Nichols, NY — Persistent Bettor (Bruce Aldrich Jr.) took the $6,500 featured Open II Fillies & Mares Pace on Saturday (July 4) at Tioga Downs.
Coveredndiamonds N (Mike Merton) went to the front and led to the first quarter in :27.2. Odds On Cheddar (Renaldo Morales III) came first-up and took a slight lead as they went by the stands for the first time. She could not clear and Coveredndiamonds N re-established the lead and hit the half first in :56.1. Marvalous Jet (Wally Hennessey) became the next to challenge as they went down the backstretch. Coveredndiamonds N still led to three-quarters in 1:24.2.
Coveredndiamonds N and Marvalous Jet went shoulder to shoulder all around the final turn. Marvalous Jet took the lead as they reached the stretch, but Persistent Bettor ($9.50) squeezed through an opening on the inside to get the victory in 1:53.4. Standing Respect (Mike Simons) came flying late to finish in a dead heat for second with Marvalous Jet.
Persistent Bettor is a 5-year-old mare by Bettor’s Delight. She is trained by John Hallett for owners Geoffrey and Rick Howles. It was her first win this season and her 16th career victory.
Wally Hennessey drove three winners on the night. He won with Zapaca ($10.60), Western Passage ($6.80) and Boli ($9.30).
Tioga Downs returns to live racing on Sunday (July 5) with a 12-race card starting at 1 p.m.