CHESTER PA – The favorites looked ready to pounce off cover in the $12,800 featured trot at Harrah’s Philadelphia Friday afternoon, but the temperature in the 90s had been favoring speed horses and not being kind to closers – such was the case here when pocketsitter Remarkable De Vie came up the inside to catch pacesetter With Out A Doubt in 1:56.4.
With Out A Doubt had claimed the lead before the :28.4 quarter, with driver George Napolitano Jr. (a six-time winner on the day) settling the Charlie De Vie gelding Remarkable De Vie on his back. Trixar began a first-over move nearing the :58.4 half and battled the pacesetter to and past the 1:27.4 three-quarters, with favored Heart N Soul Deo and second choice Loyal Fox Hanover second-over and third-over, respectively, and ready to take on the embattled leaders.
A trio of victorious three-year-olds with a bright future caught the eye Friday. The Captaintreacherous colt Force N Fury, winner of his Kindergarten Series Final last season, didn’t let things like making his first start of the year and having to go first-up hinder him from an eye-opening 1:51.1 win for driver Dexter Dunn, trainer Tony Alagna (who harnessed three winners, each handled by different drivers), and the ownership of Marvin Katz, Brad Grant, and Al Libfeld.
The Donato Hanover sophomore filly Dip Me Hanover, who was second in her Kindergarten Final last season, took her first win of the campaign, taking a three-ply stretch duel against her contemporary misses in a career-best 1:54.1. David Miller positioned the Linda Toscano trainee in the two-hole, sat behind front-end fighters Hannah (inside) and Iron Mine Diva (outside), then went to the inside and got the decision by a neck over the “Diva,” with Hannah right in the fight to the wire. Dip Me Hanover already has a career bankroll of $257,141 for Camelot Stable Inc., Dreamville Stable, and R-And-I Farms LLC.
Another filly, the $500,000 yearling Fifty Cent Piece, has now won half of her six career starts after fronting her field in a 1:55.4 triumph, taking a new mark. The Muscle Hill miss went her last quarter in :27.4 and withstood stubborn challenger Arclight Hanover for driver Mattias Melander, trainer/brother Marcus Melander, and the S R F Stable.
One of the few off-the-pace winners during the entire warm week so far was IC A Free Spirit, who posted a $73.80 victory in rallying wide off a hot pace. Philly has now had four $50+ winners since its recent reopening – and trainer Adrian Wisher has two of them, Fox Valley Inferno at $51.00 before and now IC A Free Spirit.