Favorites dominate second leg of Massachusetts Sire Stakes

by Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

Plainville, MA — There were no real surprises in the $162,300 second leg of the Massachusetts Sire Stakes (MASS) for 3-year-olds at Plainridge Park on Tuesday afternoon (Oct. 9). All five first-leg winners repeated, four of them heavy favorites and four of them in runaway fashion. Driver Shawn Gray had a huge afternoon, leading all other reinsmen by winning three of the five series races.

$42,150 3-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Trot

Hashtagmadeyalook held his ground for a repeat win in Massachusetts Sire Stakes action at Plainridge Park.

Winner: Hashtagmadeyalook (Chapter Seven-Royalty Free) 1:56.4
Owner: Ray Campbell Jr.
Trainer: George Ducharme
Breeder: Ray Campbell Jr.
Mutuel: $2.60

The heavy 1-5 favorite Hashtagmadeyalook (Shawn Gray) took command of the race with 2-1 second choice Kinda Lucky Lindy (Greg Merton) sitting right behind him. After settling the field to the quarter, Gray grabbed leather and went :30.1 and :29.3 the next two panels. Approaching the top of the lane, it was a two-horse breakaway with Kinda Lucky Lindy pulling the pocket with dead aim on Hashtagmadeyalook. With Merton driving hard, Kinda Lucky Lindy made up ground with every stride. But Hashtagmadeyalook held sway under a line drive from Gray and won by a neck in 1:56.4.

Hashtagmadeyalook has now banked $71,615 on the strength of five wins this year.

$39,700 3-Year-Old Filly Trot

Winner: Ithinkthatsmine (RC Royalty-Super Starlet) 1:56.3
Owner: Ray Campbell Jr.
Trainer: George Ducharme
Breeder: Ray Campbell Jr.
Mutuel: $2.20

If the 1-9 odds didn’t prove it, her performance certainly did. Ithinkthatsmine (Shawn Gray) was in a league of her own in leading the field of state-bred peers from gate to wire. Setting fractions of :28.2, :58 and 1:26.4, Ithinkthatsmine had a five-length lead at the top of the stretch as Gray already had her wrapped up at that point. However, heading towards the wire, she still pulled away more to win by six in 1:56.3.

It was the eighth win of the year for Ithinkthatsmine, who now has earned $92,080 in 2018. The win also gave trainer George Ducharme a training double in MASS races on Tuesday.

$40,100 3-Year-Old Filly Pace

Winner: Delco Dusty (Jereme’s Jet-Gypsys Good Girl) 1:55.3
Owner: Jesse DeLong
Trainer: Jimmy Nickerson
Breeder: Jesse DeLong
Mutuel: $5.40

Rock Me Threetimes (Mitchell Cushing) flew off the gate and smoked the first quarter in :26.3 while Delco Dusty (Shawn Gray) took full advantage of a garden trip. As the race progressed, the field remained in single-file order past the half and to the three-quarters in 1:25.2. Raging with pace at that point, Gray pulled Delco Dusty halfway into the final bend and the filly responded to the move. Delco Dusty opened up a three-length lead at the top of the lane and paced away to an easy six-length victory in 1:55.3.

It was the third win of the year for Delco Dusty, with all three coming in her last three starts.

$20,175 3-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Pace (Division 1)

Tom Melanson photos

I’m A Clown drew off boldly through the final quarter of a 1:53.3 mile in his MASS division.

Winner: I’m A Clown (I’m Gorgeous-Lordy Miss Scarlet) 1:53.2
Owner: Nelson Malin III
Trainer: Kevin Switzer
Breeders: KDK Standardbreds and Nelson Malin III
Mutuel: $2.10

I’m A Clown (Mitchell Cushing) fired off the wings and took the lead before yielding that spot to a game Shiplap (Ivan Davies), who rushed to the quarter in :27. But just as that timer was tripped, Cushing had I’m A Clown out and rolling once again to retake the lead, and this time it was for good. After cruising past the half and hitting the three-quarters in 1:24.4, I’m A Clown was gone. On top by three in the turn, by eight at the head of the lane and by 12 at the wire, I’m A Clown annihilated the field for a second straight week, winning in 1:53.3.

The winning time was a new lifetime mark for I’m A Clown.

$20,175 3-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Pace (Division 2)

Winner: Pembroke Pharoah (Baron Biltmore-Migraine) 1:54.4
Owners: William Varney and Heath Campbell
Trainer: Valerie Grondin
Breeders: William Varney and Valerie Grondin
Mutuel: $2.60

Pembroke Pharoah (Heath Campbell) led the whole race and appeared under no duress doing it. After taking the field to the half in :56.4 with Twelve (Eddie Davis Jr.) sitting on his back, Pembroke Pharoah faced a challenge from Beantown Elijah (Jimmy Whittemore), who pulled first-over and tried to apply more pressure going up the back stretch. With the field close at the three-quarter pole, Campbell let Pembroke Pharoah out a notch and his charge responded well. He opened up a three-length lead around the last turn and then pulled away down the lane with Campbell as a passenger to win in 1:54.4.

It was the third win in a row and eighth of the year for Pembroke Pharoah, who now has collected $61,661 in purses this season.

There is a break in MASS action next week. The series will resume on Oct. 22, when the 2-year-olds reconvene, and on Oct. 23, when the 3-year-olds get back together. The finals for both age groups will be held on Oct. 30.

For more information on the Massachusetts Sire Stakes, please log on to www.sominc.net.

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