WILKES-BARRE PA – The Captaintreacherous colt Ken Hanover, away from the races since rocketing home in :25 to be second to Christchurch in a Meadowlands Pace prep, showed no ill effects from the time away, setting a soft pace then turning up the speed to win in 1:51.3 in the $17,000 featured pace at Pocono Downs at Mohegan Pennsylvania on Saturday afternoon.
David Miller paid a visit to Pocono to guide Ken Hanover, and he patiently guided the sophomore past Night Hawk, defending the rail, just at the :28 quarter, and such was the respect the winning favorite commanded that he got away with soft midrace fractions of :57 and 1:25.1. Miller asked his colt for speed through the last quarter, and Ken Hanover responded by bulleting home in :26.2 (against a day-long stretch headwind), with the game Night Hawk staying with him to miss by 1¼ lengths, with the rest of the field never factoring.
Ken Hanover, who has two PA Sire Stakes wins and a PA All-Stars victory among his five triumphs this season, is trained by Polie Mallar, co-owner with Patrick Leavitt, William Jordan, and Dennis Osterholt, and looks ready to give the “glamour division”’s top colts another crack in the near future.
In the $17,000 featured trot, Balenciaga was also quite impressive with a 1:52.1 win. Matt Kakaley tucked early as sharp fractions of :26.4 and :56 were posted, then moved the Chapter Seven gelding uncovered, gradually worked to the lead past the 1:24.1 three-quarters, and just kept pouring it on to win by 10½ lengths. Paul Kelley trains the talented trotter for S R F Stable and Crawford Farms Racing.
Matt Kakaley had four winners on the Saturday card; Tyler Buter and Anthony Napolitano three; Simon Allard and “Miller” two (one each for David and Marcus).
The two-year-old pacing fillies will dominate the 6 p.m. card at Pocono on Sunday, with four Sire Stakes divisions and five Stallion Series sections likely showcasing many emerging top performers. Program pages for all Pocono races are or will be available at https://www.phha.org/downsmsppps.html.