News & Stats



Saturday, November 20, 2021

Off a runner-up finish to Hammering Hank in the $238,700 Kindergarten Classic, Early Action came out on top with a speed-show performance to click a 1:50 victory in winning the $386,600 Governor’s Cup on Saturday (Nov. 20) at The Meadowlands. 

PJ Lou and Fourever Boy sprinted for the front as driver Brian Sears sent Early Action from post 9 for a spot up top, though he waited for the :26.1 first-quarter dust to settle before sliding to the lead. On the point, Early Action rolled unchallenged by a :54 half while Market Based tipped first over with Hammering Hank, the 1-5 favorite, perched in behind. 

Market Based began to falter to three-quarters in 1:22, forcing Hammering Hank to lunge three wide to challenge Early Action in the straightaway. The Joe Holloway trainee held his ground through the homestretch, keeping Hammering Hank at bay and hitting the line just in time to hold off 50-1 shot Mad Max Hanover, who ripped from the backfield to take second. Hammering Hank settled for third and Fourever Boy finished fourth. 

“They were pushing, trying to hold their spots there early on and I was just kind of waiting for them to get settled so I could make a move,” Brian Sears said. “In his first start back here, he might’ve been a little ouchy, but they took care of that this week and he raced super. He’s put on some really game efforts. I can’t say enough about that. He held in there for a couple of tight wins in Lexington and the effort he put in tonight was really special.”

Early Action earned his eighth win from 13 starts this season with the victory, pushing his career bankroll to $442,817 for owners Val D’Or Farms and Ted Gewertz. The Huntsville gelding paid $14.80 to win.

A LITTLE MORE: Brett Pelling trainees were firing on all cylinders during the card, as Pelling proteges won four times on the night, which included the TVG Mares (with When Dovescry) and TVG Open (Allywag Hanover). Pelling is now very much in the conversation for Trainer of the Year. … Dave Miller and Todd McCarthy led the driver’s colony with three winners apiece. … With a 10th-race total pool of $406,477 serving as the catalyst, a total of $3,390,639 was wagered on the 14-race program, giving The Big M four consecutive weekends of wagering that exceeded the $5-million mark. … Racing resumes Friday at 6:20 p.m. 


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