Side Piece returns to Plainridge, wins again

Plainville, MA — A three-week rest seemed to agree with Side Piece, who returned to Plainridge Park to claim another win in the $20,000 Fillies and Mares Open Pace on Tuesday afternoon (May 14).

Brett Beckwith got away fourth with Side Piece while Magical Maya A (Larry Stalbaum) held the girls at bay with swift :26.1 and :54.4 splits. Side Piece pulled first-over in the second turn and looked Magical Maya A in the eye by the three-quarter pole. The two mares traded leads around the final bend before Side Piece finally put Magical Maya A aside. There was one last challenge from the tripping Racey Rach N (Mitchell Cushing), who tipped off cover and came with a rush as the wire approached. But it wasn’t enough to overtake Side Piece, who went on to a half-length victory in 1:50.4.

Side Piece found her way back to the Plainridge winner’s circle in Tuesday’s top distaff event in New England. Tom Melanson photo.

It was the second Open win in only three tries at Plainridge and fifth win overall this year for Side Piece ($4.00), who is owned by Janie Kellogg and trained by Jackie Greene. It was also the second win of the day for Beckwith.

In the secondary featured $16,000 conditioned distaff pace, Sweet Cheyanne (Shawn Gray) got away fourth as Windsun Tiara (Matty Athearn) dictated snappy fractions of :26.1, :54.2 and 1:22 to three-quarters. It was there that Gray swung Sweet Cheyanne three-wide around the stalled cover of Quarrel (Bruce Ranger) and started to move closer to Windsun Tiara. As they headed down the lane, Sweet Cheyanne continued to reel in the leader and caught Windsun Tiara in the shadow of the wire by a nose in 1:51.4 to score her first win of the year.

Sweet Cheyanne ($6.80) is owned by Dougla Overhiser and trained by Alicia Gray. It was the second win of the day for both Shawn and Alicia Gray.

Drivers Nick Graffam and Jimmy Hardy also had two winners apiece on Tuesday.

Racing at Plainridge Park resumes on Thursday (May 16) with post time at 4 p.m. The card will feature a $1,220 carryover in the Wicked Hi-5 in race six. Also on Thursday is the $100,000 Bunker Hill Trot for 3-year-olds in 2024. This Grand Circuit event is featured in the fifth race.

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