The snow stopped for a few hours on Friday evening in East Rutherford, NJ and live harness racing resumed at The Meadowlands thanks in a large part to a Herculean effort by the track and facilities staff.
Friday historically features trotters and pacing mares and tonight was no exception, with the $30,000 trotting feature carded as the second race of the night. DW's NY Yank crossed the river and ran his unbeaten streak to four on the year with a geared down 1:55.2 neck score over Modern Family.
Sent away as the 3/5 public choice after the defection of expected race favorite Daylon Magician (a sick scratch) DW's NY Yank and driver Yannick Gingras "stole" a 59.1 middle half after being starched to a 27 flat opening quarter, then coasted home in 29.1 against the wind. Modern Family was a well meant second and Not Afraid took the show spot. The win was one of six on the card for leading driver Yannick Gingras.
The winner is trained by Ron Burke, who won three races on the evening, for Burke Racing, Howard Taylor and Weaver Bruscemi. "Yank" has matured nicely, winning 20 of his past 31 starts for right around $300,000 after making $60,000 in his first 30 career starts.
The week's best pacing mares assembled for the eleventh and the Burke / Gingras combination took that one as well with a wire to wire score by Continual Velocity. Gingras steered her through comfortable fractions then sprinted home in 27.4 on the end of a 1:52- mile.
The recent addition to the barn scored for the first time since being purchased by Burke Racing and Weaver Bruscemi, moving past $350,000 in career cash with the win.
The other Ron Burke victory came in a nw3 trot in the fourth race, as Whata Donato sat a perfect pocket trip and stormed past Dough Dough to score a wrapped up two and a quarter length victory in 1:56.1.
On the wagering front, it was a $3 Million Friday as Total handle for the Valentine’s card was $3,000,504.
Live racing resumes on Saturday with a 13-race program kicking off at 7:15 P.M.
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