The recent hot streak for reinsman Leon Bailey continued on Sunday afternoon at Saratoga Casino Hotel as the Vernon Downs leading driver scored his first ever victory in a local Open. Bailey picked up the catch-drive behind the John Podres-trained Repeal Or Replace (So Surreal) who drew post two in the $15,000 Open Pace. Dismissed at odds of 15-1, Repeal Or Replace sat third in the early going as fast fractions of 27.1 and 56.1 were posted in lap one. Bailey made his move with the four year old pacer approaching the three quarter pole and Repeal Or Replace powered past the leader before opening up a big lead of his own turning for home. By the time the favorite Artful Way (Billy Dobson) could shake loose and shift gears, it would be too late for the veteran pacer to track down Repeal Or Replace whose first Open Pace score came in 1:53.2. Artful Way came up second-best while Lake Charles (Chris Long) earned the show spot. Repeal Or Replace paid $32.20 to win in the upset score and led an exacta and triple in the feature that returned $138 and $467.50, respectively. For Bailey, the win was his first ever in a local Open and one of two on the day for the 35 year old reinsman who has been on a tear of late at the Spa. Repeal Or Replace is owned by Karma Racing Inc. of Parkland, FL.
Live racing continues on Monday afternoon with a Pick Five carryover of $2,661. The Pick Five begins in the first race which is scheduled for noon.
Photo: Melissa Simser