Monticello, NY --- Perhaps one shouldn’t expect the weather to be too nice on Halloween Day (Oct. 31) and Mother Nature made sure that it wasn’t at Monticello Raceway and the surrounding area.
Although the day started gloomy, by the middle of the race card the weather turned was downright nasty. Nevertheless, to paraphrase a Post Office motto, neither rain, nor snow, nor gloom of day could keep Bob Davis from winning the second leg of the NAADA Trotting Series with Bullseye Valley in a time of 2:02.4 over the muddy race course.
On a day where track photographer Geri Schwarz went out of her way to decorate the winner’s circle with seasonal decor, the weather didn’t cooperate. Still, she exercised her plan to give each winning driver on the Halloween Day card a bucket of assorted candies, which she alone paid for.
|Geri Schwarz photo|
|Bob Davis and Bullseye Valley rallied to a neck victory in the NAADA Trot.|
And with his driving victory Bob Davis was no exception. He got his Halloween treats also.
At the start of the NAADA Trot, last week’s winner, Impressive Earl, had the pole position and driver Dr. John Kokinos gunned him to the lead as the winds swirled and the rains fell. They passed the first two furlongs in :29.4 and had a four length lead on Bullseye Valley who secured the two hole behind the leader.
Visibility was waning as the field moved toward the halfway point in 1:01.3. Paul Minore was the first to move with Wygant Prince and they were out and challenging for the lead as they raced up alongside Impressive Earl. But Kokinos’ trotter rebuffed the challenge and Impressive Earl had nearly a two length lead at the three-quarters in 1:31.1 as Bullseye Valley wallowed back in fourth position, five lengths off the leader.
Although he had the front-end off the final turn, Impressive Earl’s lead began to vanish by mid-stretch as Wygant Prince rallied and appeared to be a winner, that is, until Davis and Bullseye Valley came out of the fog with a rush to score a head victory in a 2:02.4 clocking.
“It was tough going out there and I laid back off the lead up the backstretch trying to see through the flying mud. We were still back as they headed for home and when we found room in the stretch all I did was aim him and he did the rest,” Davis said about Bullseye Valley.
There were others besides Davis who were happy with Bullseye Valley’s victory. Those who wagered on him most certainly were when Bullseye Valley, a 34-1 shot, paid $70.00 for win. The trotter is owned by Bob Davia, Terry Vanvalkenburgh and John De Gregory and trained by Vernon Beachy.
The three track NAADA Trotting Series continues at Yonkers Raceway on Thursday (Nov. 7).