CUMBERLAND, ME – Australian expat Hespoisedtopounce A (The pleasure of bettors) claimed victory and a new track record at First Tracks Cumberland on Friday, June 17, beating some of the best harness racing pacemakers in the field as part of the $6,500 Open II Pace.
Scoring from post five, driver Kevin Switzer Jr. sent Hespoisedtopounce A charging up front and took command with a two-length margin by the time the 28 seconds of the first quarter flashed. Moving on at halftime, Switzer braked and enjoyed a brief respite in 57.3 as the outside flow began to add pressure. Nagle (Dan Deslandes) flushed the cover off Airspinder (Drew Campell forcing Switzer to drop a notch on Hespoisedtopounce A as the field moved towards the five-eighth post.
With the challengers stacked by three at the back, the leader clocked the three-quarter clock in 1:25.1, and it was clear no one was backing down. Only Nagle (Deslandes) could resist the blistering pace as Switzer held Hespoisedtopounce A to his ‘A’ game and held a half-length lead over his closest rival on the wire.
The winning time of 1:54.2 was the fastest mile ever at Cumberland for a 5+ gelding, erasing a mark shared with three horses, one of which was Rocksapatriot (who finished third).
Hespoisedtopounce A is trained by Jimmy Nickerson for owners Anthony Gruppo and Tim Bojarski. The six-year-old paid $9.40 to win.
IT IS POSSIBLE TO OPEN A REPLAY
Driver Kevin Switzer Jr. had two wins in the regular program and also led two winners in the early Learn and Earn no-bet races. Walter Case Jr. won the other two events. All four winners were coached by Marc Tardif and owned by Leighton Property (Lesley and Victoria Leighton).
Cumberland is hosting its next round of baby races on Friday, June 24, with the first post at 2 p.m.
Racing resumes Saturday, June 18, the card includes 11 races and the return of the Maine Amateur Driving Club sponsored by Blue Seal Feeds, as well as a $6,000 Open II Trot with three horses all coming out of winning efforts.
In two weeks, First Tracks Cumberland will host Family Fun and Value Day at the iconic southern Maine oval. On Saturday, July 2, fans can enjoy a meet and greet with their favorite harness riders, food and drink specials, and our first ever Cumberland Derby where fans can enter to win $500 in cash prizes in based on their choices and the official order of finish in the designated race. Gifts and a great day of harness racing will also be offered.
The final run on Friday and Saturday will feature our 20 cent Hi-Five (Pentafecta), with a low 16% drawdown.
More information can be found on our website here and on our Facebook page: First Tracks Cumberland.
For full race results, Click here.
by Chris Tully, for First Tracks Cumberland