Monti, Shepard, Woodburn sweep Batavia features
Written by WBTA STAFF on September 23, 2019
(Photo courtesy of Paul White)
By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs
Batavia, NY — Oh Canada! The Ontario based owner-trainer combination of Robert Woodburn and trainer Patrick Shepherd shipped south on Saturday (Sept. 21), enlisted the services of resident reinsman Drew Monti and then watched as their stable stars Sir Pugsley and Down On My Luck took the top two paces of the week at Batavia Downs.
In the $12,000 Open I Handicap, Sir Pugsley took an early seat at the back of the pack in the abbreviated field of five while Some Attitude (Shawn Gray) went to the half at his own pace of :56.3. As the field was rounding turn three, Monti got Sir Pugsley underway at the five-eighths and the afterburners were on. Sir Pugsley took off like a jet and went from fifth to first during the third quarter timed in :28.1 and continued his assault in the turn where he cleared and opened up two-lengths by the time they hit the stretch.There, Sir Pugsley just strode away down the lane to win by 2-¾ lengths in 1:53.2.
It was the fifth win of the year for Sir Pugsley ($3.30) who now boasts $63,395 in purses this year.
Then in the $11,000 Open II Handicap, Down On My Luck left sharply along with Notabadgame (John Cummings Jr.) who took the lead and cut unchallenged fractions of :27.3, :56.4 and 1:25.1 in the first three panels of the race. Monti pulled Down On My Luck from the pocket at that point, sat in the breeze around the far turn and ran down the leader in the stretch to win by 2-½ lengths in 1:53.3.
It was the third win in a row at Batavia Downs for Down On My Luck ($5.10) and seventh victory of the year overall. The 5-year-old son of Camluck-False Alert had now earned $41,487 this year.
Monti and Shepherd completed a driver-trainer hat trick in the final race of the night when Fool Me Once ($5.10) pulled second-over from fourth at the half and put the swoop to the group three-wide around the last turn to win by 2-½ lengths going away in 1:54.1. Carl Kuepfer owns the winner.
Billy Davis Jr. also had a driving hat trick on the evening.
Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Sept. 25) with post time set at 5 p.m.