Day At The Track

Harrah's feature to Jack Vernon for third straight

07:26 AM 12 Oct 2018 NZDT
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Jack Vernon, harness racing
Jack Vernon in prior win
Fred Brown photo

CHESTER, PA -Jack Vernon had to overcome the tough first-over journey in the $18,000 featured trot at Harrah's Philadelphia on Thursday afternoon, but the fast Muscle Hill gelding not only did so, but came within a fifth of his lifetime best in stopping the timer in 1:53.2.

Race favorite Tyson took command early, then submitted to a brushing move to control the pace by New Jersey Viking past the 27.3 opener. The new leader got a breather to the half in 57, but then Jack Vernon got underway under Andy Miller's handling, getting even with the pacesetter near the 1:24.4 ¾ pole, edging away on the turn, then withstanding the late comeback bid of Tyson by a half length. The victory was the third in a row for the Julie Miller trainee, who now has earnings of $191,248 for the Andy Miller Stable Inc.

A pair of $14,500 diamondgaited events were also conducted on the "Trottin' Thursday" card at Philly. In the first, the Andover Hall mare Casa Palmera regained her winning ways, able to outclose Zlatan and Band's Houdini to win in 1:54 for her sixth win in 15 starts during 2018. George Napolitano Jr. handled sulky duties for trainer Ed Lohmeyer, who shares ownership with Dr. Patricia Hogan.

Napolitano's trip in the other $14,500 event was much more adventurous -- you don't see a line like this too often: PP2 / x2oo / 3o / 2o / 2|1 / 4|2T. But such was the fate of the Napolitano-driven favorite Yuge, who broke on the lead late on the first turn, then recovered and pressured pacesetting second choice Crazy About Pat, who refused to surrender the lead under Eric Carlson's handling en route to a 1:55.1 triumph.

Gilbert Garcia-Herrera trains and owns the veteran Crazed gelding, who in winning for the 36th time in his career boosted his earnings to $818,510.

Tim Tetrick drove four winners on the Thursday card, cutting Napolitano's lead to 192-184 at the top of the Harrah's driver standings.

From the PHHA/Harrah's Philadelphia

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