WILKES-BARRE PA – The impeccably-bred Bee Forever kept his 2022 record perfect after six starts by winning the $17,500 co-featured trot at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono in a career best 1:52.3, with the co-featured pace also seeing the winner take a new record, as Casual Cool wired his field in 1:48.3.
Bee Forever, a son of Horses of the Year Muscle Hill and Bee A Magician, made only thirteen starts at two and three, and aside from a win in the Valley Victory at two, was not the equal of his royal pedigree. Trainer Nifty Norman deserves much credit for working with the gelding, now four, and enabling him to show his powerful stride and will to win for owners Melvin Hartman, Herb Liverman, and David Mc Duffee.
Leaving from the outside post eight, Bee Forever, who could not count smoothness of gait among his many assets, actually made a charted bobble past the eighth pole, but driver Tyler Buter got him straightened out quickly, and went up past the :27.3 quarter to get the lead and go on to fractions of :56.2 and 1:24.4. Pocketsitter Chapolier was positioned for an upset, but Bee Forever still had a :27.4 last quarter in him to keep that rival 1¾ lengths in arrears.
After the race, Director Of Racing Rick Kane presented Tyler Buter with a sign commemorating his 4000th driving victory, which he picked up Thursday at Yonkers.
Casual Cool certainly enjoyed coming from Jersey to Pocono in the pacing co-feature with his strong front-end effort, featuring fractions of :26.2, :54.4, and 1:21.3. Pocketsitter Betterrock tried valiantly to make an impression, but he wound up 1½ lengths behind the winning American Ideal gelding, who was driven by Jim Pantaleano for trainer Daniel Renaud and Dune Road Stables LLC. Casual Cool now has a lifetime bankroll of $520,410.
Speed held up extraordinarily well at Pocono on Saturday, which it frequently does on a warm and dry afternoon. Another proven way to get to the mountain oval’s winners circle, the claiming box, was very busy, with seventeen horses changing hands for a total of $457,250 – the biggest one-day figure since the height of Game Of Claims Series mania back four months ago.
Perennial Pocono dashwinning driving leader George Napolitano Jr. paraded back four horses today to lead the horsemen’s colony, two of them for trainer Crissy Crissman-Bier.
Stakes racing for two-year-old fillies is on tap for the next two cards at The Downs – during Sunday’s 5 p.m. card, over $260,000 will be on the line for the second prelim of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes / Stallion Series for this group, with all three winners in the first PaSS leg – Proud Mary, Beach Cowgirl, and My Little Captain – are scheduled to go. On Monday’s 1:30 program, there will be four $30,000 divisions of Pennsylvania All-Stars action for their trotting counterparts. Program pages are available at https://www.phha.org/downsmsppps.html.