Black Is Back victorious in Batavia Open
Written by Alex Feig on October 28, 2019
(Photo courtesy of Paul White)
By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs
Batavia, NY — It was a simple plan for Black Is Back. Take the lead, steal the half and cruise home for the win. And that’s exactly what he did in the $12,500 Open I Handicap pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Oct. 26).
Black Is Back (Dave McNeight III) left unchallenged and set early fractions of :27.3 and :57 flat to the half. Down On My Luck (Drew Monti) was in the breeze first-over at that point and continued to gain ground on the leader up the backstretch and to the three-quarters.
As they headed around the far turn and into the stretch Down On My Luck was pacing hard and trying to make up the 1-½ length deficit, but Black Is Back was the better horse this night and hung on for the win by one-length in 1:53.4.
It was the 10th win of the year for Black Is Back ($3.10) who has now earned $75,050 for owners Curtis Edholm and Mihajlo Zdjelar Sr. Mihajlo Zdjelar Jr. does the training.
The $11,000 Open II Handicap pace saw I’m So Handsome (Denny Bucceri) leave from post one, slow the half to :58.2 and then come home in back to back :28.2 quarters to hold off a fast closing Sir Pugsley (Drew Monti) and win by a length in 1:55.
I’m So Handsome ($10.80) scored his sixth win of the year for owner Mike Torcello and trainer Gerry Sarama.
The $10,000 Open III pace turned an unexpectedly fast mile when Charmbo Orbit (Denny Bucceri) drafted third for a half before pulling first-over heading to the three-quarters to run down the leading Thisjetsabookin (Dave McNeight III) and hold off a late rush from Brunello N (Drew Monti) in the stretch to win by a neck in 1:53.4.
It was a new seasonal mark for Charmbo Orbit ($21.20) who is owned by Keith Pinkowski and trained by Mihajlo Zdjelar Jr.
Those back to back wins for Denny Bucceri were two of the three he won on the card, giving him a hat trick for the evening. Drew Monti also won three races on Saturday night.
With no Pick-5 winner on Saturday, there is a $1,381 carryover and a $5,000 guaranteed pool will be offered on the Pick-5 wager on Wednesday (Oct. 30) when live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday afternoon at 5 p.m.
The guaranteed pool is part of the United States Trotting Association’s (USTA) Strategic Wagering program and as such, there will be free program pages for races one through five available on the USTA website starting on Sunday morning (Oct. 27).