CHESTER PA – After losing two days of racing due to a prolonged “backstretch” power outage, Harrah’s Philadelphia was back with a vengeance on Friday afternoon, with horses racing on the front end even harder than usual to be overhauled on a day where the mercury soared close to 90. Driver Simon Allard won both $13,000 featured paces, one on the engine, and then one with a sustained first-over move, among his five visits to Victory Lane on Friday.
The Sweet Lou gelding Lou’s Pearlman, who won in a higher class the last time he was at Philly, made the lead past the midway point of the first turn and went to be a dominant winner in the portion of the headliners devoted to males. Fractions of :26.4, :55.2, and 1:22 went up on the clock before Lou’s Pearlman, now a winner of $953,528, crossed the wire in 1:49.2, 2½ lengths to the good of Aflame Hanover for trainer Ron Burke and owners Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Elizabeth Novak, and Howard Taylor.
Allard looked to leave with the Sportswriter mare Fade Out in the feature for females, but No Win No Feed A, a slight favorite over Fade Out as both went off at 6-5, had the most early jet, with Allard setting in midpack. No Win No Feed A posted fractions of :27.1, :56.1, and 1:24.1, but Fade Out, like Lou’s Pearlman a success story at a higher level earlier at the Philly meet, went by on the turn and then defeated Southwind Icenfire by 2¼ lengths in 1:52.1 for trainer Jeff Cullipher, co-owner with Pollack Racing LLC.
The primacy on the front end on the day was reflected when Beach Cowgirl, first-time Lasix in her first start since the Fan Hanover final and a world champion freshman here last year, could not rally enough to catch pacesetter Trafalgar, a Dali mare, in 1:51.4. Allard and Burke again had the winning hand in this event, with Trafalgar able to take command in a :27.4 and then rest to the half in a dawdling :57. Beach Cowgirl came first-over with a rush to challenge hard before the 1:24.1 three-quarters and then on to the wire, but not even her pacing her own back half in :54.1 raw was enough to overhaul Trafalgar, shy three parts of a length to the winning distaff. Trafalgar is owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Yannick Gingras, and Frank Canzone.
Sunday’s 12:40 card at Philly will contain the third preliminary round of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes and Pennsylvania Stallion Series for three-year-old trotting fillies. The double winners in each section to date, Bond in the Stallion Stakes and Lillehammer Hall in the Stallion Series, are not among the entrants, which is good news for horses battling to earn enough points to make their respective Championships, with the Sire Stakes finales at Philly on Sunday, September 3. Program pages for all races at Harrah’s Philadelphia are or will be available at https://www.phha.org/harrahspps.html.