Perfect Vixen & John Stark Jr.

Perfect Vixen, a 3yr old filly by Muscles Yankee, won Sunday afternoon’s John Mongeon Sr Memorial Trot Final. After winning 2 out of three legs of the series she trotted to victory in the $33,400 final in 1:55.4. Perfect Vixen is trained by Scott Mongeon and was driven by John Stark Jr.

Melissa Simser

Perfect Vixen & John Stark Jr.

The start to the season hasn’t been perfect for the Scott Mongeon-trained Perfect Vixen (Muscles Yankee) but it’s been close. The three year old filly came into the John Mongeon Sr. Memorial Trotting Series as the one to beat after winning four races in five starts in the 2022 campaign. The clear favorite in the ninth annual installment of the Mongeon Memorial Series, Perfect Vixen set a lifetime mark in leg one scoring in 1:56.2 with John Stark Jr. in the sulky. After drawing post eight, the filly had to settle for a third-place finish in leg two while squaring off against a strong group of competitors. On Sunday, Stark wasted very little time moving the race’s 1-5 betting favorite out to the lead where she never encountered an anxious moment before scoring in 1:56.3 to cement her role as the one to knock off heading into next Sunday’s Series Final. Titan On the Rail (Mickey McGivern) closed well to be second and finished his legs of the series with a win and a pair of seconds. Gavinator (Brett Crawford) earned the show spot.

In the other $10,000 division of the series’ third leg, Charlatan Hanover (Uncle Peter) powered out to the early lead and the leg two runner-up rolled to victory from there. Wally Hennessey piloted Charlatan Hanover to the front-running win as the Gary Levine trainee punched his ticket to next Sunday’s Final behind a 1:58 score. The win was one of four on the afternoon for Hennessey.

Live racing continues on Monday afternoon at Saratoga and will feature a Jackpot in the Pick Six that sits at $6,358 beginning in race eight. First post time is set for Noon.

 

Mike Sardella

Photo: Melissa Simser

Cash Me Out & Phil Fluet

It was familiar ground for Cash Me Out (Cash Hall) on Monday afternoon when the veteran trotter made yet another trek back to the winner’s circle at Saratoga Casino Hotel. The ten year old high-stepper recorded his 62nd career win in Monday’s $15,000 Open Trot as reinsman Phil Fluet put the Kyle Spagnola-trained trotter on the front-end in the Memorial Day feature and the millionaire cruised from there. Cash Me Out had to work hard in the early going before clicking off a first quarter of 27.1. After settling in on the engine, Cash Me Out went to the half in 57 seconds and held firm every step of the way before scoring in 1:56.3. The win was the fifth of the year for Cash Me Out and the third in the local Open Trot this season joining Gruden as the only three-time winners in the local trotting feature in 2021. With the earnings from his win, Cash Me Out moved his career bankroll to over $1.25 million for owner Mike Traylor of Ballston Spa, NY. Gigfy (Alek Chartrand) closed up the inside to finish second on Monday while longshot Navarone Hanover (Chris Long) earned the show spot. One of the race’s two even-money shots, Cash Me Out led an exacta and triple that paid $22.40 and $147, respectively.

Live racing continues at Saratoga on Tuesday afternoon with a first post time of Noon.

 

Mike Sardella

Photo: Melissa Simser-Iovino

Dewey Arnold & Jim Devaux

Monday’s matinee card at Saratoga Casino Hotel was highlighted by the 8th annual John Mongeon Sr. Memorial Trotting Series Final. The two legs of the Series were dominated by Dewey Arnold (Deweycheatumnhowe) who wound up as the public’s 1-9 betting favorite in the Final. Dave Dewhurst trains Dewey Arnold who has been a revelation in his three year old season. A solid trotter as a two year old, Dewey Arnold has had a breakout campaign in 2021 and came into Monday’s $32,900 Final on a five-race win streak. After crushing the competition in both of the legs of the Series, Dewey Arnold would likely have been a big-time favorite regardless of post position but after drawing the rail for the Final was as big of a favorite as you can have. Dewey Arnold moved out to the early lead under the guidance of reinsman Jimmy Devaux on Monday and it was lights out from there. The rising star cruised to a nine-length romp in 1:55.4 to complete the Series sweep. Battle Queen (Billy Dobson), who was the runner-up to Dewey Arnold in both legs of the Series, again came up second-best to him in Monday’s Final after getting the pocket ride behind the winner. Longshot Royal Soldier (Dan Cappello Jr), a leg two winner, earned the show spot in the Final. Dewey Arnold, who is co-owned by his trainer Dave Dewhurst and Philip Hale, of New Hartford, NY, will enter stakes season on a tear after securing his sixth straight victory. The win was one of two for Dewhurst and Devaux on the afternoon as four year old mare Sweet Sofie T (Conway Hall) cruised to a front-running score in a $10,150 race for trotters.

Live racing continues on Tuesday afternoon at Saratoga with the $32,200 J.P. Morel Memorial Pacing Series Final highlighting a 12-race card. There is a $4,372 carryover in the Pick Five pool heading into Tuesday. The Pick Five starts in the afternoon’s first race which is scheduled for Noon.

 

Mike Sardella

Photo: Melissa Simser-Iovino

Dewey Arnold & Jim Devaux

There were three divisions of the second leg of the John Mongeon Sr. Memorial Trotting Series contested on Monday afternoon at Saratoga Casino Hotel. Trotters had their final chance to acquire points towards punching tickets to the $30,000+ Final. The leg one dominant force cemented his series favorite status on Monday as Dewey Arnold (Deweycheatumnhowe) again proved much the best. The Dave Dewhurst trainee came into leg two on a four-race win streak and left it with five consecutive victories under his belt. Jimmy Devaux piloted the three year old trotter to yet another decisive, front-running romp in his $10,000 division of the series as he stopped the timer in a dazzling 1:55.4. Battle Queen (Billy Dobson) finished second to Dewey Arnold for the second consecutive week and locked up her spot in next week’s Final. Dewey Arnold gave Devaux one of his five driving wins on the matinee program.

Royal Soldier (RC Royalty) got a pocket trip for trainer-driver Dan Cappello Jr. and proved up to the task in his division of the series. The five year old cruised up the passing lane before stopping the timer in 1:57.3 to set a new lifetime mark and secure his spot in next week’s Final. Royal Soldier paid $6.30 to win as he ended the win streak of Cindy Michelle (John Stark Jr). Leg one winner Cindy Michelle was her race’s favorite as she came into leg two off four consecutive victories. The first-over trip got the best of her on Monday though she ended up a strong third and will be part of next week’s Final. There was a longshot winner in the Mongeon Memorial’s second leg. Ruthless Workout (Whataworkout) parlayed his pocket trip to victory with leading driver Billy Dobson at the controls. Ruthless Workout, who is trained by Scott Mongeon, sprung the upset while dismissed at odds of 17-1. The Final of the eighth annual John Mongeon Sr. Memorial Series is set for next Monday (May 24) and will go for a purse of upwards of $30,000.

Live racing continues on Tuesday afternoon with first post time set for Noon.

 

Mike Sardella

Photo: Melissa Simser-Iovino