Up Your Deo delivers in Yonkers Trot

To watch a race replay of Up Your Deo’s Yonkers Trot victory, click here.

Yonkers, NY — Up Your Deo, fresh off a track record win in his elimination a week ago, kicked off this year’s Trotting Triple Crown with a 1:53.3 triumph for trainer-driver Åke Svanstedt in the $300,000 MGM Yonkers Trot, for 3-year-old colts and geldings, on Friday night (June 30) at MGM Yonkers Raceway.

Starting from post two, Up Your Deo, who miscued briefly past the start in his elimination score, got away cleanly this time and settled in third behind Chapercraz (Yannick Gingras) and Ari Ferrari J (Dexter Dunn). Chapercraz posted opening-half fractions of :28 and :57.2, with Svanstedt waiting until early on the third turn to move first-over. Unfortunately for Svanstedt, his other horse in the race, Kierkegaard K (Mark MacDonald), went off stride as he was flushing out Up Your Deo to follow, spoiling his chances of success.

Chapercraz quickened once Up Your Deo pulled and maintained command at the three-quarters in 1:25.3, but Up Your Deo had advanced in second on the outside at that point. They continued to race in that order around the final bend and into the stretch, and although Chapercraz was game and tried to fend off Up Your Deo, it was to no avail, as Up Your Deo sailed by halfway through the drive on his way to win by three-quarters of a length.

Up Your Deo sustained a first-over push to defeat Chapercraz in the MGM Yonkers Trot. Mike Lizzi photo.

Chapercraz was the runner-up, with Ari Ferrari J, Devilish Hill (Andy McCarthy) and Tillio’s Action (Jordan Stratton) finishing third through fifth.

“I had to ask him a little. He answered immediately, then it was an easy win,” remarked Svanstedt. “I don’t know the schedule right now, but I hope [he’s a Hambletonian horse]. We’re going for that.”

Bred by co-owner Deo Volente Farms, the victorious Walner colt is also co-owned by Svanstedt, Suleyman Yuksel Stables Inc. and Van Camp Trotting Corp. Up Your Deo now has three wins, three seconds and two thirds from 12 efforts, has earned $281,487 and returned $3.40 to win as the 3-5 favorite. The exacta was worth $21.20 and the trifecta kicked back $70.00.

“The horse has come along really extremely well. He had bad luck as a 2-year-old,” said Mike Gulotta of Deo Volente Farms. “We were very lucky to own a piece of this horse. I actually went to congratulate Sarah Svanstedt for buying the horse. He was a $100,000 Walner, and she said ‘well, I have 20 percent left, do you want it?’ and I said ‘absolutely.’

“Mike Gulotta is like my brother. I invested in Deo Volente Farms and when I started watching the horse, I said this horse has talent,” remarked Tom Pontone, another partner in Deo Volente. “The best part about it is we still own the mare and we still have a foal on the ground. She’s pregnant now, so we hope for great things to come in years to come.”

Gulotta added that Up Your Deo is heavily staked for the remainder of his sophomore campaign.

The companion filly race to the MGM Yonkers Trot, the $100,000 New York New York Mile, went to 8-1 shot Secret Volo, driven by Brian Sears. She shot to the early lead from post seven but ended up third past the :27.1 opening quarter as first Walner Payton (Dexter Dunn) and then heavy favorite Sadie Hanover (Scott Zeron) moved by her.

Sadie Hanover clicked off the half in :56.1 and the three-quarters in 1:25.1, with Sears tipping and rolling Secret Volo first-over passing the latter station. Secret Volo advanced to battle with Sadie Hanover, but it was a quick duel as Secret Volo took the top spot on the rim midway through the final bend, and after Sears kicked out the earplugs coming off the turn, Secret Volo widened on her rivals to prevail by 2-3/4 lengths in 2:00.4 for the 1-1/16 miles. Walner Payton, Sadie Hanover, Warrawee Yes (George Brennan) and Tipsy Moni (Jim Marohn Jr.) completed the top five.

“She’s a great filly. She was second behind Special Way last time. The eight-hole didn’t bother that much to be honest because she was going around there very good. It was exciting, of course,” said winning trainer Marcus Melander. “She’s proven herself before that she can race against the best ones. She’s been very unlucky in these big races because she draws bad every time. I don’t want to blame that, but she really does. She’s racing good every week.

“She’s probably got the Delvin Miller in two weeks at the Meadowlands.”

A daughter of Walner bred by Jorgen Jahre and Kentuckiana Farms and owned by Heights Stable, Rick Wahlstedt and Kenneth Kjellgren, Secret Volo made her third appearance in the winner’s circle and has now banked $304,688. She paid $19.60 to win and keyed a $72.50 exacta and a $164.50 trifecta.

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