Georgies Pockets was never worse than third in seven Grassroots starts last season and the trotting colt has picked right up where he left off, scoring his second straight sophomore Grassroots victory on Tuesday evening at Mohawk Racetrack.
Starting from Post 8 in the third of five $18,000 Grassroots divisions, Jack Moiseyev allowed Georgies Pockets to float away from the gate and was sitting sixth when United Bi reached the opening quarter in :27.3. Heading for the :57.2 Georgies Pockets had stepped to the outside, picking up a wind break from Defi Normand, and had closed to within four lengths of the leaders by the 1:26.4 three-quarters.
Turning for home Moiseyev gave the fan favourite a clear look at the finish line and Georgies Pockets reeled in four colts on his way to a 1:55.4 victory. Chestnut Schofield finished one and one-half lengths back in second, holding off a charging Mission Man.
“He’s not a real big, big horse, but he’s got a beautiful gait on him,” said Moffat, ON resident Moiseyev. “He was a nice little two-year-old last year and he’s come back to be a nice three-year-old.”
Last season Georgies Pockets led the division point standings, scoring three wins and two seconds in regular season action. The Muscle Mass son won his Semifinal, but was bested in the Championship by Muscles For Life. His $52,000 in Ontario Sires Stakes earnings topped all Grassroots competitors.
The colt has made three starts since returning to Moiseyev’s barn in early June, finishing off the board in his June 20 debut and then winning his June 28 Grassroots division at Georgian Downs in a personal best 1:57.3 and Tuesday’s division in another personal best.
“He went south with Bruce and Brooke Nickells and they got him ready. They did a really, really good job getting him ready to go,” noted Moiseyev, who conditions the colt for owner-breeder M T Pockets Stables of Pompano Beach, FL. “They sent him to me, I’m going to say, about two weeks before we raced him.”
With two wins under his belt Georgies Pockets is right back at the top of the Grassroots point standings, sharing top billing with Manofmanyimages, who picked up his second win with a 1:56 effort from Post 10 in the last division. James MacDonald of Guelph, ON piloted the Manofmanymissions son to the win for trainer John Bax of Campbellville, ON and owners Richard Gutnick of Blue Bell, PA, T L P Stable of Kearny, NJ and Joseph Lozito Jr. of Wayne, NJ. Mostinterestingman and P C Foreign Affair completed the top three.
Also emerging victorious at Mohawk was Georgies Pockets’ freshman rival Muscles For Life. The two-year-old Grassroots champion cruised to an impressive seven length victory over JLs Bad Moon Risin and Muscles Bound in a personal best 1:55.1. Father and son duo Gregg and Doug McNair of Guelph handle training and driving duties on the Muscle Mass son for owner Jarold Hawks of Jeddo, MI. The win was the colt’s second of the sophomore campaign and improved on the third-place result he posted in the Grassroots season opener.
Last season Muscles For Life and Georgies Pockets faced off on three occasions, with Muscles For Life prevailing twice and Georgies Pockets once. Moiseyev expects the rivals, who both enjoy an off-the pace trip, will be well-matched again this season.
“He looked good too,” said the horseman of Muscles For Life. “Just depends on how they draw and how the trip goes I guess.”
The other two Grassroots divisions were captured by Golden Son and Gonna Fly.
Golden Son and driver Sylvain Filion kicked off the evening with a front-end effort that saw them hit the wire six lengths ahead of Dynamic Edge and Heineken Seelster in 1:56.1. The Milton resident piloted the Majestic Son gelding to the win for trainer Richard Moreau of Puslinch, ON and owners Gary and Fay Clark of Oriskany Falls, NY.
Golden Son now boasts a record of five wins, one second and three thirds in 10 starts and has recorded victories in his last three starts.
Gonna Fly started his sophomore campaign at the Gold Series level, finishing sixth in his June 27 division. Off that effort trainer Bob McIntosh decided a return to the Grassroots was in order and Gonna Fly responded with a hard fought victory in the second division. The Kadabra son got a neck in front of Rose Run Rudi, trotting under the wire in a personal best 1:56. Manwithamission finished third. Paul MacDonell piloted Gonna Fly to the win for Windsor resident McIntosh and his partner Earl Hill Jr. of Ohsweken, ON.
The three-year-old trotting colts will also make their third Grassroots start at Mohawk Racetrack, facing off on Monday, Aug. 8.
On Thursday, July 13 the three-year-old trotting fillies will arrive at the Campbellville oval for their second Grassroots test. The fillies will battle for Grassroots points in Races 2, 5, 6, 8, and 10, on a program that gets under way at 7:30 pm
(Standardbred Canada and OSS)