Bontz N (American Ideal) continued to show that she is a force among the lady pacers at Saratoga Casino Hotel on Thursday afternoon. The eight year old New Zealand-bred debuted at the Spa with a win in August and immediately vaulted into Open company. Bontz N came into Thursday’s try with two victories in her four starts in the $15,000 feature and wound up as the 7-5 top choice in the wagering as started from her assigned outside post position six. Billy Dobson piloted the Gary Levine trainee in the Open and powered her out to an easy lead. Over a track labeled ‘good’, Bontz N cruised unopposed in a soft first half of 58.3 but had two challengers closing in past three quarters in 1:26.3. Itty Bitty (Jordan Derue) was first-over and got to drop in around the final turn as Come Get The Cash (Jay Randall) closed in from the back of the pack. Bontz N faced a two-pronged challenge in the stretch but had enough to prevail for the third time in her last four starts in the Open, stopping the timer in 1:55 on Thursday. Come Get The Cash has become a force at the Spa as well since debuting here in July and finished second to Bontz N in the feature to extend her “on the board” streak that has now lasted almost three months. Itty Bitty earned the show spot. Bontz N paid $4.90 to win and led an exacta and triple that came back $20.20 and $57, respectively. Her win was one of two on the day for her connections as trainer Gary Levine and leading driver Billy Dobson teamed up for another victory on Thursday with low-level condition mare Baddabingbaddabang.
The Pick Five carryover at Saratoga on Saturday will be the largest it’s been in years as a $10,950 carryover will be there for the taking. The Pick Five begins in the evening’s first race on Saturday which is set for 6:45pm.
Photo: Melissa Simser-Iovino