Chesterfield, NJ — When trainer Linda Toscano sends her 2-year-olds out for their first qualifiers, she is watching for three things.
“Manners, gait, and not being finished at the end of the miles,” Toscano said. “That’s my whole thing. If they go to the gate and mind their manners and do what we ask them to do, show a little bit of speed, and finish with the bits in their mouth, that’s all I care about at this point.”
After watching 10 of her 2-year-olds compete in their first qualifiers Wednesday at Magical Acres, Toscano was mostly pleased on all counts. She saw male pacers Top Genius and Lou’s Beach win their races, as well as female pacer Throw The Dice.
“My pacing colts were really good,” Toscano said. “Top Genius has been good but he’s never really showed the kind of speed he showed today. That was good. Lou’s Beach, that was shocking. He does what you ask him to do and he’s happy to do it, but I never knew how much speed he had. Today, he woke up, and was real good too.
“The fillies went real well and all finished with pretty good pace and did what they were supposed to do. Throw The Dice has been very good training down and she didn’t let me down today. She was really good. Somesweetsomewhere has been getting better as we’re going faster, so I was tickled with her because she finished right on the wire with (Throw The Dice) today.”
Somesweetsomewhere finished a nose behind Throw The Dice in a five-horse field of Toscano trainees, with all coming home in :27.4 or faster on Magical Acres’ five-eighths-mile oval.
Throw The Dice (by American Ideal out of Fox Valley Shaker) won in 1:56.1 with Scott Zeron in the sulky. She was purchased under the name The Bomb Blue Chip for $50,000 at the Lexington Selected Sale and is owned by Let It Ride Stables and Bottom Line Racing. She is a half-sister to Grand Circuit winner Pretty Katherine.
Lou’s Beach (Sweet Lou-Bodacious) recorded the day’s fastest mile, 1:55.3, with David Miller driving. The colt is owned by breeders Conrad Zurich and Hauser Bros. Racing.
Top Genius (American Ideal-Above Average) won in 1:56.4, also with Miller. He was purchased for $62,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sale and is owned by Seth Coen, George Derocker, Camelot Stable, and Decker’s Corner Stable.
“I don’t know how they’re going to fare out in the real world, but at Magical Acres world they were good,” Toscano said with a smile about her group. “I’d love to let them stretch out a little bit before they have to go their ways, but this is great experience for them to get on the gate and learn to go fast.”
Toscano’s day did include the occasional hiccup, such as male pacer Camouflage Money (Betting Line-Shelliscape) and female trotter Tsunami Blue Chip (Chapter Seven-Noreaster Bluechip) going off stride.
“The colt I think I like the best out of all of them, Camouflage Money, jumped something but landed back on the pace and finished up real good (second to Top Genius),” Toscano said. “I had one disappointment, and that was the trotting filly. But we’ll try to fix that and march on. For the most part, we had a good day.”
Other 2-year-old winners were female trotters Vogue, Bold And Beautiful, and Lady Montague, and male trotters Robertsin and Tanglewild Road.
Vogue (Father Patrick-Swan And Only) posted the fastest time for the trotters, winning in 1:58.3 with Miller driving for trainer Per Engblom. She was purchased for $60,000 at the Lexington Selected Sale and is owned by Engblom Stable, Wiesman Farms, Joyce McClelland, and R A W Equine Inc.
Bold And Beautiful (Muscle Hill-To Dream On) won in 2:02.3 with Miller driving for trainer Jonas Czernyson. She was purchased for $60,000 at the Lexington Selected Sale and is owned by Consus Racing Stable and L Berg Inc.
Lady Montague (Cantab Hall-Traviata) is a half-sister to Grand Circuit winner Illuminata. She won in 2:00.4 with Zeron driving for trainer Paula Wellwood. She was purchased for $40,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sale and is owned by Harbor Racing Stable.
Robertsin (Muscle Hill-Sina) is a full brother to Grand Circuit winner Beautiful Sin. He won in 2:00.4 with George Brennan driving for trainer Nik Drennan. The colt was purchased for $60,000 at the Lexington Selected Sale and is owned by Joseph Davino, Brad Shackman, and Drennan Stable.
Tanglewild Road (Chapter Seven-True Friends) won in 2:02.2 with Dexter Dunn driving for trainer Scott Petherick. He was purchased under the name Good Night Zoom for $90,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sale and is owned by Kenneth Klein, Stephen Demeter, and Arthur Lucarelli.
For compete charts from Wednesday’s qualifiers at Magical Acres, click here. Qualifiers will continue at the training center each Wednesday through June.