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'UNDERCOVER, 'SAPPHIRE' WIN SATURDAY 45G CO-FEATURES
Undercover Strike, from post position No. 5 in the weekly featured trot, closed from third-over in the lane to pick off a solid, first-over Shake it Cerry (Dan Dube) by a half-length in 1:54.1.
Invading Muscle Up the Goal (Brian Sears) led through early stations of :27.2 and :56.3 before 'Cerry' upended him. She owned a length lead into the lane, only to be nailed late.
Resolve (Ake Svanstedt), in his first local start since the 2014 Yonkers Trot, was third. It wasn't the smoothest of trips for the 3-5 choice. Assigned outside his six rivals, he floated from the gate, but found no seat and took back to last.
Out and moving by the half, he wound up second-over behind Shake it Cerry, who left the cones right at the same time. Resolve wound up gapping the lass, then flattening late to be beaten two lengths, with E R Ellie (Larry Stalbaum) and Lady's Dude (George Brennan) rounding out the payees.
For sixth choice Undercover Strike, an 8-year-old Striking Sahbra gelding owned by Gerard Stuchbury and trained by Tom Milici, it was his ninth win in 14 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $164, with the triple returning $622.
The week's featured pace saw Sapphire City, put in play from post No. 6, stalk Great Vintage (Dube). After subsections of :27.1, :56.1 and 1:24.1, Great Vintage was about to wear out his welcome.
Before he did, he towed Sapphire City to the passing lane, which he used to whip a second-over, slight 2-1 choice Keystone Velocity (Sears) by a nose in 1:52.2. Polak A (Andy Miller) was a credible, first-up third off the layoff, with Dream Out Loud N (Buter) and UF Rockin' Dragon (Eric Abbatiello) settling for the remainder.
For second choice Sapphire City, an 8-year-old Metropolitan gelding trained by Paul Blumenfeld for co-owners Centaur Stables and Jordan Sklut, he's now 5-for-20 this season (50 career wins). The exacta paid $38.40, the triple returned $153 and the superfecta paid $852.
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