CHESTER PA – The front end continued to be THE place to be at Harrah’s Philadelphia at the start of the third week of the racing season, as the Elegant Man gelding Fearless Man used speedy tactics to take the $18,000 featured trot on Thursday in 1:53.3.
The young meet’s leading driver, George Napolitano Jr., let longshot Tough Mac streak to the early lead, and then brushed to the top past a lightning 26.2 opening split. The winner of $684,304 just kept gobbling up the racetrack through middle fractions of 55.1 and 1:23.2, with favored Fraser Ridge making steady but not enough forward grinding progress. Fraser Ridge continued to gain through the lane, but Fearless Man had just built up too big an advantage, and the final margin was 1¾ lengths for trainer Andrew Harris and the ownership of Rick Zeron Stables, Noblock Racing Stable, and Cool Cat Racing Inc.
The National Basketball Association playoffs start this Saturday, and a five-time participant in the NBA postseason, Sam Bowie, owns the winner of Philly’s Thursday $14,500 co-feature, Seven Iron, who equaled his mark of 1:54.2 (the horse’s name is not as much a mixed sports metaphor as you may think – the famous Masters golf tournament is also this weekend). The victorious son of Cantab Hall, a Chris Lakata trainee who has now a bankroll of $241,170, earned his victory “the hard way,” having to go first-over on the speed-favoring oval, but driver Yannick Gingras had plenty of horse late to be 2¾ lengths clear of favored Presidente Zette on the money.