Vernon, NY--Spring Goal not only upset the strong favorite Coraggioso, but he also secured a fresh 1:53.1 track record for older trotting horses while winning Friday night’s (May 10) $10,000 Open Trot at Vernon Downs.
Taking over the top spot from Spring Goal following a 26.4 opening quarter, Coraggioso, who established a Vernon record for 4-year-old trotting horses after a 1:53.4 triumph in last week’s Open test, controlled the eighth race until the final furlong. Spring Goal, who then drafted in the cat-bird’s spot behind the leader until the stretch showdown, out maneuvered Coraggioso through a 28.3 final quarter to gain the win by one length.
Fotowon Photo Spring Goal set a track record for older trotting horses of 1:53.4 over Coraggioso, the track record holder for 4-year-old trotting horses.
Spring Goal’s strong showing with trainer Rick Plano at the controls resulted in the fastest mile by a member of the diagonal gait at the eight-night meeting, and it earned the 5-year-old bay battler a new win mark by one full second. It was the second local score, third in 13 season’s starts and 12th overall for the speedy son of Yankee Glide-Maragoal Miss, who is owned by Maryann Plano (Rick’s wife). He’s now accounted for more than $171,500 in Standardbred prize money.
Friday’s swift score was one of three tallies during an 11-race program for trainer-driver Rick Plano, who secured his second triple of the local campaign. The defending driving and training champ is currently tops in both categories again this season at the Downs with 20 and 10 credits, respectively.
Three-win performances during the evening were also posted by drivers Roman Lopez, Truman Gale and trainer Jocelyn Lavigne.
DOWNS DOINGS—Lopez, who trails Plano by five scores in Vernon’s current driving derby, tops the defending champ 3-2 in three-win outings at the budding meet…After the Plano-piloted Ulay Boko tied the Lopez-handled Hold On Tightly at three in event four for the local season’s longest winning streak, Hold On Tightly took back top honors in the category two races later with a career-best 1:57 triumph…Back racing after missing two scheduled programs due to an Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1) outbreak at the track, the Downs has announced that it will continue with just Friday and Saturday night live competition through May 25…Saturday’s 11-race card will begin at 6:45 p.m. and include a $10,000 Open Pace (race eight), a wall calendar giveaway and a Cash Cube promotion…A complete racing and stakes calendar, as well as additional information regarding Vernon Downs, its casino, hotel, racing and promotional events can be obtained at www.vernondowns.com.