CHESTER PA – The Well Said mare Drama Act, who closed powerfully from last in the Betsy Ross Pace here at Harrah’s Philadelphia last Sunday to miss only 2¼ lengths, was sent to the top in Friday afternoon’s $20,000 Open handicap pace at the southeastern Pennsylvania oval and came home in a blistering :53.2 to win in 1:50.
Several horses were interested in front-end positioning, as is usually the case at Philly and especially on this hot day; Simon Allard got the most early speed from the winner of $961,828 and grabbed the racetrack, getting to put up “soft” fractions of :27.2 and :56.3. Mikayla, who left from the outside post seven as the slight 6-5 favorite over Drama Act and settled in fourth, started an uncovered move as the field entered the backstretch, and by pacing up the backstretch in :25.3 drew almost evenly to the pacesetter by the 1:23 three-quarters, leaving the rest in the dust. Mikayla battled on gamely but couldn’t quite sustain that kind of burst, with Drama Act having enough left in the tank to prevail by a length.
Drama Act, who is owned by The OK Corral, won for the 36th time in only 78 lifetime starts (46%). She was one of six sulky success stories on the day for Simon Allard, who even won a race where the mutuels had to be refunded because of a system failure: the event stood for racing and purse purposes.
Matching the feature’s 1:50 time was the Roll With Joe gelding Joesstar Of Mia A, who made two speed moves as the favorite to defeat Rockin On Venus by 2¼ lengths. The winner, driven by George Napolitano Jr., has now taken two straight and boosted his lifetime earnings to $619,925; Gareth Dowse is the trainer for Dowse Racing Inc.
The three-year-old pacing fillies make their debut in 2023 Pennsylvania Sire Stakes / Stallion Series action during the Sunday 12:40 card at Philly. Beach Cowgirl, undefeated lifetime and the winner of the 2022 Sire Stakes Championship in a world record 1:50, will make her 2023 debut in one of three Sires divisions. There will also be a $20,000 Open handicap for each gait, and six divisions of Stallion Series action. Program pages for all races at Harrah’s Philadelphia are or will be available at https://www.phha.org/harrahspps.html.