Saturday, May 19, 2012

Scorpion Moon posts fastest trotting mile of season

Scorpion Moon (near) wins Friday's $9,500 Open Trot
The productive veteran Scorpion Moon converted a two-hole trip into the fastest trotting mile of the season during Friday night's $9,500 featured eighth event at Vernon Downs.

Chris Lems did the teaming for owner/trainer Tracy Brainard as Scorpion Moon ($10.80) sat in the cat-bird's spot behind the front-striding favorite Lorenzo Dream until the stretch drive, then spurted to a nose triumph over last week's winner in this Open class, Yankee Manny.  The Saratoga-shipper Lorenzo Dream finished third.

Friday's first-place finish marked the fifth victory in eight current outings and the 84th lifetime triumph for the 11-year-old son of Armbro Scorpion-Angie's Nugget, who raised his career winnings to $904,156.

The 1:54 clocking lowered the track's current standard for representatives of the diagonal gait by two-fifths of a second.

It was one of three tallies during Friday's 12-race card for Lems, currently the track's top dash-winning reinsmen with 20 first-place finishes.  The evening's other multiple winners included drivers Rick Plano (three wins and two training tallies), Truman Gale (two driving wins) Frank Davis (two sulky scores), and Brainard (two training victories).

DOWNS DOINGS—Josh Kinney became the 10-night meet's top provisional pilot with a 1:54 pacing score behind Zinescape in Friday's first event.  It was his second Vernon victory of 2012…Leslie Hale earned his initial provisional driving win behind his pacer Filthy Rich in Friday's 11th event…Lems's triple was his fifth of the current local campaign…The pacer Dynamic Rayzer (1:53.3) and trotter Ulay Bono (1:55.4) became the meet's 10th and 11th two-time winners, respectively, as a result of their repeat Friday victories…Vernon will simulcast the 137th Preakness Stake at approximately 6:20 tomorrow afternoon, and then present a 13-race live  program, including 10 events for New York-bred 3-year-old filly pacers at 6:55 p.m…Additional information regarding Vernon Downs, its casino, hotel, racing and promotional events can be obtained at