Sunshine Stakes highlight Pompano opener; Hennessey wins 10

Pompano Beach, FL — Pompano Park opened its 100-night championship meeting on Sunday (Oct. 24) with the Sunshine State Stakes highlighting a 15-race program — including four non-betting events — and a pair of Open events for pacers. Warrawee Veloce and Double Metal won the Open events, but had to share the opening night spotlight with driver Wally Hennessey, who won 10 races on this kickoff program.

Hennessey swept the four non-wagering Sunshine State Stakes events and took two of the four Sunshine State Stakes on the betting card (all described below) along with four other wins with Double Metal, Spirit Shadow ($3.60), Jagger Rocks ($2.20) and Freaky Flyer ($10.40).

Warrawee Veloce, a 4-year-old altered son of Somebeachsomewhere, used a :26.3 backside blast for Kevin Wallis to brush by Darling’s Dragon and then went on to hold off a late surge by Villiam (Joe Chindano Jr.) to score by 1-3/4 lengths in a lifetime best 1:51.4 in the $12,600 Open II Pace. Agedchedar Hanover (Hennessey), prominent all the way, finished third with Windemere Ryan next. Darling’s Dragon picked up the nickel in the sextet.

Owned and trained by Ivar Hyngstrom, the win — his seventh lifetime — nudged his career bankroll over the $100,000 plateau — $101,659 to be precise. Fourth choice in the betting, Warrawee Veloce paid $10.80 to win.

The $11,000 Open III pace went to Double Metal as this 3-year-old son of Betting Line made a quarter move to the top after the :27 opener and carved out the rest of the panels to score in 1:52 for Hennessey. Freak On A Leash (Chindano) was second while Captain Malicious (Wallis) was third. Kotare Yael N and Panocchio picked up the final awards.

Trained by Peter Blood, who co-owns with Rick Berks, Double Metal, lightly raced at two, sent his scorecard this semester to 6-4-4 in 20 starts, good for $59,381. Off at 1-5 on the toteboard, Double Metal paid $2.60 to win.

Here is a recap of the Sunshine State Stakes events:

Two-Year-Old Trotting Fillies (non-wagering)

Charis, a daughter of Shibboleth Hanover, overwhelmed her competition in her racing debut with a win measuring 53-3/4 lengths for trainer-driver Hennessey. Bred and owned by Tom Casey, Charlis, beginning from the rail in her trio of fillies, was actually away third when the wings opened, improved quickly into second and then made a quarter move to the front and widened her advantage with every stride through unhurried fractions of :34.2, 1:07.3 and 1:38.2 before a :31 closer brought her to the line in 2:09.2. I’m Solar Powered (Marc Major) was second over G’s Independence, the early leader hampered by miscues thereafter.

Two-Year-Old Trotting Colts and Geldings (non-wagering)

Prince Of Sussex, a son of Creatine owned by Heather Wilder along with breeder Herman Brewer, used his nine race experience coming in and great manners to annihilate his two foes making their first lifetime start, and this Jake Huff trainee cruised around the Pompano oval in 2:03 in scoring a 64-1/2 length win for Hennessey — the fractions being :32, 1:03 and 1:33.1 along the way. Oh No Not Again (Dave Ingraham) managed to recover to finish second while Gator Force (Ken Holliday) was next after a miscue early on. The win sent Prince Of Sussex’s scorecard to 2-2-2 in 10 starts, good for $45,718 to go along with his 2:00 mark at the Meadows.

Two-Year-Old Pacing Colts and Geldings (non-wagering)

Cowboy Cool, a son of Western Terror owned by Souren Hovsepian along with trainer Rod Lorenzo, earned his second career victory with a perfectly rated and strategic 1:57.3 mile highlighted by a :57.3 finale including a :28 closer. Hennessey was in the bike for the hat trick drive. Gold Star Sven (Corey Braden) stalked the leader much of the way to finish second, a length away at the line, while Prairie Handsome (Braxten Boyd) finished third after a brief challenge around the final bend. Forever Joe K completed the order of finish. The winner has a Scioto mark of 1:55.2 and $14,445 on his card.

Three-Year-Old Trotting Colts and Geldings (non-wagering)

Ifnotnowwhen, a gelded son of Muscle Massive, gave Hennessey his grand slam on the non-wagering portion of the program with a lifetime best 1:59.4 performance for his first win of the year in 18 starts. Trained by Huff for owner Brewer, Ifnotnowwhen, beginning from the outside four post, was away first off the wings but relented to Shulda Hada Drink (Mike Simons) right at the opening panel (:29.3) with Seeking Matthew next over Jo Jo Jet. Things remained that way through fractions of :59.2 and 1:29.3 with Shulda Hada Drink leading at the top of the lane and Ifnotnowwhen looking for some room to roam. Once straightened away, he found a seam and rushed on through to win.

Two-Year-Old Pacing Fillies

Prairie Merida, driven by Boyd, made her first purse start a winning one by scoring a sharp 1:56.3 win, highlighted by a final half in :57. Boyd was in the bike back of this Royel Millennium filly trained by Mike Deters, who co-owns with Laurie Poulin, John Spindler and William Gordon. Her margin of victory in this gate-to-wire win was 11-1/4 lengths over Neverouttathefight (Simons) with the 3-5 favorite PJs Fancy Dancer (Hennessey) third, while Gold Star Snoball and Prairie Faline rounded out the quintet. Prairie Merida paid $4.80 to win as second choice.

Three-Year-Old Pacing Colts and Geldings

Heavily favored Theflyingrock, last year’s Super Night Champion, driven by trainer Simons and desperately looking for room in the lane, finally found a seam and scored a nose decision over the very game Mister David C (Hennessey) in 1:55.4. Gold Star Baron (Ingraham), closing fastest of all, was third while Buddha Beach finished fourth. Lucky Ramsey finished fifth after challenging around the final turn. Theflyingrock, a son of Rockincam, owned by Richard Marsh and making only his third start of the year and ninth lifetime, sent his career bankroll to $48,765 with the win. He paid $3.20 to win.

Three-Year-Old Trotting Fillies

Ifnotmewho, handled by Hennessey for trainer Huff and owner Brewer, and off at 1-5 despite having been winless in 15 starts this season, won like the overwhelming favorite she was by scoring a handy 1:59.3 win. The daughter of Credit Winner roared off the wings and led every step of the mile, carving up fractions of :29.1, 1:00.3 and 1:30 before sealing the issue with that :29.3 finale. Prairie Ginger (Boyd) was second while Prairie Virtue (Simons) was next. Ciao Bella and Prairie Trinket earned the minors in the septet. A winner of $71,303 last semester, Ifnotmewho ($2.40) pushed her career bankroll to $83,303 with this fifth career success.

Three-Year-Old Pacing Fillies

Prairie Sweetness. the sharp daughter of Royel Millennium trained by Deters, who co-owns with Poulin, capped off the Sunshine State Stakes finale with a handy 1:57.1 win for Hennessey. Taking command shortly after the :28 opener, Prairie Sweetness got a :30.1 breather during the second panel, thwarted any backside challenges with a :28.4 backside sprint and strolled home unscathed in :30.1 to score by 1-1/2 lengths. Another Royel Millennium filly, Prairie Dutchess (Wallis), finished second while Dice Dice Baby (Boyd) was next. KK’s Dream Girl and Ms Rodeo Drive rounded out the top five in the field of nine.

Racing continues on Tuesday night with a very competitive 10-race program beginning at 7:20 p.m.

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