Lenny Mac, Sportsmuffler take co-Opens at Batavia Downs
Photo of Lenny Mac and driver Ron Beback Jr.
By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs
It was girl’s night out in a winter wonderland as snow squalls blew through Genesee County. The mare Lenny Mac beat the boys in the $10,000 Open trot and Sportsmuffler scored in the $10,000 distaff Open pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Dec. 15).
In the week’s top trot, Lenny Mac came from off the pace to win handily, overcoming the field and the elements with the greatest of ease.
Empire Earl N (Larry Stalbaum) went right to the front and led to the half in 1:00.2. Lenny Mac (Ron Beback Jr.) then pulled first up from fifth and motored quickly alongside Empire Earl N, and then right by him by the time they hit the backside.
From there it was all Lenny Mac as she opened up four lengths at the three-quarters, six lengths at the top of the stretch and eight lengths when she hit the wire like a runaway train in 2:00.2, blowing up the tote board at 12-1.
It was the ninth win of the year for Lenny Mac ($27.40) and it padded her bank account to the amount of $54,077 for owner William Emmons and trainer James Clouser Jr.
Photo of Sportsmuffler with driver Ray Fisher Jr.
In the fillies and mares Open pace, Sportsmuffler, who had recently gotten back to her winning ways after not finishing a race on Nov. 22, caught a strong front runner at the wire in a thriller.
Miss Irish Rose A (Larry Stalbaum) left for a familiar front-end position and led the field in post-position order for almost a half mile before Squeeze This (Billy Davis Jr.) pulled and attacked at that station in :59.2.
With Miss Irish Rose A still in command by two, the outer flow stalled and Sportsmuffler (Ray Fisher Jr.) tipped three-deep around and moved to within one length of the leader. The two maintained their positions around the far turn but when they hit the top of the lane, Sportsmuffler dug in and drove on to capture a half-length victory in 1:57.4 in a three-horse photo.
It was the eleventh win in 42 starts this year for Sportsmuffler ($7.80) who now has $59,149 on her card for 2017. LAV Racing Stable Inc. owns the 5-year-old Sportsmaster mare that is trained by Mike Carrubba.
Larry Stalbaum widened his dash win lead again scoring three victories on the night. That pushed him to 130 wins for the meet, now six ahead of Ray Fisher Jr. and 11 ahead of Drew Monti. Barring a monumental turn of events it would appear Stalbaum has his first Batavia Downs driving title just about wrapped up.
One more night of racing remains at Batavia Downs in 2017 and that is Saturday (Dec. 16) with post time is 6 p.m.
There will be a guaranteed $2,500 early Pick-5 pool tomorrow with a mandatory payout. The wager runs from race one to race five and is a 50-cent minimum bet.