CHESTER PA – Developing trotters contested two $14,400 featured races at Harrah’s Philadelphia on Thursday afternoon, while for the fast-class set a pair of $11,200 events served as co-features.
Hot sire Father Patrick fathered the sophomore winners of the top purse events. The faster was the colt Pivotal, who overcame the outside post eight with ease, had a clear lead throughout, and won by 6¼ lengths in a lifetime best 1:54.2 for driver Dexter Dunn, trainer Trond Smedshammer, and the partnership of Purple Haze Stables LLC and American Viking Racing Stable.
The filly A Hopeful Prayer has now won half of her ten 2021 starts after she went to the front and held off pocketsitting Tequila N Roses by two lengths in a 1:55 mile. Andy Miller, last seen hustling to his car to get to Yonkers for an early race, stayed at Philly long enough to guide the filly for trainer/wife Julie Miller and the ownership of Andy Miller Stable Inc. and Little E LLC.
In the other co-feature, the Chapter Seven gelding Whimzical Chapter had a successful reunion with driver Tim Tetrick, who guided him the last time he visited Victory Lane. In this event Tetrick moved him to the lead in front of the stands as the favorite, saw his chances get a lot better as grinding second choice Moveoutofmyway K broke while gaining on the far turn, and then held off Great Unknown by a length in 1:53.4 for trainer Josh Green, who also co-owns with Rich Lombardo Racing Stable, David Rovine Stable LLC, and David Kryway.
A $12,600 trotting event headlining Friday’s card will feature the three-year-old filly Avenir, who finally put it all together last time and won a division of the Continental Victory event at The Meadowlands in 1:53.1; a repeat of that effort would be more than enough to handle this field, but her misbehavior must be kept under control. Post time is 12:25 p.m.; program pages are available at https://www.phha.org/harrahspps.html.