On Saturday night, Titus Seelster (Artistic Fella) became the first four-time winner of the Open Pace this season at Saratoga Casino Hotel. The Jackie Greene-trained pacer loves the lead and got it with relative ease in the $18,000 feature on Saturday. After having things his own way in a first half paced in 56.2, Titus Seelster faced a stiff challenge from rival Panocchio (GerryMattison) who turned up the pressure while grinding up first over. As those two did battle, He’s A Lock (Wally Hennessey) sat in the catbird seat observing the action before flying up the passing lane. It was he and Titus Seelster that would hit the line at almost the same time. Separated by the slimmest of margins on the wire, Titus Seelster got the best of longshot He’s A Lock to prevail in 1:52.2 over a track labeled ‘good.’ Panocchio earned the show spot. Titus Seelster paid $10.60 to win in the six-horse Open leading an exacta and triple that came back $82 and $131, respectively. Titus Seelster, who was driven to victory by Frank Coppola Jr, won for the ninth time in 2017.
Live racing resumes at Saratoga on Tuesday night with a 7:05pm first scheduled post.
Photo: Melissa Simser-Iovino