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Yonkers hosts $166,375 NYSS Art Watson Pace


Yonkers hosts $166,375 NYSS Art Watson Pace
Tuesday, June 16, 2015 - by Frank Drucker, publicity director, Empire City at Yonkers Raceway



Yonkers, NY --- Yonkers Raceway hosted the ladies Monday night (June 15), specifically the $166,375 New York Sire Stakes Art Watson Pace for 3-year-old fillies. Three divisions, at $55,125, $56,125 and $55,125, comprised the event.


Mike Lizzi photo

Band Of Angels was a narrow winner in the opening division.

Band Of Angels (Yannick Gingras, $2.80) won both the draw and the endorsement of the electorate, holding sway (:28.3, :57.3, 1:25.4, 1:54.3) in the opening event. She defeated pocket-sitting Bettorhaveanother (Jim Morrill Jr.) by a half-length, with Divine Caroline (David Miller) third.

For Band Of Angels, a daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven owned by W J Donovan and trained by Ron Burke, it was her second (NYSS) win in four seasonal starts. The exacta paid $6.90, with the triple (three wagering favorites in order) returning $15.40. The seven-horse field nearly finished in odds-ascending order, had 27-1 My Little Delight (sixth) been able to get past 37-1 Bosser's Joy for fifth.

It was essentially the same MO in the second division, as pole-sitting, odds-on favorite Not Before Eight (Scott Zeron, $3.50) was a handy victress.

Away third early, she worked around last season's frosh champ Mosquito Blue Chip (Morrill) after a :27.4 opening quarter-mile. She then led the lasses for the remainder (:57.2, 1:27, 1:55.1), swatting Mosquito Blue Chip by 1-1/2 lengths. First leader Luck Be A Lindy (Mark MacDonald) was third.

Not Before Eight, a Bettor's Delight miss unraced at 2, trained by Steve Elliott for owner Ernest Hartman, is six-for-nine this season and a perfect six-for-six here (first five wins in overnights). The exacta (two choices in order) paid $5.90, with the triple returning $17.40.

Zeron and Elliott doubled their sire stakes pleasure in the final NYSS event when Rock Me Gently ($35.20) -- from post position No. 6 -- rallied from third over. They did so after a front-end battle between 7-10 favorite Bettor N Better (Gingras), She's Heavenly (George Brennan) and a first-up Hipnumberone (Greg Merton).

Those three prompted the pace (:27.1, :55.4, 1:24.4), setting it up for someone to pick them off. It was Rock Me Gently and 46-1 rank outsider Nippy W Hanover (John Campbell) closing from the back in a pedestrian :30.1 final quarter, with the former whipping the latter by a length in 1:55. Third went to Heavenly Bride (Brian Sears).

For sixth choice Rock Me Gently, a daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven co-owned by Old Block Stables, The Fra Stable and Kenneth Klein, it was her third win in six seasonal starts. The exacta paid $786, with the triple returning $2,551.

The Raceway's five-program-per-week schedule is now back in vogue, with first post every Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 p.m., with Tuesday matinees at 1 p.m. (a "French-centric" Tuesday this week). Evening simulcasting accompanies all nighttime programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily.



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