As Yonkers Raceway’s signature trotting stakes race for 60 years, the Yonkers Trot has always been a personal favorite, evoking memories of my first that I covered for WFUV Radio as a student broadcaster in 1977 captured by Green Speed. The legendary publicist Mike Cohen credentialed the fledgling harness media man.
Such greats as Super Bowl, Nevele Pride and Mystic Park are among the past champs.
Hambletonian champion Pinkman heads a field of eight in this Saturday’s $500,000 Yonkers Trot, as the sophomore goes for the second jewel in the Triple Crown of Trotting on at Yonkers Raceway.
A gelded son of Explosive Matter, Pinkman drew post position seven, with Yannick Gingras driving for trainer Jimmy Takter. Gingras is looking for his first Trot victory, while Takter, who trained last season’s winner Nuncio, seeks his fourth Yonkers Trot win the past six editions. Pinkman was second in his Yonkers Trot elimination last week.
His chief opponent in the 61st edition of the Trot will be defending New York Sire Stakes champ and Dick McGuire Trot winner Crazy Wow, who defeated Pinkman by a length a week ago in 1:55.4. Crazy Wow drew post position six, and George Brennan gets the finale assignment for trainer Ron Burke; Burke’s other entrant, Habitat (Brian Sears, post two) won last week’s second elimination in 1:55.3 with Gingras doing the honors.
The field for Yonkers Trot in post position order with drivers in parenthesis: 1-Buen Camino (Trond Smedshammer), 2-French Laundry (Sears also listed), 3-Southwind Mozart (Ake Svanstedt), 4-Billy Flynn (Jason Bartlett), 5-Habitat (Sears), 6-Crazy Wow (Brennan), 7-Pinkman (Gingras), 8-Workout Wonder (Dube).
Note French Laundry and Pinkman coupled, as are Habitat and Crazy Wow.
Dealt a Winner, like Pinkman, will be trying to win the second jewel of the Triple Crown in his gait, in the $500,000 Messenger Stakes on Saturday night. Dealt a Winner was a 26-1 upset winner in the Cane Pace, drew post five in the Messenger. Another gelding, the 3-year-old son of Cam’s Card Shark gelding is trained by Mark Silva for owner Jeff Snyder.
He is coupled with Rock N’ Roll World (Dube, post six). Adios winner Dude’s the Man (Brennan) starts from the rail, with Art Rooney Pace champ In the Arsenal (Sears) landing the three-hole.
The Messenger field: 1-Dude’s the Man (Brennan), 2-Revenge Shark (Gingras), 3-In the Arsenal (Sears), 4-Roland N Rock (Dube also listed), 5-Dealt a Winner (Bartlett), 6-Rock N’ Roll World (Dube), 7-Rollin’ Ring Afire (Tim Tetrick), 8-National Seelster (Eric Carlson).
Pinkman captured the $1 million Hambletonian on August 22 at the Meadowlands with Brian Sears at the helm, a three-quarter length victor over the late-charging Mission Brief. The Yonkers Trot is the second jewel in the Trotting Triple Crown. The third leg, the Kentucky Futurity, is set for October 10 at the Red Mile in Lexington, KY.
Yonkers Raceway, Empire City Casino’s historic half-mile oval, is the place to be on Saturday night!