by Jim Moran, for Vernon Downs
Vernon, NY — Hitwiththeladies started things off with a 1:54.4 track record performance while capturing the first of six New York Sires Stakes divisions at Vernon Downs on Tuesday night (July 10).
Competing in the second of 12 Tuesday events, a $25,769 division of the $154,614 NYSS test for 3-year-old male trotters, Hitwiththeladies sparred with Jack’s Reef during a :28 opening quarter before taking charge prior to the :57.3 half. He rolled through a 1:26.3 three-quarter split en route to a new win mark, and lowered Vernon’s 12-year-old standard for sophomore trotting colts by one-fifth of a second.
The near four length triumph was the second this season (both at the Downs) for the bay son of Giant Hit, who has banked more than $97,700 in seven current outings for owner/trainer Allan McCarty to hike his career earnings to $293,185.
“(Hitwiththeladies) was pretty good tonight,” acknowledged noted driver Stephane Bouchard. “I probably could have gone faster, but I just let him sprint home and he won easily. He’s at the top of his game right now.”
Tuesday’s other NYSS divisional winners were Stunt Man Hall, impressing in a 1:55.4 gate-to-wire performance for driver Cat Manzi, trainer Kevin McDermott and owners Joseph Zicchino, Wayne Chrebet (of New York Jet fame), Matthew Buhse and Alton E. Lunch, Jr. Inc.; Bet To Win, turning a two hole trip into a 1:57.1 victory and notching a fourth straight score with Jim Morrill, Jr. driving for trainer Ray Remmen and owner John Lichtenberger; Aisling, toughing out a 1:57.1 triumph for Morrill, Jr., trainer Bob Bencal and the Little E LLC stable; DW’s Big Bear, rallying from last to first in an exciting 1:57.1 upset effort for driver Brian Allen, trainer Jeffery Deslandes and the W. D. La Page Stable; and Matrix Hall, tallying in 2:02.1 for driver Manzi, trainer Todd Stone and owners Stephen Moss and Harold and Helane Solomon.
The second leg of the Kindergarten Classic Series for 2-year-old trotters went postward in three $10,000 divisions, with Baileysirishdream winning the filly flight in 1:59.2 for driver Howard Okusko, Jr., trainer Ray Van Dreason and owner Barbara Bailey.
The colt/gelding contests were won by Andover America in 2:02.2 with trainer Ray Schnittker teaming for the Neal Goldman, Alan Caplan, Keith Dickstein and Richard Timbo partnership, and Colie’s in 2:02.3 for Morrill, Jr., trainer Chuck Connor, Jr. and the Fred Monteleone Stable, LLC.
Manzi and Morrill each posted three tallies during the program, while former seven-time Vernon dashwinning champ Allen chalked up two victories.
Provisional pilot Nick J. Gibides made his first career start a winning one when he guided the veteran pacer George The Animal to a 1:55.4 score in Tuesday’s 12th race. His dad, Nicholas Gibides, conditions the two-time current winner for longtime Vernon patron Dorothy Gibides.
Downs Doings: In securing his second tally in nine current tries, DW’s Big Bear paid $174.00 to win, $199.00 to place and $15.80 to show…Baileysirishdream and Colie’s remain unbeaten in two Kindergarten appearances, while Andover America, whose record remains unblemished in two lifetime outings, was making his initial Vernon venture…The Downs has received approval to start its eight remaining Tuesday programs at 6:00 p.m…The complex’s video gaming facility now operates from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, and from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 a.m. Friday and Saturday, while its daily simulcast sessions begin at 11:00 a.m.