CHESTER PA – A twelve-race card has been drawn for Friday’s opening program of the 2021 racing season at Harrah’s Philadelphia, which will begin at 12:25 p.m.
The richest purse race on the day will be the last event on the program, a $12,800 pace for up-and-coming male horses. Father Nuno, fastest qualifier during the inaugural qualifying session here last Friday at 1:53.3, will be looking to make up for lost time as he starts from post four for driver George Napolitano Jr. and the brother team of trainer Tom and owner John Cancelliere: he has not raced in 497 days, since he was second to Papi Rob Hanover in the 2019 Governor’s Cup final.
The $11,600 fast-class co-featured pace, slotted for race six, will see Rock The Town (post one) and Joesstar Of Mia A (post four), who were 1-2 in the fastest mile of last week at Pocono, 1:50.3, taking on High Impression (post two), second to the blooming star Nicholas Beach last time out.
A revamped, aggressive wagering schedule, aiming to give patrons the opportunity for more big-money payouts, has been put in place. There will be two Pick-4s, both with 15% takeout and a 50-cent base, on Sunday comprising the first four and last four races; and a Pick-5 (18% takeout, 50-cent base) will be offered on races five through nine.
The Super Hi-5 wager, also with 15% takeout and a 50-cent base, will replace the Jackpot Hi-5s and be offered on the third, ninth, and last races. The new Super Hi-5 will pay out if a winning combination has been sold, but there will be a carryover if there are no winning tickets, as will be the cases with Superfectas (which along with Trifectas will carry a lower takeout this season) and all Pick-3/4/5s.
The Harrah’s Philadelphia driving colony, which can go with any group in North America, is scheduled to include on Opening Day George Napolitano Jr., the defending dash champion; last year’s UDR king Tim Tetrick; Yannick Gingras, the only other driver besides Napolitano and Tetrick to win a Philly driving championship after the track’s first year; and two-time North American/USHWA Driver of the Year Dexter Dunn. On the training side, 2020 champion and perennial North American powerhouse Ron Burke will send out Sailboat Hanover and High Impression in the featured events.
Program pages for Harrah’s Philadelphia racing will be available at https://www.phha.org/harrahspps.html.