Monday, November 14, 2011

Go Go Solano Ties All Ages Track Record

Go Go Solano tied the all-time track pacing standard at Vernon Downs with a blistering 1:49.4 performance on a clear, but chilly Saturday evening (Nov. 12).

A 1:51 winner here at age three, Go Go Solano was assigned the outside eight post by racing secretary Scott Warren for Saturday's $10,000 Open contest.

With Greg Merton doing the teaming for trainer Jordan Rubin in race eight, the favorite Go Go Solano ($3.40) battled with Mystical Valentine for the lead past a :27-second opening quarter, took command going to the half (timed in :55.2), drew off past the third split in 1:22.4, and then tossed in a :27-second closing kicker to win by 7-3/4 lengths.

The sizzling showing tied Vernon's 58-year-old pacing standard that was set by My Little Dragon in 2008 and equaled by Stonebridge Wish in 2010.

In addition to dropping his personal best time by 1-1/5 seconds, the fast paced mile tied the track's aged pacing standard that Stonebridge Wish established on June 5th of last year.

It also marked the 16th track record performance of the season at the central New York 7/8ths-mile oval.

In addition to being his first Vernon score of 2011, it was the fifth season's victory and 14th lifetime win for the 5-year-old son of Bettor's Delight-Real Excitement, who is owned by Richard Lombardo and Howard Taylor.

The rapid-striding gelding increased his career earnings to $609,605.

Go Go Solano's effort was one of four first-place finishes during Saturday's 11-race card for driver Merton, who also captured the seventh race with the pacer You Bet Your Glass, the ninth event with the pacer One More Day and the final contest with the pacer Spartacus Jim.

Driver Roman Lopez and trainer Arnie Marks were also credited with doubles during the track's 88th program.

DOWNS DOINGS - Provisional driver Chris McCracken earned his fourth win at the meet following a gate-to-wire effort behind Bill McCracken's trotter Crestwood Katch Me in race six... Only two more live racing programs remain in Vernon's 58th season... The Downs will offer live racing again next Friday and Saturday, ending its 90-card campaign on Nov. 19 with a spectacular fireworks display. First post each evening will be at 6:55... Additional information regarding the track's 2011 season, its casino and newly-renovated hotel can be obtained at, and on Facebook.