Sunday, May 22, 2011

See You At Peelers and Roadside Delight lead EBC eliminations

Last year's 2-year-old champion, See You At Peelers, started off the year with her 14th consecutive victory in the first division of the Empire Breeders' Classic on Sunday afternoon at Tioga Downs.

Settling in third through the early parts of the race, Marcus Johansson tipped the 3-year-old daughter of Bettor's Delight – West Side Glory to the outside and took control of the race.

Swinging Beauty and Scott Zeron settled in second as the field passed through fractions of 56.1 and 1:23.2 before Johansson stepped clear of Swinging Beauty in a new national season's, stakes, and track record of 1:50.4.

Swinging Beauty paced home second, while Miss Annie J (Jason Bartlett), and Whats New Pussycat (George Brennan) both qualified for next week's $279,175e final.

"To win 14 straight is really tough," said trainer Jimmy Takter. "She had an unbelievable stretch drive today and 1:50.4 is pretty respectable. Everyone asked me who was going to pick up the drive on her this year and I gave Marcus (Johansson) a shot. He has been with me for quite a while now and he deserves a shot at a good filly like her."

"On a big track I think she is outsized and would maybe be in a little too tough, but on a half or five-eighths I wouldn’t be afraid of anyone," said Takter when asked if See You At Peelers could go with the boys.
In the first division for the 3-year-old pacing colts, Roadside Delight (George Brennan) left like a rocket from the rail and quickly opened up a four or five length advantage before the first eighth of a mile.

Brennan then grabbed hold of Roadside Delight and rated him through fractions of 26.3 and 56 before stepping on the gas in the third quarter to reach three quarters in 1:22.2.

Feel Like A Fool and Brian Sears were sitting fourth on the rail and were forced into a first over grind through the 26.2 third quarter with Fashion Delight (David Miller) sitting the pocket.

However, Roadside Delight had no real threats through the stretch and cruised home a winner in a national season's, stakes, and track record of 1:50.1.

"He was very good today," said George Brennan after his victor in the EBC elimination. "I didn’t know too much about him coming in and that's why I tried to step away from them in third quarter. I didn't have to go that much but I didn't want anyone to get close to him. He is the real deal, a very nice colt."

Taking home the second division for 3-year-old pacing colts was Fantaddy (Scott Zeron) who came first over at Samandar and cleared the leader around the final turn.

Fantaddy won well in hand in 1:52, with Samandar holding second, Flipper J third, and Bettor's Green finishing fourth also qualifying for next week's $289,925e final.

In the second division for pacing fillies, New Album and George Brennan watched Some Girls Do cut through torrid fractions of 26.1 and 54.3 before coming first over to eventually clear the tiring leader and hang on right at the wire in 1:52.

Shyaway closed four wide down the stretch for second, Southwind Jazmin hung on for third, while Song In A Major followed the cover flow to finish fourth and also qualify for next week's final.

The nine pacing colts qualifying for next Sunday night's Empire Breeders' Classic in alphabetical order are: American Arena, Bettor's Green, Fantaddy, Fashion Delight, Feel Like A Fool, Flipper J, Roadside Delight, and Samandar. Drawing in for the final spot was Sir Ziggy's Z Tam leaving Mosee Terror AE1 for the final.

The nine pacing fillies qualifying for next Sunday night's Empire Breeders' Classic final in alphabetical order are: Miss Annie J, New Album, See You At Peelers, Shyaway, Song In A Major, Southwind Jazmin, Swinging Beauty, and Whats New Pussycat. Drawing in for the final spot was Winbak Corazon with Dreamlands Roxy drawing AE 1 for next weekend's final.

Just a reminder that Tioga Downs has added live racing on Friday, May 27th with a post time of 6:50 pm.

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