So Nice (Ponder) pulled off the mild upset in Friday’s feature at Saratoga Casino Hotel. The Amber Buter-trained mare recorded her fifth win on the season and it came in the $15,000 Fillies and Mares Open as she parlayed her pocket ride to victory. Super Soph (Frank Coppola Jr) charged out to the early lead and parked out the race’s favorite Godiva Seelster (Wally Hennessey) in sizzling first half fractions of 26.3 and 54.2 over a track labeled ‘good.’ Super Soph still led turning for home but was faced with a two-pronged challenge as rivals So Nice and Bazooka Terror (Billy Dobson) closed in. So Nice, the track’s current record holder for aged pacing mares behind a 1:52 score late last season, rallied up the rail to prevail in 1:52.1 with Mark Beckwith in the sulky. Longshot Bazooka Terror was the runner up in the Friday feature while Super Soph held on for third. It was victory number twenty in the career of the six year old distaffer So Nice who returned $14.00 to win and led an exacta and triple that paid $118 and $449.50, respectively.
Live racing continues on Saturday night with a first post time set for 6:45pm.
Photo: Melissa Simser-Iovino