Pertty Music and Ed Hensley returned to their winning ways at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino as they captured the featured event, a $21,000 Invitational Pace for fillies and mares, on Friday, March 27.
Using a powerful rally late in the lane, the five-year-old mare bested her rivals with a final time of 1:54.2 to reach the winner’s circle in front of a packed house that turned out for the opening night of the harness racing season.
Leaving from post five in the field of eight, Pertty Music was unhurried from the gate and settled along the rail in sixth as the rest of the field battled for early position. Tyler Smith had The Bomb Dottie forwardly placed and they were the first to get a call through the opening panel in :27.2.
The pace slowed just a touch as Hensley gave Pertty Music the green light and the duo reached the top spot at the half-mile mark in :57.4. Their lead would be short-lived as Peter Wrenn and Miss Millie were out and firing approaching the final turn with the rest of the field closing in.
With a three-quarter clocking in 1:26.3, the field was tightly packed and the race appeared to be wide open turning for home. Using a :27.2 final panel, Pertty Music exploded from the pocket and was able to hold off a late charge from Blissful Romance and Ricky Macomber Jr. to score the win. American Girl and Sam Widger overcame a tough, first over trip to round out the trifecta as the heavy betting favourite.
Pertty Music returned $7.00 to her backers at the windows.
“I was a little unsure how the trip would work out for us,” owner, trainer and driver Ed Hensley noted after the victory. “She’s a great mare to drive and the trip ended up working out in our favour. I wasn’t sure if we were going to hold them off down the lane, but she fought all the way to the wire.”
The five-year-old daughter of Jeremes Jet-My Metallica notched her fourth win from just eight seasonal outings. With the victory, Pertty Music pushed her seasonal earnings to $35,235.
Live harness racing will return to Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Saturday, March 28 with a 14-race card that is set to begin at 5:15 p.m. This Saturday night at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will feature drink specials, giveaways and live music at the conclusion of the live racing card.