Friday, May 16, 2014

Little Santamonica anchors Byron hat trick at Tioga


by James Witherite, Tioga Downs racing media

Little Santamonica stands tall in the Miracle Mile 1
distaff pace (Fred Brown photo)
Newcomer Little Santamonica's ($3.50) 1:52.0 victory in the featured $14,000 Miracle Mile 1 distaff pace was the highlight of a driving hat trick for Aaron Byron, who propelled himself to the top of the Tioga Downs leaderboard with a three-win night on Friday (May 16).

With Southwind Trini (Jim Marohn, Jr.) calling the early shots, Byron brushed to the fore with Little Santamonica through a sensible :28.2 first quarter.  The six-year-old Little Steven mare never looked back from there, accelerating clear on the far turn and being driven to hold a 2-1/4 length margin over Southwind Trini at the winning post.  Sinspirational (Mike Simons) stayed on in traffic to finish an even third.

Jordan Hope trains Little Santamonica for owner Kelly Hope.

Byron also scored driving wins with Paystobea Meangirl (1:58.3) and Crazyboutdadrummer (1:56.0) on the evening's 10-race card.

Racing resumes at Tioga on Saturday, May 17, with the first of 11 races scheduled for 6:15 p.m. EDT.