Hen Party equals track record in NYSS at Saratoga

Saratoga, NY — Wednesday evening’s (Sept, 2) program featured the final installment of the New York Sire Stakes for the summer at Saratoga Casino Hotel. The 3-year-old pacing fillies took center stage with races of $74,500 and $75,900 highlighting the card on an evening in which the track record for sophomore fillies was matched.

Hen Party stopped the timer in 1:52 to match the track record for 3-year-old pacing fillies. Melissa Simser-Iovino photo.

Hen Party (Roll With Joe-My Lady Day) has simply been sensational this summer. The Tony Alagna trainee came into her $75,900 race on Wednesday off a victory in the Empire Breeders final at Tioga Downs that came in a career-best 1:49.2.

Andrew McCarthy, who has been the regular driver behind Hen Party this season, guided the pacer out to the lead after a :27.2 first quarter in her return to NYSS action. Cruising through a first half in :56.1, the 1-5 favorite was met with just a mild challenge through three-quarters that went in 1:24.3.

Hen Party still appeared strong at the top of the stretch as she braced for pocket-sitting So Rude (Joe Bongiorno) who beat her the last time they squared off in Sire Stakes competition at Yonkers Raceway in early August. This time, Hen Party would not be denied and stopped the timer in 1:52 to match the all-time track record for 3-year-old pacing fillies. The mark was set in 2006 by Darlin’s Delight who had Yannick Gingras piloting.

With the victory, Hen Party moved her seasonal earnings to $256,845 and has now piled up $429,121 in her 26 lifetime starts. The stakes star is owned by Crawford Farms Racing. So Rude was the runner-up on Wednesday while Dragon Roll (Dexter Dunn) earned the show spot.

The $74,500 division of the NYSS also went to a sophomore who has been a winning machine in her young career. The Dave Dewhurst-trained Racine Bell (So Surreal-Ty’s Artist) came into Wednesday’s stakes event on a three-race winning streak. Following two Sire Stakes victories, Racine Bell scored in a conditioned race last week at Saratoga in what served as a prep for Wednesday’s try.

Jason Bartlett piloted Racine Bell to a wire-to-wire victory on Wednesday to complete a four-bagger for the standout sophomore as she never had an anxious moment en route to victory in 1:52.4 as the 2-5 favorite. The Fun Marshall (Mitch Cushing) sat the pocket to the favorite and was the runner-up while Cash Roll (Andrew McCarthy) finished third.

Racine Bell now has five wins in eight starts in 2020 and has earned $262,039 in her career.

Live racing goes on a brief hiatus at Saratoga Casino Hotel and is set to resume on Monday afternoon (Sept. 14). Racing is scheduled for Mondays and Tuesdays for the remainder of September with first post time set for Noon.

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