Cotolo’s Harness-Weekend Review, 5-30-11
Trond Smedshammer’s Arch Madness lost the May 29 Elitlopp in Solvalla, Stockholm. He won his elim heat and was the race favorite in the final. Also from the States in the final was Wishing Stone and Lisa America.
“Stone” turned out to be the undoing of “Arch” as the two dueled before Arch settled to sit in second. Resting in the catbird seat and dismissing a charge by second-choice Rapide Lebe, Arch appeared to be in a good stalking position.
But Arch was tired and stalled as another battle took place between Yarrah Boko and “Rapide.” With Stone and Arch put away, Rapide looked home free until a late charge by German trotter Brioni, who has a ton of trot left late and soared home first at 27-1, ahead of Rapide, with Sweden’s Libeccio Grif finishing third. Arch finished sixth, Lisa America was never involved and Stone faded to finish last.
Watch the race, if only to see how aggressively the European drivers perform. Fearless of outside trips and speed duels, these fellas play hardball from start to finish and although they are less tactical than our guys, they deserve a great deal of respect for their explosive courage.
Are we wrong about Shadyshark Hanover, who we feel will have a better season as a glamour-boy pacer than Big Jim? Since “Jim” won the “Jersey” and “Shadyshark” wound up third (a 99-1 shot nosed him for second), some may think we will change our opinion. However, it is still early to tell if Shadyshark will improve and take care of his nemesis. Both are aimed at the $1-million Meadowlands Pace and big stakes down the road, so don’t give up on Shadyshark just yet. Losing to Jim early may only help his odds for a score against him soon.
Pocono Downs over the weekend there was a world-record dead heat finish as Bettor Sweet and Macraider N won the $60,000 Open in 1:48.4.
The three-quarters split went in a fiery 1:20.4). See photo on left by Racehorsephoto.com.
The night’s racing was extremely fast, especially for a five-eighths track.