WILKES-BARRE PA – Looking like he could have been a factor in the big Allerage FFA Pace at Lexington tomorrow, Ruthless Hanover lived up to his name on Saturday afternoon at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, winning a $25,000 handicap commandingly in 1:49.1 in 50-degree weather and not with the easiest of trips.
George Napolitano Jr. was out with cover with the five-year-old Somebeachsomewhere gelding until the late on the first turn, then went up uncovered, passing the quarter in :26.4, making the lead the first time past the wire, and putting up midsplits of :54.2 and 1:21.3 while separating more and more from his opposition. Napolitano sat stone-still through the lane as Ruthless Hanover left millionaire Southwind Gendry five lengths behind for his third straight win since cutting the lightning pace in Allywag Hanover’s equaling of the Philly track record five weeks ago. Ruthless Hanover has now earned $322,173 for Team Cancelliere, trainer Tom and owner John.
A pair of $17,500 supporting features, one on each gait, also highlighted the Saturday card. On the pace, Ilikemebettor A indicated he has a bright future of him in North America, as the Bettor’s Delight gelding is undefeated after two Stateside starts, bettering his 1:50.2 time in his debut by a tick here. In neither race has Ilikemebettor A had an soft journey, Saturday spending good parts of early fractions of :26.2 and :54 two-wide, but the Aussie finally took over the point and just kept on rolling to a 1:22.2 three-quarters, then staying safe to the wire, 1½ lengths ahead of Shnitzledosomethin. Marcus Miller drove for trainer/father Erv, whose Erv Miller Stable Inc. shares ownership with Douglas Overhiser.
The co-feature on the trot went to the Credit Winner gelding Dee’s Red Delicious, who took advantage of opportunity and trotted on to victory in 1:53.4. Odds-on favorite Lexus Kody, going for his fourth straight win, was sent to the top and put up fractions of :28.1, :57, and 1:25.4, with Matt Kakaley keeping Dee’s Red Delicious close-up then going to the Pocono Pike. Whether “Delicious” would have caught the pacesetter will never be known because Lexus Kody broke in midstretch, allowing the winner to have a one length margin at the wire, with Lexus Kody placed from second to third for a breaking violation, elevating Focus Pocus to the second spot. Dee’s Red Delicious has now earned $397,375, and he is trained by Travis Alexander for Fiddler’s Creek Stables LLC.
Marcus Miller and George Napolitano Jr. each drove three winners during the afternoon’s action.
Pocono is currently racing on a Saturday – Monday – Tuesday schedule, with post time each racing afternoon at 1:30. Program pages for all Pocono races are or will be available at https://www.phha.org/downsmsppps.html.