There’s an old adage that states  ‘if at first you don’t succeed try, try again’. That’s what owner Dominick Rafanelli of Hazlet, NJ did yesterday (August 13 )at Monticello Raceway when he again claimed Stoman, the veteran pacer who has won seven of his last eight races. Although there are caveats to be considered in the aforementioned maxim perhaps it may be more of a case of what goes around comes around since this is the third time in the past six weeks at Rafanelli is Stoman’s the owner of record
Here’s the story.
Stoma is  a solid $12,500 claiming pacer who recently has been on a tear and has changed barns nearly every week for the past seven weeks.
On July 9 the 7 year old Market Report gelding scored a 1:54.4 victory for owner Rafanelli  only to be taken  home by  Barry Franklin for the $12,500
claiming price.
The next week Rafanelli claimed  back the pacer who had won in 1:55.1 only to lose him again the following week.
After changing hands—barns may be more accurate—Stoman was in again for $12,500 on  August 13 and for the third time Rafanelli  claimed  him. But his wasn’t the only claim in on Stoman. Rafanelli won the drawing  by the  presiding  judge from the three $12,500 claims that were in on the pacer yesterday.
It was another easy victory yesterday for Stoman,, then the  property of  Philip Schultz and trained by Bob Lounsbury.
When the race began  driver  Bruce Aldrich, Jr. hustled the pacer to the front and they made every pole a winning one en route to a new lifetime record of 1:54 for much claimed pacer.
Stoman was sent off at odds of 1-4 and paid $2.50 for win. It was the pacer’s 10th win this season.
“He was awesome, today. He knows how to win and he seems to love doing it,” Aldrich said about Stoman. “And he’s a pleasure to drive, too.”
This morning trainer Lounsbury was asked how he felt about losing Stoman.
“You always hate to lose a horse like him. He’s not only a good race horse but a pleasure to be around,” he said.
Asked if he (Stoman) is in again for the same price would his patron claim him back?
“It’s a given. We’ve got the check ready, “he said and then added,. “This may sound funny but there’s room for improvement with this horse. He’s been claimed so much lately that they just seem to be racing him out of a field or something. He didn’t seem to me to have many jog miles under his belt.”
Lounsbury  also said “Depending on how you look at it today was either a good day or a bad day for( owner Philip) “Mike” Schultz. He not only lost Stoman in a claiming race but he also lost another of his pacers, King For A Queen in a claimer.”
The victory behind Stoman was just one of four on the 11-race card for Aldrich.
He also scored with another pacer, DVG Gifted Indeed ($5.10), who that has been a multiple winner both this year and last. The Place To Be 6-yer-old gelding is also trained by Lounsbury, but for owner Irwin Kaplan.
In that contest Aldrich sat a two-hole trip and slid out in mid-stretch and then rallied to a 1:56.1 triumph. It marked the 13th seasonal triumph for DVC Gifted Indeed, who won 14 times here last year.
Aldrich’s  third winner on the program was with Sandra Presciti and Anita Fialkow’s, Greystone Cash ($17.00) in 1:54.4 and win number four came behind Jennifer Familette’s Scare Tactics N  ($3.90) in 1:59.1
With his four wins on the Tuesday Mighty M card Aldrich, the meet’s leading driver with 242 winners,  now has 360 for the season which ranks him sixth on the North American leaderboard