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New foes await Rockeyed Optimist at Big M
Friday, March 11, 2016 - by James Witherite, Meadowlands media relations

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East Rutherford, NJ --- Just last week, Steve Elliott trainee Rockeyed Optimist held off Dovuto Hanover and Take It Back Terry for a 1:50.2 triumph in a $25,000 Open Pace at The Meadowlands. The competition heats up even more for the 5-year-old Rocknroll Hanover gelding this Saturday (March 12), as he'll not only once again face Dovuto Hanover, but stakes-proven Sunfire Blue Chip and Bettor's Edge as well in the weekly feature.

Bettor's Edge, unraced since his 19-1 upset in the $400,000 TVG Free-For-All last November, competes for the Ron Burke stable as the 2-1 morning line favorite. The TVG score is one of 26 career wins for the 7-year-old, and he's amassed more than $1.7 million in career earnings. Joe Bongiorno, who drove him to a third-place finish in the American-National last fall in Illinois, will be at the lines.

From post four will await 19-time winner Sunfire Blue Chip, a career earner of more than $950,000. The 6-year-old entire has been racing in upper-level events at Yonkers of late, finishing first or second in four of his last five outings. Hall of Fame trainer Jimmy Takter calls upon Hall of Fame driver John Campbell to team up with the son of American Ideal.

Rockeyed Optimist, meanwhile, will be reunited with Tim Tetrick, who has returned from Florida after last weekend's Pro-Am event at Pompano Park. So far in 2016, Rockeyed Optimist has amassed two wins and a near miss in three starts, just last week brushing to the fore and holding sway from the late-charging Dovuto Hanover while odds-on. The 17-time winner will start from post seven as the 5-2 morning line second choice.

Punters are reminded that the $30,000 Pick-5 has shifted to begin in race one, while the pair of Pick-4 pools -- guaranteed for $25,000 and $50,000 respectively -- now kick off in races three and seven. Post time for Saturday's 13-race card is 7:15 p.m. (EST).

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