Chester, PA – A hard rainstorm came through southeast Pennsylvania just before the $11,600 featured pace on Wednesday afternoon (Aug.12) at Harrah’s Philadelphia, turning the track to “sloppy +2,” and when the feature was raced, the stretch battle between the two even-money favorites had that apple-cart upset by the Sportswriter mare Shezallapples A, who rallied up the inside for a 1:50.3 victory despite the off going.
The two favorites were Eclipse Me N, racing on the lead, and Apple Bottom Jeans, who came at her with a vengeance first-over nearing the 1:23.3 three-quarters. Eclipse Me N looked like she had fought off her game rival in mid-stretch, but then she bore out a bit. Shezallapples A, coming on from the pocket, paced her own last split in :26.4 with Montrell Teague’s guidance and won by half a length over Eclipse Me N, with Apple Bottom Jeans another neck back in third. Completing the money earners were Ponder The Odds and yet another “Apple” horse, Apple Hanover.
Shezallapples A has now won just over a quarter of her lifetime starts (23 of 91 – 25.3%), and has earnings of $270,319. Chuck Crissman Jr. trains the mare for owner Bret Sliwka.
George Napolitano Jr. drove six winners during the Wednesday card, stretching his lead in the win derby over Tim Tetrick to 68-55. Two of Napoltano’s winners were for trainer Gilbert Garcia-Owen, who is now just one behind Ron Burke at the top of the conditioners; crown chase at 27-26.
Amigo Hall, coming off a fourth in the Hambletonian, and EL Ideal will look to notch their second Pennsylvania Sire Stakes victories when the three-year-old trotting colts come to town on Sunday afternoon. Both winners of $500,000 plus are in the $94,967 sixth race division; the other section, for the same amount, is in race eleven, and like the sixth it contains three members of the Åke Svanstedt barn, with Svanstedt having the misfortune to draw the outside posts seven and eight in both divisions.
From here, this Sire Stakes division will spend their next two Mondays at The Meadows completing their Sire Stakes prelims before returning here on Sunday, September 6 to be part of the $1,000,000+ Pennsylvania Sire Stakes Three-Year-Old Championship card.