Empire Breeders Classic headlines Vernon Downs card on Saturday

Vernon, NY — Vernon Downs will host three Empire Breeders Classic races for 3-year-old trotters on Saturday (July 4) at 1 p.m.

There will be two divisions for sophomore trotting colts and geldings. Both divisions will race for a purse of $97,750.

In the first division, the Steven Pratt trained Barn Holden (Jim Morrill Jr) looks to be the horse to beat. In a leg of the New York Sire Stakes last week the colt by Conway Hall faded in the stretch to finish third after leading most of the race. He has two wins in 2020 and five career victories with earnings of $136,728.

His main rival will be the Julie Miller trained Book Seven (Andy Miller). The Chapter Seven colt is one for one in 2020 with a lifetime best mark of 1:56.2 last week at Vernon. He has six lifetime wins and has earned $85,440 in his career.

Third Shift looked real sharp in his 2020 debut last week, winning in a lifetime best of 1:54.3. Fotowon photo.

Third Shift (Ake Svanstedt) and Berkery J (Scott Zeron) are set to face off in the second division of the EBC. Both are coming off of NYSS wins at Vernon Downs last week.

Third Shift (Chapter Seven) won the $225,000 NYSS final for freshman colts and geldings in 2019. He looked real sharp in his 2020 debut last week, winning in a lifetime best of 1:54.3. Trained by Svanstedt, he has earned $239,961 lifetime with four career wins.

Berkery J (Chapter Seven) came flying late to win last week in a lifetime best time of 1:54.2 in his first start of 2020. The George Ducharme trained colt has four career wins and earnings of $176,125.

Chaptiama (Chapter Seven) should be their main competition. Trained and driven by Trond Smedshammer, the gelding came charging late to finish a close second to Berkery J in their NYSS race at Vernon. He has two lifetime victories and $196,735 in earnings.

Eleven fillies will square off in the $207,250 EBC for sophomore filly trotters.

Hypnotic AM and Brian Sears were the winners in their division of the NYSS for 3-year-old filly trotters on June 21 at Tioga Downs. Fred Brown photo.

Hypnotic AM (Brian Sears) is the top money earner in the group with $485,006 in the bank. Marcus Melander trains the filly by Chapter Seven. As a freshman she finished first in the $225,000 NYSS final and had a third place finish in the Breeders Crown. She is one for one in 2020 with an impressive NYSS win at Tioga Downs last time out. She is eight for ten in her career.

Senorita Rita (Scott Zeron) will be making her 3-year-old debut. She had a sensational freshman season with wins in the $475,100 Goldsmith Maid and the $251,020 Kindergarten final (both at The Meadowlands). Linda Toscano trains the filly by Chapter Seven. She has six career wins and earnings of $414,858.

Morning line favorite Love A Good Story (3-1, Andy Miller) is coming off a 1:53 score in her 3-year-old debut at Tioga Downs in a leg of the NYSS. The sophomore filly by Chapter Seven is trained by Julie Miller. She has eight career wins and has amassed $261,637 in her career.

There will also be two divisions of the NYSS for freshman pacing fillies. Both divisions will race for a purse of $53,100.

Post time for the 15-race card on Saturday (July 4) is 1:10 p.m.

Vernon Downs will race on Thursdays and Saturdays for the rest of July at 4 p.m. The track will also race on Friday (July 10) with a 4 p.m. post time as well. For more information go to www.vernondowns.com.

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