CHESTER PA – The Betting Line sophomore colt Double Metal was the most impressive of the four winners of the $12,600 features at Harrah’s Philadelphia on Friday afternoon.
Gretzky shot out to the lead in :27.2 and would not yield to challengers, getting early mover His Beats Hanover to make a break early and stringing out the field past a :56 half. Favored Betterthanthebeach pulled the pocket to challenge him, but the pacesetter would not yield at the 1:23 three-quarters and around the far turn.
Mikala, coming off both a Pennsylvania Sire Stakes win and a layoff of 20 days, had more than enough to take a clear victory in the feature division for female pacers, though the race could well have been closer had not Chase Lounge been horribly shuffled – she did come back for second. But the Always B Miki filly Mikala was still a frontstepping dominant force in the 1:51.4 mile for “Team Brennan/Drennan,” driver George Brennan and trainer Nik Drennan, and the ownership of Joseph Davino, Brad Shackman, Anthony Perretti Farm LLC, and Drennan Stable LLC.
In one of two features for trotters, heavy favorite A Hopeful Prayer repaid her many backers by leading almost all the way in 1:55.1. The sophomore daughter of Father Patrick now has three wins and two seconds in her last five starts for driver Andy and trainer/wife Julie Miller; Andy Miller Stable Inc. also owns the developing miss with Little E LLC.
In the other trotting contest, the E L Titan sophomore colt Platinum AS came from further back to tally than 95% of the winners at Harrah’s do, making up 4½ lengths in the stretch to just catch favorite Red Redemption by a head while reducing his mark over three seconds to 1:55.2. Tim Tetrick coaxed the most of the trotter for trainer Anette Lorentzon and ACL Stuteri AB.
The first ten races went to three drivers: George Napolitano Jr. (five winners), Tim Tetrick (three) and George Brennan (two, in three drives). By the eleventh race, they were all headed north (Napolitano to The Meadowlands, the other two to the stakes card at Yonkers) for evening racing; Troy Beyer heard opportunity knocking and promptly won the last three races on the card.
Elver Hanover is a slight favorite over Sandbetweenymytoes in the $16,200 featured pace at Harrah’s Philadelphia on Sunday, when post time will be 12:40 p.m. Program pages will be available at https://www.phha.org/harrahspps.html.