El Rey Reigns In Governor’s Cup

Sunday, November 27, 2022

Tony Alagna pupil El Rey burst onto the scene last week with a second-place finish in the Governor’s Cup elimination and affirmed his kingship with a catapulting move over his peers to take the $430,000 Governor’s Cup final, a race for 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings, on Saturday night (Nov. 26) at the Meadowlands.

Combustion powered to the lead through a :26.3 first quarter to pocket fellow elimination winner Stormalong to the backstretch. Ammo then shot from fourth and grabbed the lead before a :54 half. The tempo remained steady to three-quarters as Ammo rolled by the pole in 1:21.4 with Combustion looming from the pocket and Cant Stop Lou in behind.

Ammo remained resolute towards the pylons while facing Combustion’s challenge to the eighth pole. Combustion ground enough into Ammo to take a narrow lead in the lane while driver Scott Zeron emerged from the backfield with El Rey. Revved and ready to roll, El Rey soared over his competitors to defeat Combustion by a neck in a 1:49.2 mile. Ammo settled for third and Cant Stop Lou took fourth.

“The pace was really hot up front, and my horse just has an amazing explosive burst down the lane,” Scott Zeron said after the race. “I knew, middle of the last turn, he was still really on the bit and ready to get at it, and that’s when I was most confident.”

“We were waiting for the light to go on, and he did that a couple starts ago. Since then, Tony’s got him on the right path and we’re excited,” said co-owner Steve Head of El Rey, who was entered and then pulled from the Harrisburg Mixed Sale earlier in November. “We knew he had a lot of talent, a lot of speed early. But he had to put it all together, and Tony and the team got it.”

El Rey has now won five races from 12 starts and deposited to an account worth $284,400. Brittany Farms LLC and El Rey Racing own the son of Captaintreacherou,s who paid $5.20 to win.

A LITTLE MORE: Dexter Dunn, bidding for fourth straight Dan Patch Driver of the Year Award, might have locked up that honor by winning three (Mares Trot, Open Trot and Open Pace) of the TVG Championships. Niki Hill was second in the Mares Pace, preventing Dunn from sweeping all four events. He finished the night with a driver-colony best four victories. … Ake Svanstedt and Jenn Bongiorno both recorded training doubles. … With pool guarantees upped 50 percent to $75,000, both 50-cent Pick-4s were popular with players. The Early P4 took in $135,276 worth of action, while $106,591 was bet on the late P4. … The 10th race, featuring Bulldog Hanover, took the most action of the night when $403,979 was pushed through the windows. … All-source handle totaled $3,398,962 on the 14-race card. … Racing resumes Thursday – the final Thursday on the 2022 Big M calendar – at 6:20 p.m.

Attached (courtesy Lisa Photo): El Rey and driver Scott Zeron vaulted off third-over cover to stick a neck in front of Combustion in the final strides of the Governor’s Cup, for 2-year-old male pacers, on Saturday at the Meadowlands.