Though dismissed by the bettors, 21-1 longshot Pavillon proved best on the track Monday in winning the $150,000 Red Bank Handicap (gr. IIIT) by a neck before a crowd of 17,741 at Monmouth Park.
In the moments after Inexplicable's very explicable win in the Canadian Turf Handicap (gr. IIIT) on Feb. 24, trainer Christophe Clement was once and for all going to explain his secret for getting optimum performances from horses returning from layoffs. "My secret with layoff runners," he began straight-faced, with a crowd of reporters moving in closer to hear his pearl of wisdom, "is to be stabled next to Bill Mott."
Julian Demarco and Richard Disano's North East Bound pressed the early pace set by Johnny Dollar and pulled away through the stretch to win the $150,000 Cliff Hanger Handicap (gr. IIIT) by 2 3/4 lengths Friday night at Meadowlands.
Eleven older horses are entered to run under the lights in the $150,000 Cliff Hanger Handicap (gr. IIIT), Meadowlands' feature race Friday night. Among the entrants for the 1 1/16-mile turf race are 1999 Fort Lauderdale Handicap (gr. IIIT) winner Garbu, 1999 Jersey Derby (gr. IIT) winner Swamp, defending champion Virginia Carnival, and this year's New Hampshire Sweepstakes Handicap (gr. IIIT) winner Inexplicable.
Edward White and Michael Paulson's Hap stalked the leaders in third place through the early going en route to his first career stakes win, a 1 1/4-length victory in Friday's $150,000 Bernard Baruch Handicap (gr. IIT) at Saratoga.
Inexplicable, making his first start in stakes company, rallied through the stretch under jockey Jose Santos to win the $200,000 New Hampshire Sweepstakes (gr. IIIT) by a nose.
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