Tioga, NY — Wins on Sunday (Aug. 18) in the Empire Breeders Classic at Tioga have colt Hickfromfrenchlick and filly Zero Tolerance riding a wave of momentum into their final New York Sire Stakes appearances. The 3-year-olds sit comfortably in the top tier of point earners with one leg of racing left for each before the Night of Champions at Batavia Downs.
Trainer/driver/co-owner Ray Schnittker calls Hickfromfrenchlick’s race on Sunday the horse’s “best performance of the year.” The colt pacer is more mature and a lot more sound on the track, according to Schnittker, and paced strongly through the wire in the final in 1:48.4.
Hickfromfrenchlick is a special horse for Schnittker out of the second crop of So Surreal, a horse he also campaigned. If he had to compare the two, Schnittker would say Hickfromfrenchlick is a little quicker while So Surreal may have the edge in the endurance department. Even so, he says, “both have a very high speed.”
Hickfromfrenchlick’s next start is on Aug. 29 at Yonkers. He is staked to events at Hoosier Park later this fall and will head there following the NYSS finals at Batavia on Sept. 14. Bred by Steve Jones, his career earnings are now $374,052
Joe Holloway, trainer of Zero Tolerance, says she has been excellent this year and showed a strong back half in the final, finishing in 1:50.2. Her ability to adapt to any racing situation is a quality that’s impressed him.
“Her versatility is her biggest strength. I’ve had a lot of fillies and they’ve all had their particular quirks, but with Zero Tolerance, she’s not dependent upon one racing strategy,” said the newly inducted Hall of Famer.
She is undefeated in New York this season with four NYSS victories to her name. Her next start will be at Batavia in the final leg of the NYSS, where she will look to hold on to her position as points leader in her division, and improve upon nearly $150,000 in NYSS earnings.
Beyond the NYSS, Holloway has plans to race Zero Tolerance in Lexington and in the Breeders Crown.
“If everything goes right, she’ll have seven more starts this year,” he said.
As a 2-year-old, Zero Tolerance made a number of Grand Circuit appearances, most notably a second behind Warrawee Ubeaut in the Breeders Crown final. Bred by Winbak Farm and now owned by Val D’Or Farms and Ted Gewertz, she earned $485,813 on the track as a freshman and her career earnings now total $839,986.