WILKES-BARRE PA – The Candyman Can and Curious Cortez both continued their strong winning form as they captured the two $16,500 divisions of the top claiming handicap pace on Saturday afternoon at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono.
The Rockin Image gelding The Candyman Can was fourth last week at the highest conditioned level against bearcats such as Jug winner Southwind Ozzi and Breeders Crown winner Sandbetweenmytoes, but he’s won his other four starts since being haltered for $37,500 by owner Eric Prevost and Darren Taneyhill on August 14. In this event, driver Braxten Boyd, making a favorable impression here as he has in his many other stops this summer, got The Candyman Can around Somebeach Baron, a winner at this level last week, just past the :26.4 quarter, and the sharp pacer tripped the rest of the timers in :54.4, 1:22.3, and 1:50.1, winning under a hold by three lengths over Somebeach Baron to have earned back $33,810 of his pricetag in only five outings.
The American Harness Drivers Club amateur series visited Pocono on a Saturday afternoon instead of during a Sunday twilight card, but the only three-time Amateur Driver of the Year, Bob Krivelin, got his bearings quickly, winning for the third time locally this campaign by sending Crews Hilltopper down the road in a 1:58 mile. Favored Winneress and driver Tony Verruso, who last week looked buried on the rail yet slipped through on the inside to win, looked as if they were to pull off the same magic this week, but they came up a length short of the winning Break The Bank K gelding, trained by Steven Brabrook for Hero Stables, which is a Krivelin enterprise.
Matt Kakaley won the first and last races for Ron Burke, and added another victory to top the drivers this day with three successes.
The $24,000 featured distaff pace on the Sunday 5:00 p.m. card has a small but select field of five – each entrant has won a high-level contest within their last three starts. Program pages are available at https://www.phha.org/downsmsppps.html.