Monticello, NY — It was only Tony Ciuffetelli Jr.’s fourth drive, but he handled himself like a seasoned pro when he took advantage of a covered trip to the top of the stretch and then rallied his trotter down the passing lane to score a 2:00.4 triumph with Revrac Harbour in the Billings Trot at Monticello Raceway on Thursday afternoon (May 30).
For a youngster who drove his first pari-mutuel winner, he outwardly remained quiet, but one would surely have to believe he was jubilant under his calm exterior.
“When I got away in the two-hole, I figured I’d probably get a good trip and I did,” Ciuffetelli admitted. “But my horse was steady on the left line as we headed to the half. Being an old veteran, I guess he wanted to make a move off the pylons, but when Bob Hechkoff (with Noble Warrawee) moved alongside the leader (Connie Keeper), he let go of the left line. As we passed the three-quarters, I had a good hold on him and I was looking for racing room.”
Young Ciuffetelli found what he was looking for when the leaders reached the top of the stretch. He angled the 8-year-old son of Donato Hanover to the passing lane, and the veteran trotter did the rest, trotting by both pace-setter Connie Keeper and her challenger Noble Warrawee to score a one-length victory in 2:00.4.
Ciuffetelli is the son of veteran Billings participant Tony Ciuffetelli.
Owned by Homestyle Racing and trained by Joseph Ciuffetelli, Revrac Harbour paid $18.40. It was the veteran trotter’s second seasonal triumph and the 28th of his career, which increased his lifetime earnings to over $240,000.
The next Billings action to take place is slated for Saturday (June 1) at The Meadows in western Pennsylvania.