Trainer Jaymes McAssey surged into third place in the trainer standings at Saratoga Casino Hotel when on Friday night, the young conditioner scored three victories. McAssey, who was named the Peerless McGrath Award winner for up-and-coming trainers in 2017, had seven horses in on a trotting-heavy card on Friday night. The conditioner wasted little time making a trip to the winner’s circle when his American Soul (American Ideal) prevailed in the evening’s first race in a rare pacing event on the card.
Luke Hanners, who piloted American Soul to victory, sat behind the Jaymes McAssey-trained Dingle who debuted out of a new barn on Friday night after just being acquired by McAssey this week. That filly had little difficulty going coast-to-coast in her first start out of her new stable to win by more than eight lengths in a mile clocked in 1:59.1.
From there Hanners and McAssey teamed up once again with trotter Out Of The Blue who pocket-pulled on the race’s favorite approaching the three-quarter pole before rolling to an upset win at odds of 8-1 and secure a hat trick for her connections. In the evening’s nightcap, it was that team again as McAssey’s Explosive Ridge went off as the 8-5 second choice in the wagering and proved up to the task when Hanners guided Explosive Ridge to the front-end and never looked back.
The veteran trotter held firm in the stretch to prevail for second time on the season and complete a grand slam for Luke Hanners and Jaymes McAssey. Hanners sits firmly in the third spot among local trainers in 2022 while McAssey has surged into fourth after his huge night on Friday.
Photo: Melissa Simser