WILKES-BARRE PA – Manon is four-for-four this season, two of them in the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes, after she won the faster $67,991 division of the third preliminary for three-year-old trotting fillies on Sunday night at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono.
Tim Tetrick handled the talented Bar Hopping filly cautiously early, letting the front end sort itself out, then went to the top past previous PaSS winner Samosa before the :28 quarter. Middle fractions of :56.4 and 1:25.3 left Manon with plenty left in the tank for the stretch, and she cruised home in :27.4 to wind up a length ahead of the game Samosa in the 1:53.2 mile.
Third in her only start at two, Manon has shown impressive development this year for trainer Lucas Wallin and the Harbor Racing Stable LLC.
Mon Cheval, second in both of the first two legs of the Sire Stakes and coming off a Pennsylvania All-Stars victory, posted her second straight win in the other Sires division. Taking the lead in front of the stands for driver Andrew McCarthy, the daughter of harness racing royalty – Father Patrick and Shake It Cerry – set the rest of the pace as she pleased, then dashed home in :27.3 to beat out Tie One On by three-quarters of a length in 1:54.2, a clocking matching her lifetime best, set in her All-Stars race.
Mon Cheval is trained by Nancy Takter for Solveig’s Racing Partners, another in a long string of success stories for that pairing.
If you want to talk about the fastest three-year-old trotting filly of Sunday at Pocono, you’d have to go to the fastest of four $20,000 divisions of the companion Stallion Series races, where the Southwind Frank speedster Baptism, winner of an All-Stars race in 1:52.2 in her last start, went a tick faster here to lower her mark and tie for the fastest trotting mile of the year at Pocono.
What Should I Goo gave close chase from the two-hole through blistering splits of :27.1, :55, and 1:23.2 and is to be commended for staying within a length at the wire. But Baptism looked in command in the latter stages in winning her third straight (her second Stallion Series win) for trainer/driver Åke Svanstedt and the partnership of Diamond Creek Racing and Crossover Racing.
Two horses kept their 2022 records perfect in winning their StS cuts. The quicker was the Donato Hanover filly Chake (SHAH-kay), who won her fifth straight in her first stakes start, a 1:54.3 lifetime best on the engine for driver Tim Tetrick, trainer Per Engblom, and owner Daniel Sarafian. Also successful was the Cantab Hall miss I’ll Have A Lindy, a four-time winner including three times in Stallion Series preliminaries, who defeated Rosaline by a neck in 1:56.4 for driver Scott Zeron, trainer Domenico Cecere, and the Greathorse ownership.
The other StS cut saw trainer/driver Todd Schadel, who’s been on a tear with his two-year-old trotting fillies, translate that success to the three-year-old level, getting a perfect second-over trip with the 31-1 Explosive Matter miss Heart Matters and then catching favored Elegant Charm by a head in 1:55.4 to lower her mark. Schadel also co-owns the winner with wife Christine and Rick and Regina Beinhauer.
Racing continues at The Downs on Monday and Tuesday afternoons, starting at 1:30 p.m. Program pages are or will be available at https://www.phha.org/downsmsppps.html.