In a pulsating finish, Ok Heavenly, driven by Kevin Wallis, eked out a photo finish win in Pompano Park’s mid-week feature, the $11,000 Open Pace for mares.
The five-year-old daughter of Sportswriter, trained by Angela Coleman for Mark Winship and the Dandy Farms, got up in the final stride to nail the pacesetting Metro Glide, handled by Tom Jackson, by a scant nose in 1:52.2.
Miss Mady, with Ricky Macomber Jr. handling the lines, was third, just a neck off the winner in the three-way thriller. Arodasi was fourth in a field scratched down to this quartet with the scratch of Dreas Good Powow.
At the outset, Miss Mady blasted off the wings into an early lead but yielded to Metro Glide at the opener in :27.4.
Just past that initial marker, Wallis thought about making a quarter-move but, after tilting out, ducked back in and was content to stay in third past the half in :56.
With the pace quickening on the backside, OK Heavenly left her cozy pocket in third and began gnawing forward, but she was unable to really put that much of a dent on the leader as a :27.3 third panel brought Metro Glide past the third station in 1:23.3.
In the lane, OK Heavenly continued to chew away on the leader, with Miss Mady finding her second wind and also gaining with the trio of mares hitting the wire together and the photo finish camera determining the winner.
In a post-race interview, driver Kevin Wallis related, “I was thinking of making a quarter-move to the front but thought better of it as the leader looked pretty intent on the front end of things. On the backside, I thought I’d better get going but I wasn’t too confident when we didn’t gain much during that third quarter.
“She got there, though, but, to tell the truth, I wasn’t sure about it at the wire.”
The win was OK Heavenly’s 14th lifetime and vaulted her over $166,000 in career bounty.
As the 2-5 toteboard favourite, OK Heavenly paid $2.80 to win.
Racing continues on Saturday night with post time set at 7:20 p.m.
(Standardbred Cananda with files from Pompano Park)