Prohibitive harness racing favorite Handsoffmycookie (Tim Tetrick) never had an anxious moment Saturday night, winning Yonkers Raceway’s $176,484 Lismore Pace for 3-year-old old fillies.
It was scant more than a public workout for last season’s New York Sire Stakes champ. Leaving from post position No. 2 as the 15-cents-on-the-dollar favorite among the quintet (ironically, all New York-breds in this open stake), she quickly found the front.
Secure in the big chair before a comfy 28-second opening quarter, she lined up the lasses, with second-choice JK Fine Art (Jim Morrill Jr.) in behind. From there, a rated :29.3 next station (:57.3 half) afforded “Cookie” even more of an advantage.
As if she needed it. After a 1:25.4 three-quarters, Handoffmycookie widened to 2 3/4 lengths turning for home. She hit the electronic 3 1/4 lengths to the good in 1:53.1. JK Fine Art was a safe second, with Ryder Blue Chip (Jason Bartlett) third, beaten eight lengths. Jamie Sue (Mark MacDonald) and Bettor B Lucky (George Brennan) completed the order of finishers/cashers.
For Handsoffmycookie, a daughter of Art Major owned by JFE Enterprises and trained by Scott DiDomenico, she returned $2.30 for her first win in a couple of seasonal starts (tonight’s runner-up beat her in a sire stakes event last weekend at Vernon). The exacta paid $4.70, and there was no triple wagering.
“Cookie” is 10-for-14 in her career ($671,680), 7-for-7 on half-ovals including 4-for-4 here. “She’s just a an extremely talented filly,” Tetrick–who won this race for a third time–said. “She can go from just pacing to hitting her best stride like that, and that’s what I like about her.
“She was racing from off-the-pace last season, but she’s more mature now and I knew the way the draw shook out, I’d be leaving with her. Once we made the lead, there wasn’t much to it.” “I was glad we drew inside of JK Fine Art,” DiDomenico said. “That was the one I was worried about and she’s good. I’m very happy to have won this race. The owners are local (nearby Elmsford, NY), they love racing here and so does she.”
(Frank Drucker, Yonkers Raceway)