SOPHOMORES SHINE IN EXCELSIOR SERIES FINALS
The inaugural season of the newly formed Excelsior Series came to a rousing finish on Wednesday afternoon, September 19 with four $45,000 finales in each of four different divisions for sophomore pacers and trotters at Monticello Raceway.
The splits featured 3-year-old pacing fillies; 3-year-old pacing colts and geldings; 3-year old trotting fillies and 3-year-old trotting colts and geldings. And of the highest point- earners in the season long preliminaries only one, Blows Me Away, was a victorious finalist.
Blows Me Away, a pacing daughter of American Ideal-Art’s Reality defeated seven others, including 1-2 favorite Table Games, in a gate to wire effort in a time of 1:56 for driver Jimmy Marohn, Jr.
With quick gate speed Marohn sent the filly to the lead from the eight-hole and she rebuffed any and all challenges along the way to score a 1-1/2 length triumph over Table games. It was the filly’s eighth—and fourth consecutive – victory in 14 seasonal starts.
Blows Me Away is trained by Jim Perry for William J and Jack M Heinz of Mentor, Ohio. She paid $6.40 for win.
Locally owned and rapidly improving Gaelic and Garlic copped the 3 year old colt and gelding trotting division with a wire-to- wire victory in a time of 1:59.1 for owners Bernie White of Pine Bush NY and the Kristie Leigh Farm (Tony Statuto) of Flushing NY.
Like Blows Me Away, Gaelic And Garlic started form post eight and driver Jason Bartlett zoomed him toward to front-end but the altered son of Credit Winner-La Tapitia didn’t take command until the quarter mile timer flashed :28.3. Once on top Gaelic And Garlic cruised along two lengths ahead of his competition and finished a 1-1/2 length winner keeping Macksmith and driver Sam Schillaci at bay in the final strides.
Trained by Eddie Hart Gaelic And Garlic paid $9.80 for win.
Honeymoonisover won the 3-year-old filly trotting split in a 1:59.3 clocking for driver Jason Bartlett.
After leaving from the pole position Bartlett stalked the pace-setter J’Omama until the top of the lane and at that point he moved his filly to the outside and Honeymoonisover rallied to an easy two-length trotting victory by J’Omama and Jimmy Whittemore for the filly’s fourth triumph of the season.
The daughter of Credit Winner-Howard’s Sister is owned by Philip Hale of New Hartford, NY and trained by David Dewhurst. She returned a $35.20 win payoff
A final $45,000 Excelsior Series finale for sophomore pacing colts and geldings saw Sir Melo’s Z Tam gain command at the halfway point and then ramble to an easy three-length victory in a 1:54.4 clocking for driver Patrick Lachance. Second under the wire was Fireyourguns for driver Jimmy Marohn, Jr.
The son of American ideal-Sara Sue notched his seventh victory of the year-- in 13 outings—and paid $3.60 for win.
He is co-owned by his driver from Manalapan, NJ ; Ira Rosenblum of Hewlett, NY and M&M Harness Racing LLC of New York City. Patrick Lachance also doubles as the colt’s trainer