WILKES-BARRE PA – The Pennsylvania-sired “glamour division,” the three-year-old pacing males, were featured in their first of two consecutive Sunday stops at Pocono Downs at Mohegan Pennsylvania, contesting three $30,000 divisions of their Pennsylvania All-Stars event.
The fastest divisional winner, the Sweet Lou gelding Idiosyncratic, was also the only non-favorite to be victorious, taking a new mark of 1:50.3 as the 5-2 second choice. Simon Allard directed Idiosyncratic three-wide down the backstretch to loop a parked-the-mile horse, then kept coming in the stretch to catch Mamba, who had gone fractions of :26.4, :54.1, and 1:22.1 under pressure, by three-quarters a length, with favored Stay Grounded shuffled back then closing for third. Ron Burke trains the winner, a winner of half his twelve seasonal starts who lowered his mark from The Meadows last week by a tick, for Burke Racing Stable LLC and Weaver Bruscemi LLC.
Favored sons of Captaintreacherous took the other two cuts, one easily, one not so easily. The Brett Pelling-trained Command gradually worked up from the outside post eight by Todd McCarthy, wearing the colors of owners Diamond Creek Racing, and took command, putting up splits of :27.2, :56, and 1:23.3. Hunters Hero swung wide from second-over and closed powerfully on the far outside at 30-1, but he was a nose shy in the 1:51.1 mile, with pocketsitter Panettone Hanover just another nose shy of taking it all.
Perhaps the most impressive winner to the eye won in the slowest clocking of the three, 1:51.4. Ken Hanover, coming off a 1:49.4 Meadows Sire Stakes win, was the overwhelming choice and was driven by confidence by David Miller (career win #13,998), laying off early fractions of :27.2 and :57.1 before launching a steady uncovered bid well before the 1:24.3 three-quarters. Ken Hanover ate up the ground until taking over late on the turn, then held off second-over Lyons Surfing by 2¼ lengths while pacing his own last half in :53.4. Trainer Polie Mallar and co-owners Patrick Leavitt, William Jordan, and Dennis Osterholt look to have themselves a national-caliber colt here.
Pocono will close out its racing week with 1 p.m. cards on Monday and Tuesday, with younger horses featured on Monday and sharing the spotlight with the track’s top claiming handicap trotters on Tuesday. Program pages for all Pocono races are or will be available at https://www.phha.org/downsmsppps.html.