Friday, May 20, 2011

Blueridge Betty Pulls Off Upset in Thursday Night Feature

Blueridge Betty closed with a rush to win Thursday night's $10,000 featured ninth race at Vernon Downs.

With trainer Joe Nassimos at the controls for the Big Sky Ranch, Blueridge Betty ($28.00) idled in or near last place through approximately three quarters of Thursday's Open contest for female pacers.

Hemmed in fourth entering the stretch drive, the slick-striding 5-year-old mare exploited a late opening in the inside pylon path, zipped through (last quarter in :28.2 on a sloppy track) and came up with her second win at the meet, plus a fresh 1:53.4 record.

While defeating the favorite Semjac Legacy by a 1/2 length, the bay daughter of Modern Art-Miss Megan E raised her career summary to nine victories and earnings of nearly $74,000.

The pacer By All Means (Truman Gale driving for owner/trainer Robert C. Gale) and trotter Cello Hanover (Frank Milby teaming for trainer Tracy Brainard and owner Donald E. Brainard) became the third and fourth horses at the 13-night meet to become three-time winners with their Thursday tallies in 1:55.1 and 1:58.4, respectively.

Frank Davis and Fern Paquet, Jr. each posted driving doubles during Thursday's 12-race program.

DOWNS DOINGS - Truman Gale became the meet's initial four-time winning provisional reinsman following his first-place finish behind By All Means in Thursday's fifth contest... The meet's other three-time winning equines are the pacer P L Comestowin and trotter The Kentuckian... There will be no live racing at the Downs next Thursday (May 26) due to a Memorial Day matinee at 1:15 on May 30. Thursday programs will resume on June 2... Vernon will offer 12-race cards at 7:05 p.m. tomorrow (May 20) and Saturday (May 21). Saturday's slate includes the week's $10,000 Open pace and five elimination divisions for the $500,000 Empire Breeders Classic sophomore trot, which will conclude on Monday, May 30... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season and its casino can be obtained at, and on Facebook.