Only two tracks held racing programs on the final night of 2023. Harrah’s Philadelphia held an afternoon card followed by an evening program at Hawthorne. An Indiana sired horse kicked off the card in Philadelphia with a win in claiming action.
Select Friday and Jack Pelling began their event from post four and got away fifth in the $15,000 claiming event. Warrawee Xtreme and Brett Beckwith led the field early through fractions of :27.1 and :56.3 before Select Friday pulled to the outside and came roaring toward the leaders. He crossed over to lead the way and Pelling had a big hold on the gelding through the three-quarters in 1:25.3.
Heading down the lane, Select Friday was still in full control of the field and Pelling was still leaning back to contain the gelding. Don’tmesswithles and Bradley Chisholm closed in from the back but their efforts were too little too late as Select Friday rolled under the wire in 1:54.1, a final quarter in :28.3. Don’tmesswithles finished two and three-quarter lengths back in second followed by Chief of Staff and Tyler Miller for third.
Select Friday paid $14.80 for the win. The five-year-old son of Rockin Image is owned by Cya in the Game Racing and Michael Mitchell, all of New Jersey. Bryson Dunning trains the Indiana sired horse, who was bred by Frontier Farms. The win placed Select Friday over the $100,000 in career earnings. He was unraced at two and his career best time of 1:51.4 was taken earlier this year at Harrah’s Philadelphia.
Later in the card, Pelling drove another Indiana sired horse to a win as DC Anna prevailed in conditioned trotting action. After getting away third, she circled to the lead and never looked back, trotting to the win in 1:54.2. Hammer Creek and Johnathan Ahle finished three and one-quarter lengths back in second over Town Victor and Steve Smith for third.
DC Anna is owned by Triple D Stables and Joseph Faraldo. Scott Di Domenico trains the six-year-old Guccio mare, who was bred by Leroy Kemp. She now has more than $223,000 on her card with a 1:54.2 mark taken earlier this season.