Fist Fighter, Big Bad Baby win Send It In Invitationals at Pompano

Pompano Beach, FL — Pompano Park had yet another million dollar handle night as the track featured a pair of Send It In specials on April Fool’s Day, highlighted by a mandatory payout on the Super Hi-5 finale with a carryover of more than $130,000 and a final pool of more than $500,000.

The Send It In Invitationals were issued for hard luck horses this season that were only two for 109 in the win column in 2021 on the pace and three for 83 on the trot — each event carrying an Open purse of $10,000.

The Send It In trotting invitational went to the Mike Murphy trained Fist Fighter, who despite being roughed up early from the eight post went on to score a handy two length win for Wally Hennessey in 1:59.

The 4-year-old gelded son of Mr Cantab took charge three-eighths into the mile and led the rest of the way, holding off the late surging Savin Rock (Jack Killeen) with Legend Field (Corey Braden) next, 5-1/2 lengths away. Benns Score Keeper was fourth while Canale Hanover, beginning from the second tier post 10, rallied for fifth. All remaining starters received $300.

In the winner’s circle after the event, Hennessey related, “Every win is special for me but this one was extra special because it was for a wonderful trainer and gentleman, Mike Murphy, who deserves all the good luck in the world.”

Owned by James Wilson along with Teri Jenkins, Fist Fighter was even money on the toteboard and paid $4.00 to win with the 20 cent pentafecta ticket of 8-5-4-7-10 returning a handsome $1,147.02.

Pompano Park’s John Berry got it straight from the horse’s mouth after Rob Hoffman’s Big Bad Baby won the Send It In Invitational. Ryan Thompson photo.

The companion Send It In pacing invitational, with that aforementioned mandatory Super Hi-5 payout, went to Rob Hoffman’s Big Bad Baby in 1:57.

The 7-year-old daughter of Big Bad John swept up widest of all turning for home and won by a half-length over Elm Grove Nellie (Braxton Boyd) with J P Silver (Hennessey) third after being last at the stretch call. Blurred Lines rallied late and finished fourth while Queen Me Again picked up the nickel after challenging on the final bend.

The race was action packed start to finish as Heavenly Evelyn zipped off the wings and took the field through an opener of :27.2 before relinquishing the lead to IRA Chief halfway through in :56.3. Meanwhile, the eventual winner, last at the opening marker began to gnaw her way forward catching live cover along the way from Elm Grove Nellie.

At the third station in 1:26.3, the field was tightening up and there were five across the track once they straightened away with Big Bad Baby taking charge at mid-stretch from Elm Grove Nellie, who had taken a short lead turning for home.

After the event, owner-trainer-driver Hoffman said, “She’s had just a prolonged unlucky streak. She has been drawing badly and always in heavy traffic. Actually, tonight was no different but we got some live cover flow for a change and she sure responded when she got some room to roam. This was a bonanza for her tonight.”

It also turned out to be a bonanza for 79 astute handicappers in the Send It In Army as the 20-cent Super Hi-5 combination of 6-8-7-3-9 returned $5,568.20.

Handle for the night — the final Thursday of the season — was $1,136,788, extending the already record breaking million dollar handle nights at Pompano Park this season to 17.

Racing continues through April on a Sunday-Monday-Tuesday schedule with post time set for 7:20 p.m.

Back to Top

Share via