Stealing time
Tuesday, October 15, 2013 - by Tim Bojarski

When you take the best horses in the sport and allow them to ply their trade over what is probably the fastest racing strip in the business, history will surely be rewritten.


And with that recipe in place, the elimination races of the Breeders Crown this past weekend (Oct. 11-12) at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs provided a display of equine expeditiousness the likes of which won’t soon be repeated.


The headlines over the weekend highlighted the horses who won the races, but they didn’t tell the whole story as the speed feats were even greater once you read between the lines. Although there were six world records tied or broken on Friday and Saturday in the Breeders Crown eliminations, world records were actually tied or broken 18 different times over the course of the two days.


Starting on Friday night, records began to fall in the 2-year-old pacing filly division. In the first elimination, Gallie Bythe Beach tied the world record of 1:50.3 in her elimination. Just behind her and also timed in 1:50.3 was Southwind Silence.


In the second elimination of the same division, Allstar Rating broke that world record, pacing in 1:50.1. But Precocious Beauty, Act Now and Uffizi Hanover (who finished second, third and fourth) also broke it, each pacing between 1:50.1 and 1:50.2.


Father Patrick set the new world standard for 2-year-old trotting colts winning his elimination in 1.52.1. But Nuncio, who cut the whole mile for him and only finished a length behind, trotted in 1:52.2 so he also beat the former mark (1:52.3).


On Saturday night, Somestarsomewhere beat the 2-year-old colt pacing world record by a fifth of a second, winning his elimination in 1:49.3. But runners-up Sometimes Said and So Surreal actually tied the old mark, as both paced in 1:50 flat. 


In the glamour division, Lucan Hanover rewrote the record books, setting a new world record for 3-year-old gelding pacers in 1:48 flat, besting the old mark by three-fifths of a second. But second-place finisher Sunshine Beach was also timed in 1:48 flat and also broke the record while third-place finisher Captive Audience tied the old mark, pacing in 1:48.3.


And finally, after having just set a new world record for 4-year-old trotting mares on a half-mile track at Delaware, Ohio, two starts ago, Maven won in 1:51.4 and shattered the standard for sex and gait on a five-eighths-mile track. In finishing second, Check Me Out (1:52.1) also beat the old mark and Real Babe and Win Missy B (who both trotted in 1:52.3) tied it.


All of these performers will reconvene on Saturday (Oct. 19) to try to outdo themselves in the chase for the lucrative finals of the sport’s premier series. Joining them will be no less than a dozen more horses that have tied or broken world records for various age, gait and track sizes over the course of the year.


Right now the weather for Saturday afternoon is supposed to be around 57 degrees with only a 10-percent chance of rain. So pending a drastic change in that forecast, conditions should be as close to ideal as you could imagine for the middle of October. It will be interesting to see what they all can do for an encore.