Drew Monti wins six at Batavia Downs
Written by WBTA STAFF on September 24, 2018
Drew Monti (Photo courtesy of Paul White)
By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs
It was another big Saturday night (Sept. 22) for driver Drew Monti as he captured six wins on the card, including four straight from races two through five, to vault himself back into the lead for the dash driving title at Batavia Downs.
Monti got his picture taken with Glory Jean (1:57.1, $7.20), Foreign Officer (1:54.4, $5.50), Four Diamonds (1:55.4, $5.80), Hands Off Frank (1:54, $6.80), Hardts Or Bettor (1:55.4, $2.90) and Barry’s Shelby (1:55, $8.40).
The six wins now give him 61 for the meet, one more than Kevin Cummings (60) who also had a driving double on Saturday.
Four of Monti’s wins (Foreign Officer, Four Diamonds, Hands Off Frank and Hardts Or Bettor) were behind horses trained by JD Perrin. And much like Monti, Perrin pushed himself into the dash win training lead now with 26 victories after Saturday, four ahead of James Clouser Jr. who has 22.
Clouser and Perrin are the top two Universal Trainer Rating (UTR) trainers among all those in North America with less than 500 starts this year. Clouser has a UTR of .472 and Perrin is right behind him with a .417.
The feature race on the card was an $8,500 Open III pace that was won by Barry Hanover (Shawn McDonough). Barry Hanover got away second behind Southwind Torque (John Cummings Jr.) who led the race until the three-quarters when McDonough pulled, took the lead and paced away to an impressive three-length victory in a new lifetime mark of 1:53.
Barry Hanover ($4.40) is owned by John Sixt and trained by Judy Blaun.
Racing Under Saddle (RUS) New York had an exhibition race on Saturday with a purse of $3,000 that proved to be one of the best on the card to watch.
Rider Sietski Dijkhof from the Netherlands was making her first North American RUS start and this girl came to play. Dijkhof rode No Recess from post five in the field of six and got away second behind last year’s Batavia RUS winner, Funny Photo (Sophie Engerran) and sat there until the half in 1:01.4. There Dijkhof pulled No Recess and went right after Funny Photo.
The two horses trotted side by side, stride for stride up the backside and into the far turn when Funny Photo got a half-length advantage. But when they spun into the stretch, Dijkhof asked for more from No
Recess and he responded by passing Funny Photo to win by a length in 2:02.1.
The time was a new lifetime RUS mark for No Recess and a new RUS track record at Batavia Downs, replacing the 2:03.4 mark set by Admirable Hanover in 2016.
Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Sept. 26) with post time at 5 p.m.