Freehold, NJ – Freehold Raceway concluded the Vinny Fusco Jr Memorial Pacing Series on Friday (Jan. 22), with a pair of finals. One saw a logical result, the other an upset.
Tall Poppy N completed a sweep of the second division, for fillies and mares with a TrackMaster Horse Rating between 71.50 and 75.00 at the start of the series. Just like in the first two legs, George Brennan put her on the lead just after the quarter, and set comfortable fractions. In the stretch, she received a stiff challenge from Thaneeya, but Tall Poppy N held her at bay for a half-length win, in 1:56.3. The winner is owned by Curtin Anz Stable, trained by Kelvin Harrison and paid $4.60 to win.
The first division final, for horses with a TrackMaster Horse Rating between 68.00 and 71.50, was won by 8-1 If Ur Richimsingle. Leaving from post position two, Daniel Dube put her in the pocket early on. Not long after the quarter, Dube activated his charge, and moved to the lead before the half. She drew off and opened up nearing three-quarters, and never looked back, crossing the wire 2-1/2 lengths in front.
The winning filly is owned by John Cancelliere and trained by Tom Cancelliere. She paced the mile in 1:58.2, for her first career win paying $19.60 to her backers.
In between those two finals, Lean Hanover defeated Melady’s Monet to win the Preferred Handicap trot. Jim Marohn Jr kept him in the pocket most of the way, then activated him in the stretch and rolled by for a length-and-a-quarter win. He trotted the mile in 1:57.1, for owners PC Wellwood Enterprises, Karen Carroll and trainer Linda Toscano.
Live racing continues at Freehold on Saturday (Jan. 23), with a 13-race card with a scheduled first post time of 12:30 p.m.. The card includes two finals of the Harold Kelly Memorial Pacing Series.