Monticello, NY --- Rompaway Alvin trotted to a track record-equaling victory in a time of 1:57 on Thursday afternoon (Sept. 5) at Monticello Raceway. That clocking tied the mark for older trotting geldings initially set by Cornishman N and driver Bruce Aldrich, Jr. back in 2011.
His gate-to-wire victory in Monticello Raceway’s featured trot on Thursday caught most by surprise, even driver Mike Merton. Rompaway Alvin, second choice in the betting, figured to be one of the main competitors but his stunning 13 length triumph didn’t.
|Geri Schwarz photo|
|Rompaway Alvin romped to a share of the Monticello track record for older trotting geldings.|
“When he lost both of his ear plugs behind the gate I didn’t realize what a ride I was going to have,” noted Merton. “When the gate sprung he left like a pacer and he took off like a wild horse.
“We had a big lead at the quarter and an even bigger one at the half. He was still strong passing the three-quarters and he really surprised me when he kept on charging instead of coming back to me like I thought he would.
“Damn, I was just a passenger once we left the gate but I thoroughly enjoyed the ride, which was my fastest ever by a trotter on a half-mile track.”
After trotting through fractions of :28.1, :57.2 and 1:26.2, at the wire Rompaway Alvin had 13 lengths over runner-up Game Changer and driver Austin Siegelman. Samsawinner was third for Kyle DiBenedetto. The 1-2 betting favorite, Broadway Victory, finished fourth for Bruce Aldrich, Jr.
However it was found out later that there was somebody in Rompaway Alvin’s connections who wasn’t surprised by the 1:57 mile and it was none other than the trotter's trainer, Jimmy Doherty, Jr.
“He won in 1:53.2 last year at Tioga (Downs) and won nine times so I know he’s got a big engine,” Doherty said. “But what made him so good today was that he raced just five days ago and he thrives on work.”
Rompaway Alvin came into the contest off a 1:56.3 victory on Aug. 24 at Tioga Downs and Thursday’s victory was the horse's third this year. And he paid $8.30 for win.
Rompaway Alvin is owned by amateur driver Dave Yarock.
That victory was part of a trainer-owner double on the card. They combined for a 1:59.3 trotting victory with Nowerland Nathan in the last race, only that trotter was driven by Bruce Aldrich, Jr.