Live harness racing returns to Batavia Downs in new season
An enthusiastic crowd lined the fence to welcome back live harness racing at the oldest lighted harness track in North America and their zeal was rewarded with a great slate of exciting contests on a warm summer night.
The feature race was the $9,500 Mares Open Pace where newcomer Bazooka Terror established her status the first start out of the box as she soundly defeated her competition in 1:55.4.
Bazooka Terror is owned by her trainer, Leonard Segall of Clearwater, Fla. This was her sixth win of the year and it pushed her bankroll to $43,904 for 2014. She returned $6.20 for the win.
In the co-featured $7,500 Open Mares Trot, Love Me Do took a huge step in class and thought nothing of it as she cruised to a five-length victory in a seasonal best time of 1:59.
Love Me Do was claimed last week for $8,000 after winning that race from post seven in 2:00.1. Apparently liking what he bought, trainer Alex Giuliani wasted no time in promoting her to the top level for her sex and gait this week and the move paid off.
Love Me Do left and tucked third as 3-2 favorite Fiorentina (John Cummings Jr.) took the front and began to cut the mile. After a 29 second quarter and 59 second half, Love Me Do tipped at the five-eighths and took the lead past the three-quarters in 1:28.4. When she got the lead she got away from the pack and scored an easy five-length victory, her sixth of the year.
The time of 1:59 was a seasonal mark for Love Me Do and the winners share raised the annual earnings to $31,397. She paid $10.20 to win.
Love Me Do is owned by Mark Jakubik of West Seneca.
Reinsman Kevin Cummings carried his hot hand over from the recently concluded Buffalo meet winning four times on opening night while 2013 Batavia leading dash driver Shawn Mcdonough notched a triple.
Batavia Downs returns live this Friday night (July 25) with 12 races on the card. For more racing information, a list of racing promotions, or to watch race replays as soon as they are declared official, log on to www.bataviadonwsgaming.com. Or if you would like to bet online and watch live streaming coverage of the races as they occur, log on to www.bataviabets.com and open an account.