Mc Tinys Hope and Ontario-bred Artful Impulse were victorious in their respective $9,700 trotting and pacing feature events hosted by Pompano Park on Wednesday night.
Mc Tinys Hope, flawlessly handled by Ben Mc Neil and fresh off a wire-to-wire 1:54.1 win in her "Winner's Over Trot" a week ago, used the exact same strategy this night, zipping to the front in the early stages of the mile and clocking soft early panels of :28.4 and :58 before really getting down to business with a :27.4 third quarter and :28.4 finale to pin a two and a half length defeat on On The Tab (Bruce Ranger) in 1:54.3. Gold Savage (Mickey Mc Nichol), away third in the early going, stayed in that position the entire route, finding himself three and a half lengths away on the line with My Revenuer and Tug River Dylan net in the sextet.
In a post race interview, Mc Neil said, "Prior to this race tonight, this mare's two best performances were on the front end, so I decided not to tinker with success and sent her again. When we got away with that rated half, I felt really confident she could go all the way. All I did was whistle at her entering the backside and off she went on her own. This was a pretty solid group of horses in here, so I am very proud of her performance tonight."
Trained by brother Jack Mc Neil III for Ellen Mc Neil, this seven-year-old daughter of CR Excalibur won for the fifth time this season--26th lifetime--to send her seasonal bounty to $39,996, surpassing her earnings for all of last season in 32 starts. She's banked $148,770 lifetime to go along with a Meadowlands mark of 1:53.3.
As the 2-5 favourite, Mc Tinys Hope returned $2.80 to win.
In the companion event for pacing mares, Artful Impulse, superbly handled by Andy Santeramo, wired her foes in 1:53.3, holding off the late-surging Goldstar Rockette (Mickey Mc Nichol) by three parts of a length with the fast-closing Mach Me Not (Bruce Ranger) third. Taylor B Swift and Keystone Christa picked up the final two awards in the septet.
Artful Impulse, trained by Jim Mc Donald for the Twenty Four Carrot Racing stable, was on the engine from her outside eight post when the gate opened and briefly engaged Taylor B Swift for the lead before securing it around the opening turn and clocking an initial quarter timed in :27.3.
In the lane the first go-around, driver Rob Hoffman sent his charge, Lady Ideal, on the prowl, but that strategy backfired as Artful Impulse kept her at bay through a :56.2 half. Nary a challenge developed as Artful Impulse blitzed her way through a :28.1 third panel, turning for home with a comfortable lead and securing it all the way home with a :29 finale.
After the race, Santeramo related, "She [Artful Impulse] seems to do her best work on or near the front, so I sent her winging and she responded like she usually does. When I saw Rob's mare [Lady Ideal] coming after me, it was a little too late to yield, so I just kept on truckin'. This is a quality mare that is trained by a great trainer, so I thought she'd have enough left to get home...and she did!"
The win was number four of the semester for the four year-old daughter of Artistic Fella, sending her 2015 earnings to $29,875 and lifetime bankroll to $128,260.
As second choice in the betting, Artful Impulse paid $9.20 to win, keying a 8-4-7-2-3 Super Hi-5 payout of $304.44 to multiple winners for their 20-cent investment. The Super Hi-5 carryover into the next racing program, Saturday, is $4,134.22.
The training win for Mc Donald was one of four on the night as Dominum Deo ($3.20, Ranger) took the "Winner's Over" 2 trot in 1:55.4, American Superman ($8.00, Ranger) grabbed a conditioned trot and The Muscler ($9.00, Santeramo) reported home first in a conditioned-optional claiming trot.
Post time for Saturday's card is 7:30 p.m. with a Winner's Over Pace sharing the spotlight with three events featuring the visiting amateur drivers from Spain.