CHESTER PA – The Rocknroll Hanover mare Rock N Shard N seems headed for Open company as she won for the third time in her four-race United States career, a 1:51.3 mile over a “sloppy +1” surface in the $17,000 distaff pacing feature during a Friday evening card at Harrah’s Philadelphia.
Driver Art Stafford Jr. patiently guided Rock N Shard N on her uncovered grind from sixth while Newsday went to the front and set fractions of :27, :55.4, and 1:23.1. These two were close to being on even terms as they turned for home, but despite the overland journey Rock N Shard N proved the stronger late, two lengths to the good of Newsday, with pocketsitting Ghosttothepost third. The Kiwi mare is another of a long line of successes for trainer Joshua Parker over the last couple of seasons; Parker also owns Rock N Shard N with Nanticoke Racing Inc. and Barry Spedden.
In the co-feature for trotters, the Lucky Chucky mare Lucky Sheila swung wide off of cover late on the far turn, then just had enough to catch pacesetter Spee Club by a neck in a lifetime best 1:56.2. Pat Berry did the driving for trainer Chris Marino and Robert Weinstein.
The World’s Fastest Trotter, Homicide Hunter (1:48.4 at Lexington last year), drew post one for a $30,000 Great Northeast Open Series contest for trotters on Sunday. He has to have better luck than he did last week in his 2019 bow at Pocono, where he drew the outside post eight, tucked in, then got shuffled back and could not enter contention. A better trip seems likely for Homicide Hunter and driver Yannick Gingras in the horse’ second trip for trainer Ron Burke, though first leg winner Melady’s Money may have something to say about that.