Day At The Track

Major upset for Royalty Again

12:38 PM 04 Aug 2020 NZST
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Royalty Again, harness racing Weekend Getaway, harness racing
Royalty Again (#4) and driver Drew Monti pull off an upset score
Tom Melanson photo
Weekend Getaway and driver Mitchell Cushing
Tom Melanson photo

Plainville, Ma --- Overlooked on the morning line and also at the windows, 36-1 shot Royalty Again turned a furious stretch drive into an instant harness racing jackpot in the $12,000 distaff pacing feature at Plainridge Park on Monday afternoon (Aug. 3).

Ry's Red Rocket (Matty Athearn) grabbed the lead and took the field to the half in :54.3, and it was there things started getting interesting. Rockin Ellie (Bruce Ranger) was parked and made her way to the leader in the second turn. Behind her was For Chips Sake (Mitchell Cushing) and Free Exchange (Drew Campbell), leaving Royalty Again (Drew Monti) last at the five-eighths.

At the three-quarter pole all seven horses were now only three lengths apart from each other and fanned three deep heading into the last turn. Ry's Red Rocket put away the challenge of Rockin Ellie leaving Free Exchange now breathing down her neck. Right behind Free Exchange was Royalty Again who was swinging four wide and still four behind, but pacing like the wind down the lane.

About 100 feet from the wire, Royalty Again bolted past everyone, took the lead and won by 3/4 of a length in 1:53.3, which was a new lifetime mark.

 

It was the first win of the year for Royalty Again ($74.00) who is owned by Richard Knight and trained by Randy Bickmore.

In the secondary $10,500 event for pacing mares, Weekend Getaway (Mitchell Cushing) came first-over from sixth at the half and chased down the leading That's Incredible (Drew Monti), eventually taking the lead at the top of the stretch and pulling away to a 1-1/2 length victory in 1:52.3.

It was a new seasonal mark and the third straight win for Weekend Getaway ($17.60) who is owned by Jeffrey Kaylor and trained by Joe Therrien.

Drivers Drew Monti and Bruce Ranger both scored driving hat tricks on Monday. Monti is currently the leading dash driver at the meet with 20 wins, Ranger is second with 15, Nick Graffam is third with 12 and Mitchell Cushing is fourth with 11.

The 11-race card yielded new lifetime marks for seven of the winning horses.

Racing resumes on Thursday at Plainridge Park with post time set for 4 p.m.

By Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts
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