"I've driven over different-sized tracks, but I would have to see I prefer the mile ones like Cal Expo because those are the tracks I've raced over the most," he noted.

"Having said that, just give me an inside post and I'm happy to be driving over any size."

The biggest change for James has been driving mostly pacers, where he previously did a lot of his steering behind the trotting set, including several Billings competitions.

The 7-year-old pacing mare Brighten Your Life has certainly been the highlight to this point in the stand, including a coast-to-coast victory on January 10 over the best disaffers on the grounds.

By Mark Ratzky, for Cal Expo Harness















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