MEADOW LANDS – The eight horses in this year’s $500,000 Adios Pace for the Orchids got a break and it had nothing to do with Tuesday afternoon’s draw or last Saturday’s elimination races.
No, the talented field of 3-year-old pacers was spared the chore of battling for second place when Captaintreacherous, undefeated in six starts and winner of this month’s Meadowlands Pace in a personal-best of 1:48.1, decided to bypass Saturday’s Adios, which will go off in the 12th race, approximately 4 p.m. Post time for the first race is 12:20 p.m.
Captaintreacherous, the top pacer in 2012, won the $500,000 Max Hempt and the $1 million North America Cup before bettering the field at the Meadowlands Pace.
His six wins this season pushed his career total to $2 million for trainer Tony Alagna and the Captaintreacherous Racing stable.
“We are going to give him about three weeks off, and then qualify probably at Pocono and get him ready for the Battle of the Brandywine,” said part-owner Myron Bell.
The absence of Captaintreacherous leaves the eight-horse field for this year’s Adios wide open. Last year, the field was heavy with top pacers, including favored Sweet Lou from the Burke Stables and A Rocknroll Dance. It was a longshot, Bolt The Duer, at 11-1 odds, that crossed first in a surprising 1:47.4.
Another longshot, Breakin the Law, a Burke horse, took third despite being 25-1 odds.
Tuesday’s draw put another Burke entry, Ultimate Beachboy, with Dave Palone in the sulky, into the No. 2 hole. Lonewolf Currier, which won an elimination race with John Campbell driving, drew the No. 1 hole and is the early 5-2 favorite. He is owned by Francis Azur of Coraopolis.
“I’d like to be more to the middle, but this gives us an opportunity,” said Burke. “There really are no stars in this field like last year. Last year was the best bunch of 3-year-olds, an outstanding group of horses. These horses are on the rise. None of them deserve the title of ‘Great’ yet.”
Ultimate Beachboy, whose sire is Somebeachsomewhere, has four wins in 16 starts and career earnings of $48,750. He was beaten to the finish by Lonewolf Currier in last week’s elimination race.
“We bought him two weeks ago,” Burke said. “We think there is an opportunity for him to make some money. He’s underachieved. His strength is his ability to be good. His weakness is sometimes he’s lazy.”
Burke said there is a different feel to this Adios, especially with such untested horses.
“Last year, there was a lot of pressure because we were favored,” he said. “We had so much hope Sweet Lou could win it. This year, it’s much more fun. So we’re just going to enjoy this race and have a party afterward.”
Sunfire Blue Chip and Yannick Gingras, winner of the other elimination race, will start from the No. 4 hole and is at 8-1 on the early line.
The Adios card includes the Quinton Patterson Adioo Volo for 3-year-old filly pacers, the inaugural Mary Lib Miller for freshman filly pacers and the Gov. David Lawrence for 2-year-old colt and gelding pacers. There also is a $50,000 Adios Consolation.