The Tuesday evening harness racing program atplayed host to the weekly Mares Open Handicap Pace event, with this week's edition hosting a field of seven going to battle for a $14,000 purse. Cenalta Diamond (Tim Maier) was the favorite in the wagering at 3-5 and was looking for her third straight win at the Open level. Pull The Shade (Dean Magee) is stablemate to said favorite, and was the second choice in the pools at 7/2. When the gate sped away from the field it was Delightfully Wild (8-1) with driver Nick Roland who was fastest to the front, turning back a challenge for the lead from Strings (Mooney Svendsen). Delightfully Wild served notice that she was in charge and seated her rivals all in a line behind her through a good :27.2 opener.
Just after the quarter, Tim Maier got the favorite Cenalta Diamond rolling from the back of the pack and created an outer flow, advancing to third as they hit the half mile in :56.4, and then applying heavy pressure to the leader as they headed into the last turn. Pull The Shade had picked up the second-over position and was poised to strike from there as they completed the three-quarters in 1:24.4.
Strings (8-1) had saved ground in the pocket throughout, and was still right there stalking as they straightened, but Delightfully Wild took off for the wire – so did Pull The Shade – who pulled right along- side and forged to a short lead with just 50 yards to go. Delightfully Wild ($18.20) was not content to concede the race and she powered right back for a thrilling finish and a resilient victory in 1:53.1, checking in a head in front of Pull The Shade on the line, with Strings home in third by 2¾.
Delightfully Wild is owned by Richard Morita and David Yamada, and trained by Jessie Pacheco, the sharp 6 year old daughter of Bettor's Delight has now won 29 career races, including five wins this season from eleven outings, and she has now amassed $151,375 in lifetime earnings.
Drivers Nick Roland and Rick Magee both turned in driving doubles on the Tuesday card, while Dean Magee picked up one win to draw back into a tie for the leading driver spot with Tim Maier at 18 wins apiece.
Live Racing returns to Running Aces on Saturday, June 15 with a trio of nice carryover pools – the 50 cent Early Pick-4 wager has a carryover of $2,021.92, while the 20 cent Jackpot Pick-5 stands at $7,005.65 and the 50 cent Hi-5 in Race #7 will be $1,763.54. Post time on Saturday is 6:00 pm (CDT.)
By Darin Gagne, for Running Aces Casino, Hotel & Racetrack