There was no catching Abuckabett Hanover down the stretch in tonight’s $176,815 Simcoe Stake for three-year-old pacing colts at Woodbine Mohawk Park as he simply was on his own to win by more than four lengths in 1:49.1.
Lancaster Bomber and Dexter Dunn grabbed control early in the race but was covered up just after the :26.4 opener by Bettor Sun. First up came Highlandbeachsbest who pulled Abuckabett with him by the :54.4 half.
Highlandbeachsbest took over control with immediate pressure from Abuckabett with Andrew McCarthy steering and they had the lead by the 1:22.1 third panel. Down the lane no one could challenge and Abuckabett Hanover won by open lengths in 1:49.1. Pirate Hanover was second followed by Bettor Sun, Armor Seelster and Lancaster Bomber.
“He definitely needed that tonight. He’s had a lot of bad luck. He got taken out in the Meadowlands Pace (interfered with and broke stride) and things haven’t gone right since,” said McCarthy of the Tony Alagna pupil. “I think he knows what his job is. A nice win like that will definitely do him some good.”
As for the colt’s previous bad luck he noted: “It comes down to post position. In the North America Cup (where he finished sixth) I wish I had read that race a little better. I thought there would be a lot more action to the half and it didn’t happen. I guess I should have left. That’s the way it goes and obviously I had an impossible spot. He has been terrific, hopefully he can move forward now.”
As for the trip in the Simcoe: “I’m always just a little cautious with him the first five steps away from the gate. He really behaved himself well, he got away good. I figured I’d follow Louis (Highlandbeachsbest) up there and see what happens. He doesn’t mind first over as long as it’s not too much of a grind. He definitely bravened right up once he got to collar Louis’s horse in the last turn. It was a good trip for him.”
Owned by Crawford Farms, NY, Alagna Racing, NJ, Jablonsky Held Stable and Barbera Wienick Stable, NY, Abuckabett is a son of Betting Line who now is six for 13 on the year for $237,000 earned. Bred by Hanover Shoe Farms he is the fifth foal from $188,805 winner All Tucked Up and sold for $160,000 as a yearling.
Heather MacKay Roberts for Woodbine Communications