Friday, September 27, 2013

Don't Blame Her wins again, Paquet Wins 5

The quick-striding pacer Don’t Blame Her, and driver Fern Paquet, Jr. shared the spotlight during Thursday night's 11-race program at Vernon Downs.

Don't Blame Her became a two-time winner at Vernon's 69-program meeting with a 1:51.2 victory in the evening's $10,000 Open for female pacers, while Paquet produced five wins during the card.

For the second week in a row, Joe Bongiorno handled the lines behind Don't Blame Her as the 10-year-old mare wired four fast-footed distaff rivals in Thursday's second race, stopping the timer in 1:51.2, a mile that equaled her lifetime speed record.

The impressive mile resulted in the second straight score, fifth this season and 56th all-time for the bay daughter of Village Connection-Never My Fault, who is also registered to Barbara Bongiorno, and trained by Brad Irvine.  It was the 210th start for the career-earner of $780,982.  She had obtained her win-mark at The Meadowlands last season.

Paquet captured the first, third, fourth, fifth and 10th events to tie Rick Plano, Roman Lopez and Chris Lems at one for most wins by any driver during a single program at the track's 60th anniversary meeting. 

Three of Paquet's victories (Mc Thunderstruck, Salome Marvel and Want More) were for owner/trainer John McNeil, III, who chalked up his initial training triple at the Downs this year.

Jimmy Whittemore charted his 13th double at the Downs in 2013 to take an 83-81 lead over Roman Lopez in their battle for second place on this season's dash-winning driving chart.

DOWNS DOINGS—Wanda Polisseni's 3-year-old trotting colt Winnerwind produced his initial pari-mutuel victory after trainer Dan Daley drove the brown son of Credit Winner to a 1:59.1 personal-best mark in Thursday's seventh session…The Downs will present a 12-race card on Friday that will begin at 6:45 p.m…A revised 2013, 88-program racing and stakes calendar, as well as additional information regarding Vernon Downs, its casino, hotel, racing and promotional events can be obtained at