Chester, PA — The trotters and pacers returned to Harrah’s Philadelphia on Friday morning (March 22) for their first set of qualifiers in 2019, one week ahead of the track’s opening day for the year.
With the temperature in the mid-40s and horses forced to negotiate a sloppy surface, the Well Said sophomore gelding Just Plain Loco went the fastest mile with an open-length win in 1:56.3 for driver Pat Berry and trainer Tom Fanning. Just Plain Loco took his 2-year-old mark of 1:54 in a Pennsylvania Stallion Series contest. He also won the Renaissance Final and was second in the Sheppard.
The wife-husband team of driver Jackie and trainer Frank Ingrassia were successful with a pair of their charges, both unsurprisingly trotters. Three-year-old E Ell Cruze knocked over five seconds off his freshman qualifying mark by winning in 2:01.3, while Izoh came out of the pocket to emerge victorious in 2:00.4.
Trainer Ron Coyne Jr. also sent out two winning pupils, including the sophomore pacing filly Philly Hanover, winning in 1:57.2 for driver Tim Tetrick after capping her 2-year-old season with a runner-up outing in her Pennsylvania Sire Stakes final. Coyne’s other winner, Armagedon Seelster, took the fastest of the trotting qualifiers in 1:59.2 under Pat Berry’s handling.
The draw for next Friday’s (March 29) card will be held on Tuesday (March 26). The standard racing schedule at Harrah’s Philadelphia will be a Wednesday-through-Friday lineup at 12:25 p.m. and Sunday racing at 12:40 p.m.