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SOPH FILLIES INVADE DOWNSTATE IN THURDAY'S 168G NYSS MIKE COHEN PACE


The event, remembering the publicity director at the Raceway as well as NBC Sports, goes in triplicate (races 8, 9 and 10).

The ($55,833) opening division is seemingly the lightest, with Line Dancer (Jordan Stratton, post 1) retuning to statebred competition after winning an local overnight two starts ago. The daughter of Art Major, co-owned by Ricky Bucci and Blue Meadow Farm, was a sire-stakes bridesmaid at Monti last month.

Beachin' N Kissin' (Jason Bartlett, post 2), Betterthangraduate (Brett Miller, post 3) and Checkered Past (Jim Morrill Jr., post 5) all have recent overnight wins.

The second ($55,833) Cohen event finds Solitary (Miller, post 2) returning off a closing second in this past Saturday night's (Sept. 1st) $112,904 Lady Maud. The American Ideal miss, though just 1-for-15 this season, has paid her win against the statebreds.

Newsday (Stratton, post 5) owns a local NYSS win (and another "heater" win at Monticello), while Mink Pink (Bartlett, post 3) was the scourge of the Excelsior ranks earlier in the season.

Thursday night's final ($56,833) sire stakes grouping is the marquee matchup, featuring Lady Maud winner Alexis Faith (Morrill Jr., post 4). This daughter of American Ideal won that race (1:53.4) by (barely) extricating herself from the pocket. "Alexis," trained by Casie Coleman for co-owners West Wins Stable, Jim Fielding, J. Robert Darrow and Kevin McKinlay, is 4-for-11 this season ($226,388).

Alexis Faith opposes the red-hot Wisdom Tree (Matt Kakaley, post 1), whose sire stakes resume reads five wins (including one here) and a second in six tries. The daughter of Betterthancheddar, co-owned by Tom Pollack & Jeff Cullipher and trained by Ed Hart, has won nine of her dozen '18 tries overall ($246,435). She's a month out since whipping the Catskills crowd (1:52.4) and owns a 1:49.4 life-best in the $141,200 Nadia Lobell at Hoosier.

There's also a coupled-entry, Ron Burke-trained two-fer in Jewels Forreal (George Brennan, post 2) and Tell Me a Joke (Miller, post 7).

Post time for the dozen-race wagering card is 6:50 PM, however those early (5:30 PM)attendees can watch a good, old-fashioned walkover. Windsun Magnolia (Jim Marohn Jr.) has the oval all to herself in a $6,100 second-level Excelsior event.

Can "Magnolia," Marohn Jr. and track announcer John Hernan handle the pressure? Tune in next week, same bat time, same bat channel.



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