Duc Dorleans, smartly handled by Wally Hennessey, captured Pompano Park’s $12,000 Open Pace on Sunday night (December 4), as he stopped the timer 1:50.1.
The six-year-old son of Shanghai Phil scored by one and a quarter lengths over the late-charging Sing For Me George (driven by Kevin Wallis). Rockntouch (Mickey McNichol) finished third, two and a quarter lengths away. Abreathofreshart was fourth while Pop Cop, prominent much of the way, earned the minor award in the septet.
At the outset, Pop Cop – who left from the rail – and Here Come William (Post 5) got into a very heated war early, as Pop Cop refused to yield through an opening quarter of :25.4. At that stage, Duc Dorleans (Post 6) was also on the prowl, but smartly took a seat in third, three lengths off the sizzling pace.
With a half in :53.4, positions remained unchanged, but, on the backside, Hennessey sent Duc Dorleans sprinting forward and to a short lead around the final turn and past the third station in 1:21.3.
In the lane, Duc Dorleans edged past the stubborn Pop Cop, drew clear at mid-stretch, and then held off the five-wide surge of Sing For Me George, who was dead last turning for home.
In the winner’s circle, Hennessey said, “being outside of those two that were in a dog-fight early was a blessing because they opened up some daylight, allowing me to tuck in third.
“Yes, he does like the front end, but I wasn’t about to get into a war that I wasn’t going to be able to win. When I asked him on the backstretch, he responded like the good horse he is. It was a good team effort this time around.”
Trained by Jacques Dupont for Gestion Levesque 2005, Inc. and Les Ecuries Dorleans, Duc Dorleans now boasts $616,270 in career earnings — $66,168 this year.
As the even money proposition on the tote board, Duc Dorleans returned a mutuel of $4.00.
In the $10,000 Open 2 Pace, Whogoesfirst, with Wally Hennessey in the bike, survived some early sizzling fraction on the front end–:26.1, :54.2 and 1:23—to take top honours in 1:51.2, as he held off a late surge along the pylons by Legal Spike (Ricky Macomber, Jr.) to hit the line a half-length to the good. No Bad Dreams (Dave Ingraham) used a menacing brush on the backside during the third quarter—moving from seventh to second—to finish third, a length away.
In the better for the bettor department, one fortunate player cashed in on a 20 cent Pentafecta ticket worth $6,303.92 when amateur driver Billy Muggleston steered B Cor Thomas ($18.80) to upset victory in the second of two events for the Florida Amateur Driving Club. The other amateur event went to Total Freedom with Dein Spriggs in the bike.
Pompano Park’s leading driver, Wally Hennessey, had another huge night, scoring five wins on the 10 race program.
Pompano racing will continue on Monday night. First-race post time will be at 7:20 p.m.
(Standardbred Canada with files from Pompano)