Day At The Track

118 to 1 shocker at Pompano Park

04:28 AM 24 Feb 2016 NZDT
Comment (...) Tweet Share Email Print
Royal Max
Royal Max, handled by Joe Pavia, Jr., scored a three-peat in the $15,000 Open Handicap Trot
Skip Smith Photo

There was a "little" something for everyone on Tuesday night at Pompano Park-fast miles, favorites and longshots-and there will be some "big" somethings when the South Florida oval hosts its Wednesday night harness racing program.

First, Royal Max scored a "three-peat" victory in Pompano Park's $15,000 Open Handicap Trot and tacked on a new lifetime mark, as well-1:53.2.

The five year-old son of RC Royalty, with Joe Pavia, Jr. in the bike this night, was used hard gaining the top spot through an opener of :26.4 before yielding to the track recording holding mare Oho Diamond, handled by Wally Hennessey, who guided his charge halfway through the mile in :55.4.

On the backside, Pavia was on the move again with Royal Max and he took command and opened some daylight heading into the far turn and by the third station in 1:23.3 In the lane, Oho Diamond cut into the margin but really never threatened the winner, finishing a length away.

She's All In (Rick Plano) finished third while Sailer Eddie and Uriel completed a "barber pole" 5-4-3-2-1 finish.

Trained by Chris Oakes for owner Albert Crawford, the lightly raced gelding won for the third time in four starts this year, sending his seasonal bankroll to $26,250. He's now 11 for 30 lifetime, good for $168,200.

In a post-race interview, driver Joe Pavia, Jr. said, "This is the first time I drove this horse, so I didn't really know what to expect other than Chris (trainer Oakes) saying he was real good right now.

"Boy, was he ever! I thought that opener might take some sting out of him but, when we straightened out on the backside, it seemed like he was 'begging' to go. Chris said that I'd like him.

"That was an understatement. I LOVE him!"

Off at 1 to 5 on the tote-board, Royal Max paid $2.60 to his multitude of backers.

The Tuesday night program also featured yet another race for the "senior citizens" in the trotting ranks with the "Over The Hill Gang" event for nine year-olds and up and, once again, the "two" senior citizens in the group-one of the equine kind and the other of the human kind-captured the event.

Celtic Merchant, the amazing 13 year-old gelded son of Angus Hall, with 64 year-old Rick Plano in the bike, scored his second straight win and fourth in his past five starts with a handy score in 1:56.3.

I'll Tell You What, handled by Dave Ingraham, closed with ferocity to finish second while the pacesetting Smokin Dabra, with John MacDonald driving, picked up show honors after slicing off panels of :27.3; :58 and 1:27.1.

Thekeptman was fourth and Gimme The Loot picked up the nickel in the field of nine.

In this very deep field with the nine starters accounting for close to 300 wins and almost $3 million in earnings, Celtic Merchant won for the fourth time this semester in seven starts and 46th time career-wise with this victory sending his lifetime earnings to $357,856.

As the 5 to 2 second choice, Celtic Merchant paid $7.80 to win.

It was, as track announcer Gabe Prewitt said, "bombs away" in the pentafecta fourth race as Certain Potential, driven by Sergio Corona, closed fastest of all to score a photo finish win in 1:56.1

This six year-old gelded son of Jailhouse Jesse, off at 118 to 1, scored his first win of the year in five starts-13th score lifetime-and paid $238.00 to win, keying a $638 exacta with the even money favorite second, and a $4,762.60 trifecta.

The victory left the pentafecta unscathed with a $4,466 carry-over spawning a $15,000 guarantee for Wednesday night's fourth race pentafecta pool.

The "bombs away" payoff also left no live tickets going into the final leg of the Pick-5 and that carry-over is $7,749 going into the mid-week program.

Wednesday's Pick-5 pool at Pompano is guaranteed at $30,000.

Post time is set for 7:30 p.m.

by John Berry for Pompano Park

Comment (...) Tweet Share Email Print

Read More News About...

Stallion Name

Next article: