Wilkes-Barre PA --- As expected, free-for-all pacing millionaires Warrawee Needy and Razzle Dazzle put on a “dazzling” show in qualifying action at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs on Thursday morning (Oct. 3), with Warrawee Needy, a son of E Dee’s Cam, turning back Razzle Dazzle in 1:50 -- but both were equally impressive.
Warrawee Needy was the tighter of the two, having won a qualifier here in 1:52 last Thursday, while Razzle Dazzle had been absent from the racetrack for more than two months.
Mark MacDonald hustled Warrawee Needy away from post three to set the pace, while Razzle Dazzle took a three-hole tuck for Joe Pavia, Jr. from the six post and rode there until moving down the backstretch, then getting to retuck the pocket on the turn -- something that’s going to happen when the timer reads :28, :56.2, then 1:23.1 (a :26.4 third quarter).
Warrawee Needy, now trained by Mark Ford, had another :26.4 in him to hold command to the wire, while the Nifty Norman-conditioned Razzle Dazzle narrowed in to 1-1/2 lengths at the finish, having paced his own back half in :53 and last quarter in :26 in the very definition of showing his Real Desire in a “useful tightener.”
Both should give good accounts of themselves in the upcoming Breeders Crown action.
The Queen of the Pacers and No. 3 in the North American ratings, I Luv The Nitelife defeated her qualifying field by four lengths for driver Andrew McCarthy and trainer Chris Ryder in 1:52.2. The daughter of Rocknroll Hanover, already a winner of the Lynch final and the Valley Forge over this track in 2013, signaled her sharpness with a back half of :55.4 and the last two furlongs in :27.2.
Perhaps the most impressive mile of the day, when measured to divisional standards, was the 1:55.1 victory by the freshman trotting gelding Don Dorado for driver Mike Simons and trainer Robert Baggitt, Jr. Owned by amateur driving star Kelly Walker, Don Dorado came within a fifth of a second of the world record for age/gait/sex/track size, held by Correctamundo.
Don Dorado recently won his championship in Pennsylvania Sire Stakes competition -- and it’s been a big seven days for sire Donato Hanover. Last Thursday Don Dorado's PaSS champion filly counterpart, Designed To Be, led a 1-2-4-5 Donato Hanover finish while trotting in 1:52.2, fastest clocking ever for a freshman over a mile track regardless of sex, in a division of the Bluegrass.
Smilin Eli, still in the sophomore trotting colt picture, took the shortest way home to win his qualifier in 1:53.3–:56.1–:27.3 for trainer David M. Smith and driver Pavia, while the fast-but-fractious 2-year-old sidewheeling miss Rockincam Park was untroubled on the lead in a 1:54 showing for driver Howard Parker and trainer Ron Coyne, Jr.