Lexington, KY — Chris Ryder trainee Bettor’s Wish ground first over into the final turn and withstood a late rush from pocket-popper Captain Crunch to take the second of two divisions of the $540,000 Crawford Farms Tattersalls Pace — sponsored by Michelle and Albert Crawford — on Sunday (Oct. 6) at The Red Mile.
Captain Crunch led the field to a :26.3 first quarter but settled for the pocket moving up the backstretch as American Mercury brushed from third to the lead past a :55 half. Bettor’s Wish, racing fifth, followed that move but raced uncovered upon the lead change into the final turn. The son of Bettor’s Delight-Lifetime Star pressed forward through three-quarters in 1:21.3 and put away American Mercury straightening for the finish. Captain Crunch vacated the pocket and rallied inside of Bettor’s Wish late but only gave chase from second. Air Force Hanover took third.
“I was concerned about Captain Crunch,” Ryder said after the race. “He was second last week but he raced well. He made us go, so it was a little anxious absolutely. But we held on. There’s really not much to say. (Bettor’s Wish) was a nice 2-year-old and he’s just improved. The time off or whatever from two to three — he’s just a faster animal.”
Co-owned by Ryder with Bella Racing, Fair Island Farm and Bettors Wish Partners, Bettor’s Wish won his 16th race from 27 lifetime starts, earning $1,561,000. Dexter Dunn, who became the leading driver of the Grand Circuit meeting, piloted the $2.60 winner.
Dancin Lou lunged inside of 1-9 favorite Southwind Ozzi late in the stretch to take the other division of the Crawford Farms Tattersalls Pace.
Driver Dexter Dunn dashed Dancin Lou to the lead while U S Captain settled for the pocket moving to a :27 first quarter. Southwind Ozzi, sitting third, soon tipped wide and brushed to the top entering the backside, leading the field past the half in :54.3.
Can’t Beach That was flushed first over from fourth moving into the final turn, tracked by Shake That House, but stalled past three-quarters in 1:23. Southwind Ozzi clung to command as he floated off the pegs through the stretch. Dancin Lou darted through the late opening and slid past the Little Brown Jug winner to stop the clock in 1:49.4. Shake That House kicked off cover for third.
“This is a dream come true; I just can’t believe it,” said winning trainer Tahnee Camilleri, an Australian native in her first year training stateside. “I’m in shock — I’m shaking. You normally don’t find me tongue tied but, oh my God. I’m just thankful (my owners) decided to give an Aussie girl chasing the American dream a shot.
“He really likes the big track and I think he likes the clay surface. He stays like a mother-in-law so the big track suits him.”
Bred by Anvil & Lace Farm and owned by David Kryway and 1362313 Ontario Ltd., Dancin Lou won his 10th race from 26 lifetime starts, earning $265,859. The Sweet Lou-Dancewiththebest colt bound for the Breeders Crown paid $20.40 to win.