By Ken Weingartner, USTA — Beach Glass was made the 7-5 morning-line favorite for the $600,000 Meadowlands Pace on July 16 after winning his elimination by 5-1/4 lengths in 1:48.1 on Saturday and drawing post six for next week’s final at the Meadowlands Racetrack.
Market Based, who won Saturday’s second $50,000 elimination at The Big M by a neck over Night Hawk in 1:48.4 at odds of 11-1, drew post four for the final. He was made 5-1 on the morning line for the final, which will feature a field of 10 3-year-old male pacers.
In the first elimination, Beach Glass was part of an early three-horse battle for the front with I Did It Myway and Greatest Ending, with Greatest Ending eventually claiming the lead in a :25.2 opening quarter. I Did It Myway moved to the top on the backstretch but held that spot only briefly before Beach Glass got the lead on his way to a :53.2 half.
Beach Glass, the 3-5 favorite, and driver Yannick Gingras controlled the action from there, hitting three quarters in 1:22 before sprinting home in :26.1 to win by 5-1/4 lengths over Captain Cowboy. I Did It Myway finished third, followed by Early Action and Mad Max Hanover to all advance to the final.
“I didn’t know, but I thought he might be (ready for that type of performance), and I was hoping he was,” trainer Brent MacGrath said. “If you would have told me he would be parked in :25.2 and home in :26.1, I probably wouldn’t have went that stretch, but he’s good. We’re high on him. He’s just a really nice colt that’s green and he got woke up here tonight.
“Once (Gingras) moved him back to the front, I was very comfortable. We wanted to put him in play and give him an opportunity, and he did, and he got the job done. Hopefully it will set up good for next week.”
Beach Glass is a homebred son of Somebeachsomewhere-Im With Her owned by Schooner II Stable. MacGrath and the Schooner partners also campaigned Somebeachsomewhere, who won 20 of 21 career races, with his lone setback being a second-place finish by a neck to Art Official in the 2008 Meadowlands Pace. Somebeachsomewhere passed away in 2018.
“I said to Yannick when he pulled up in the winner’s circle that I’ve been this far before,” MacGrath said with a smile. “We need to finish this off.
“It’s almost surreal. It’s unbelievable that we would get another horse of this caliber, that we would get another horse in the Meadowlands Pace. To have a son of Beach’s last crop, one we bred, Hanover (Shoe Farms) raised him, it’s just unbelievable.”
Beach Glass has won two of four races this year and five of nine in his career, finishing worse than second only once while earning $264,645.
In the second elimination, Market Based led to the opening quarter in :26.4 before Caviart Camden took the top spot in a :54.4 half. Caviart Camden remained there, hitting three quarters in 1:21.4, but Market Based rallied in the stretch and held off favorite Night Hawk by a neck at the line.
Fourever Boy finished third, followed by Caviart Camden and Captainryanmichael.
Dexter Dunn drove the homebred Market Based, a son of Sweet Lou-Economy Terror, for trainer Nancy Takter and owners Chuck Pompey, Edwin Gold, and H And M Taylor Stable.
“I was quite surprised that he left the gate as hard as he did and cleared over as well as he did because that’s been a little bit of an issue with him running into the first turn,” Takter said. “Obviously, on a bigger track he has a little bit more room before he hits the turn, so that definitely benefited him.”
Market Based has won three of seven races this year and seven of 20 lifetime, earning $288,183. In his prior two starts, he went off stride in his Messenger Stakes elimination on June 24 at Yonkers Raceway and returned with a fourth-place finish in a conditioned race at the Meadowlands last week.
“He’s definitely heading in the right direction,” Takter said. “He definitely stepped forward with that (previous) race and hopefully he’ll step forward off this race as well.”
Following is the field for the $600,000 Meadowlands Pace in post order with elimination drivers, trainers, and morning-line odds:
1 – Captain Cowboy – Dexter Dunn – Ake Svanstedt – 8-1
2 – Caviart Camden – Todd McCarthy – Tony Alagna – 12-1
3 – Night Hawk – David Miller – Brian Brown – 4-1
4 – Market Based – Dexter Dunn – Nancy Takter – 5-1
5 – Early Action – Brian Sears – Joe Holloway – 8-1
6 – Beach Glass – Yannick Gingras – Brent MacGrath – 7-5
7 – Fourever Boy – Mike Wilder – Tim Twaddle – 10-1
8 – I Did It Myway – Andrew McCarthy – Tony Alagna – 10-1
9 – Mad Max Hanover – Tim Tetrick – Jake Leamon – 15-1
10 – Captainryanmichael – Brian Sears – Joe Pavia Jr. – 20-1
Eliminations winners drew for posts 1 through 6. Second-place finishers drew for remaining posts 1 through 7. Third-place finishers drew for remaining posts 1 through 8. Fourth-place finishers drew for remaining posts 1 through 9. Fifth-place finishers drew for the remaining two posts.