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NYSS splits held at Buffalo; Stark wins 4,000th

Monday, June 22, 2009  By: Buffalo Raceway

 

The New York Sire Stakes 3-year-old colt pacers traveled to Buffalo Raceway for a Father’s Day afternoon card on Sunday, with four divisions worth nearly $40,000 each contested on the 13-race card.

 

Jason Bartlett streaked together three wins, which included two Sire Stakes victories. Starting in the fifth race Bartlett guided Handsome Harry to the winner's circle in 1:55.4. Handsome Harry is on an amazing streak himself with six straight wins and has finished in the money in all 12 of his starts in 2009 for trainer Mark Ford. Haroun Hanover and driver Matt Kakaley finished two lengths back after regaining the place position from Diamond Stick Pin and Howard Okusko Jr. down the stretch.

 

After taking a $6,000 claiming pace Bartlett guided the Paul Kelly-trained colt Outa My Head for his third win of the afternoon in 1:57.4. It was the second Sire Stakes victory for the Bettor's Delight offspring in two starts this season. Civil Yankee (Jim Morrill Jr.) set all the fractions before giving way to Outa My Head down the stretch, but held off Tyree (Ray Schnittker) to finish second.

 

In the third division of New York Sire Stakes heavy favorite OK Braveheart with Morrill in the sulky cruised home to a two-length victory in 1:56.2 over My Last Laugh and trainer-driver Ray Schnittker. Tomslastchance (Kakaley) rounded out the trifecta.

 

With a spectacular drive coming out of the first turn Kakaley won his first Sire Stakes race of 2009 in the final division aboard Spacehill. The 1:55.3 time was the fastest mile of the four divisions. Mr. Vitti (Schnittker) made a push at Spacehill down the stretch but did not have enough to catch the Space Shuttle colt. Woodstock Hanover and driver Bartlett finished third.

 

A special congratulations also goes out to John Stark Jr. The Saratoga regular was in town competing in the Sire Stakes and reached career driving victory 4,000. In the ninth race, an overnight for colt and gelding pacers, Stark pulled T Rex out from cover at the half-mile marker and was two wide with Clay Hill King Pin, driven by Ron Beback Jr., throughout the second lap before turning it on down the stretch for his 4,000th career trip to the winner’s circle.

 

Buffalo is not unfamiliar for Stark who learned the business from his father on the Buffalo-Batavia circuit before moving to Vernon Downs in the mid 1980s and eventually settling in Saratoga. (Buffalo)


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