BARTLETT SWEEPS PAIR IN 167G NYSS ART WATSON PACE
A first-up Soft Idea ($24.40) just held sway in the opening $83,937 division.
Grabbing an three-hole from post position No. 5, she watched 31-1 proposition Angels Rockn Pink (Mark MacDonald) throw down early intervals of
:28.2 and :57. Mother of Art (Joe Bongiorno), part of a three-headed, 1-20, Ron Burke-trained entry, was away second but decided not to take over from the longshot.
That left Soft Idea a clear path to try it, which she did in and out of a 1:25.3 three-quarters. That one opened 2 1/2 lengths entering the lane and looked to coast.
However, a resurgent "Pink" made up a ton ground late, only miss a neck in 1:54.3. Dime a Dance (Matt Kakaley), trying to salvage some semblance of dignity for the failed entry, was third. Her partners, an eight-ball Art Critic (George Brennan) and a backpedaling Mother of Art, finished seventh and eighth, respectively.
For third choice Soft Idea, an American Ideal filly trained by Linda Toscano for co-owning stable South Mountain, Bay's, Radio Racing and Little E, it was her second win in six seasonal starts. The exacta paid $301.50, with the triple returning $573.
"First-time Lasix and racing her off the helmet made the difference," Bartlett said. "We're trying to get her back to the way she was last season. This was the first step."
As for odds-on Time on My Hands ($3.50), she took it the distance (:28.1, :57.3, 1:26, 1:54.3) from post No. 4 in the second division.
Opening to 3 1/2 lengths in and out of the final turn, she whipped a closing No Clouds Bluechip (Brian Sears) by three-quarters of a length. American Ivy (Andy Miller) couldn't sustain her second move and faded to third.
For Time on My Hands, an American Ideal miss trained by Chris Ryder for co-owners Robert Mondillo, Michael Robinson, Steve Cheatham and BFJ Stable, she's now 4-for-7 this season. The exacta paid $74, with the triple returning $206.50.
As was the case with Soft Idea, this winner was also racing with fresh Lasix, though she had qualified with it.
"The medication helped, and I wanted to give her a safe trip, and it worked out," Bartlett said.
Friday night's $45,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace was won by a cone-skimming Secrets Out N (Bartlett, $33.40) in a life-best 1:52.3.
Stakes action continues Saturday night with the $100,000 Lawrence B. Sheppard (2-year-old colts/geldings).
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