Sunday, June 9, 2013

Leah's Ex and Mackenzie's Bliss take Saturday co-features

Leah's Ex and Jimmy Whittemore win on Saturday

Leah's Ex and Mackenzie's Bliss were co-feature race winners at Vernon Downs on Saturday night.

Leah's Ex was a fast-closing, 1:54.4 first-place finisher for driver Jimmy Whittemore in Saturday's $6,200 seventh session, a conditioned trot.  It was the veteran mare's second Vernon victory, third season's score and 13th win all-time.  The career earner of $105,009 is trained by Angus Mac Donald and owned by Neal Chilson.

One race later, Mackenzie's Bliss secured his second straight score with a 1:51.4 come-from-behind effort that equaled the gritty gelding's lifetime speed mark.  Owner and trainer Chris Lems did the steering as the lifetime winner of $152,605 chalked up his third local tally, fourth score of 2013 and 25 victory overall.

Saturday's swiftest score was a 1:51 sizzler by the Justin Hale-owned pacer Miracle Freeluck in race two.  Lems handled the lines for trainer Lonny Hale.

Whittemore and Lems each recorded doubles during Saturday's 10-race program, as did driver Truman Gale. 

DOWNS DOINGS—Lems, who recorded five first-place finishes during the three-night week, leads in driving doubles at the 20-program meet with eight…Whittemore secured seven scores during the Thursday through Saturday period, while Roman Lopez logged six tallies…Vernon will host the 2013 Empire Breeders Classic championship races for 3-year-old male and female trotters during Sunday's (June 9) 12-race card that will begin at 6:45 p.m.  The talent-rich program also includes nine divisions of the New York State Fair Excelsior Series for sophomore representatives of the diagonal gait, four for fillies and five for colts and geldings…A revised racing and stakes calendar, as well as additional information regarding Vernon Downs, its casino, hotel, racing and promotional events can be obtained at