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Cane Pace to Betterthancheddar

Saturday, September 10, 2011  By: Ken Weingartner
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Wilkes-Barre, PA --- Betterthancheddar and driver Yannick Gingras rallied in the stretch to win Saturday’s (September 10) $342,875 Cane Pace by a neck over Townslight Hanover in a stakes record 1:49.2 at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs.



The Cane Pace is the first jewel in the Pacing Triple Crown.



Betterthancheddar, who was 4-1 from post seven, went to the lead in the opening quarter-mile, which he reached in :25.4. He yielded the front to Shadyshark Hanover as the field hit the half-mile point in :53.2.



Roll With Joe, the 3-5 favorite, moved three wide on the backstretch and challenged Shadyshark Hanover for the lead entering the final turn, but was unable to sustain his charge as the leader reached three-quarters in 1:20.4.



As the horses reached the stretch, Betterthancheddar burst inside Shadyshark Hanover and took the lead. He held off Townslight Hanover and driver Andrew McCarthy to notch his fifth win in 11 starts this year. Powerful Mist was third and Shadyshark Hanover was fourth.



Betterthancheddar is owned by Steve Calhoun and trainer Casie Coleman’s West Wins Stable.



The race was to be contested at Tioga Downs in upstate New York, but was moved to Pocono Downs because of flooding in the region.



The Cane Pace is followed by the Little Brown Jug (Sept. 22) and the Messenger Stakes (Nov. 12) in making up the Pacing Triple Crown. Ten horses have won the Pacing Triple Crown, most recently No Pan Intended in 2003.



Click here to watch a replay of the Cane Pace.



Earlier in the evening, Pocono also hosted two divisions of the Shady Daisy, an event for 3-year-old pacing fillies that was also originally scheduled at Tioga.



In the first division, which carried a purse of $60,050, Krispy Apple paced away from her foes after taking the lead on the backstretch, winning in 1:50. Tim Tetrick did the driving for Mark Kesmodel, as the filly won for the ninth time in 14 tries this season. Some Girls Do finished second and Miss Annie J was third.



In the second Shady Daisy split, with a purse of $62,050, Drop The Ball fought hard for the early lead and held up strong late to win in 1:50. Yannick Gingras was aboard for trainer Ross Croghan, as Drop The Ball picked up her second win of the year, with the other coming in the Mistletoe Shalee at the Meadowlands. Myluvmylife finished second while New Album was third.



-- James Beviglia also contributed to this report

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