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One More Laugh & Fred And Ginger Win Hempt Elims

Published: May 15, 2010 9:39 pm ET

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One More Laugh and Fred And Ginger appear headed for a showdown in next weekend’s Max C. Hempt Stakes for three-year-old pacers after the two heavy favourites picked up elimination wins on Saturday at Pocono Downs. The eliminations each carried a purse of $37,500.

In the first elimination, One More Laugh, leaving from post position No. 5 in a field of seven as the 1-9 favourite, quickly struck to the early lead. Despite the fact that he hadn’t raced in over six months, the gelding, well-rated by driver Tim Tetrick for trainer Ray Schnittker, controlled matters on the front end to win by three parts of a length in 1:51.3. Europan Union finished second while Sharks Legacy got the show.

One More Laugh, sired by McArdle, now owns 10 wins in 13 starts in his career. With the win, his career earnings soared over $613,000. The Pepie North America Cup eligible is the 12-1 fourth choice in Trot Magazine's 2010 Spring Book.

In the second split, it was Fred And Ginger’s turn to dominate on the front end. Fresh off a near-miss second-place finish at The Meadowlands in the Berry’s Creek final, the colt, leaving from the inside post in the seven-horse field as a 1-5 sure shot, was sent for the lead around the first turn by driver Dave Palone and cleared just shy of the 3/8-mile marker. From there on out, the standout from the Ron Burke barn kept everyone at bay to win by 1-1/4 lengths in a career-best 1:50:4. Pang Shui picked up second while Indelible Hanover came home third.

Fred And Ginger, sired by Real Artist, won for the second time in four tries this year and got his fourth career victory. The winner’s share of the purse pushed his career earnings over $157,000. Fred And Ginger is also eligible to the North America Cup and is assessed at odds of 62-1 in Trot's Spring Book.

In addition to the top three finishers in each division, three other horses qualified for the $300,000 final next Saturday at Pocono. Lap Hanover and Philanthropist qualified by finishing fourth in their splits, while Sand Savage earned the last spot in the field by posting the faster fifth-place time of the two divisions.

In other action at Pocono on Saturday, Drop Red won the $24,000 Open Handicap pace and did so in track record-breaking fashion. The four-year-old stallion, driven by Kevin Sizer for trainer Robert Horowitz, paced the mile on the front end in 1:50.1, breaking the previous Pocono mark of 1:50.2 for four-year-old stallions on the pace, which was set in July 2009 by Sailing Cruise.

(With files from Pocono Downs)

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