Threes Over Deuces Narrow Winner of Dave’s Friend

December 26, 2021

Late Surge Powers Kaylasaurus in $100,000 Willa On the Move

LAUREL, MD – Pocket 3’s Racing’s Threes Over Deuces, narrowly beaten in his previous two starts, came out on the winning end of another close finish by surging between horses approaching the wire and getting his head down first to capture Sunday’s $100,000 Dave’s Friend at Laurel Park.

The 18th running of the Dave’s Friend for 3-year-olds and up and 11th renewal of the Willa On the Move for fillies and mares 3 and up, both sprinting six furlongs, were among six $100,000 stakes on a nine-race Christmastide Day program.

Both races served as the finale in their respective divisions for the 2021 Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred Championship (MATCH) Series.

Threes Over Deuces ($26.60) earned his second career stakes win and first since being promoted to victory over Whereshetoldmetogo in last fall’s New Castle at Delaware Park. The 6-year-old Flat Out gelding, second in the 2020 General George (G3) at Laurel, had gone winless through seven 2021 starts, beaten a neck while third to Whereshetoldmetogo in a New Castle rematch and second by head to Battle Station in a Nov. 14 optional claimer at Laurel.

“It was nice to turn the tables once on Whereshetoldmetogo. Hopefully it’s the start of The Deuce getting back to [being] The Deuce,” Jon Madden, principal owner Pocket 3’s Racing, said. “He’s always fighting. He started the year slow and then started to get right. The last two races we sent him but with the new track we held him back, and it worked out.”

Threes Over Deuces settled off a 22.94-second opening quarter mile run by Newbomb, who maintained a short advantage after a half in 46.26 as a field that included multiple stakes winner Whereshetoldmetogo, Maryland Million Sprint winners Air Token and Karan’s Notion and 14-time career winner Penguin Power began to close in.

Jockey Victor Rosales swung Threes Over Deuces out wide leaving the far turn and set him down for a drive to the wire, where they were able to edge past a stubborn Penguin Power and hold off a late bid on the far outside from Nov. 26 Howard and Sondra Bender Memorial runner-up Youngest of Five, who wound up a nose behind Penguin Power. It was a length back to Air Token in fourth, with 3-2 favorite Whereshetoldmetogo checking in fifth. Grade 3 winner Laki was scratched.

The winning time was 1:10.94 over a fast main track.

“It was the plan to take him back today,” Rosales said. “In the early races the speed wasn’t holding on, so we tried to take him from behind this time.”

Late Surge Powers Kaylasaurus in $100,000 Willa On the Move

Kaylasaurus (Laurel Park Photo)

Bush Racing Stable and Liberty House Racing’s Kaylasaurus, trailing by as many as nine lengths at one point, completed a last-to-first move with an eye-catching rally through the stretch to surge past Princess Kokachin and win the $100,000 Willa On the Move.

It was the first career stakes win for Kaylasaurus ($13), a 5-year-old daughter of multiple Grade 2-winning sprinter Munnings racing first time off the claim for Penn National-based trainer Tim Kreiser. The winning time was 1:11.74 over a fast main track.

“She always makes that big move down the stretch, and Maryland’s known for the quarter pole home is where you make your money,” Kreiser said, “so, we thought this would be the best spot to run her.”

Princess Kokachin, who extended her win streak to five with a front-running triumph over eight-time stakes winner Hello Beautiful in the Nov. 26 Politely at Laurel, broke running and held the advantage again over Hello Beautiful after going the opening quarter-mile in 22.30 seconds and the half in 45.77.

Jockey Xavier Perez and Princess Kokachin were still going easy on the turn as Hello Beautiful, favored at 4-5, was passed to her inside by 25-1 long shot Paisley Singing. Princess Kokachin was comfortably in front and going strong in mid-stretch but was no match for the devastating late run on the far outside from Kaylasaurus.

“We saw the pace was there,” Kreiser said. “[Hello Beautiful] was struggling trying to keep up with [Princess Kokachin], so I was feeling good about the three-eighths pole.”

Kaylasaurus won by 2 ¼ lengths over Princess Kokachin, with Paisley Singing another two lengths back in third. Dontletsweetfoolya and Hello Beautiful completed the order of finish. The winner was claimed for $25,000 out of a 3 ¼-length win going six furlongs Nov. 30 at Penn National and was making her third career stakes try. She finished 10th in the 2018 Gin Talking at Laurel and fourth in the Aug. 23 Dr. Teresa Garofalo Memorial at Parx.

“The race was good for my filly,” winning jockey Horacio Karamanos said. “The speed was going and she’s got a beautiful finish, so I just sit in behind. They were going fast and I tried to be close but not rush her and when she started to move in the middle of the turn, I go little wide to look for the best spot and she give me a beautiful kick at the end. The last sixteenth of a mile, she was just galloping.”

Laurel Park Press Release

Featured Photo: Three Over Deuces (Laurel Park Photo)

@PastTheWire you did do her justice, this is a great read on a tragic moment in the history of our great sport, thank you.

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