Saturday, March 30, 2024

Dave Miller might be the leading driver at The Meadowlands, but Todd McCarthy was the man during March, and with Miller not racing this weekend, McCarthy locked up being the leading driver during the month after winning four times Friday night at the mile oval.

Heading into the final card of the month Saturday, McCarthy has 21 wins from 96 starts, good for a win percentage of 22. The ‘Hot Toddy’ scored with three favorites and one double-digit winner on the night, and had only 11 starts on the program, with three of the dashes restricted to members of the Meadowlands Amateur Driving Club.

McCarthy began his big night in the third race by guiding the Izzy Estrada-trained The Will To Play (a 4-year-old gelded son of Shadow Play-Lady Willpower) to an easy 1:53.4 score in a TrackMaster Series event for pacers with a rating of 74 or less. The 1-5 favorite returned $2.40 to win.

Win No. 2 came in race five with 1-2 public choice Lettuceriprita A (a 14-year-old gelding by Aces N’ Sevens-Money Bags Rita) in 1:56.2 in a TrackMaster Series dash for pacers with a rating of 71 or less. The Paul Blumenfeld student returned $3 to his backers.

The 31-year-old pilot steered 2-1 chalk Roma Amor (a 4-year-old mare by Lazarus N-Full Explosion) to victory lane in the ninth race for trainer Michael Posner in a TrackMaster Series pace for fillies and mares with a rating of 73.5 or less. She returned $6.20 after completing the mile in a lifetime-best 1:54.2.

McCarthy saved his best for last, scoring in the 14th-race finale with 4-1 third choice Its Rockin Randy (a 6-year-old bay gelding by Always A Virgin-Gypsys Good Girl) in a lifetime-best equaling 1:52.3 for trainer Carl Tirella in a TrackMaster Series mile for pacers with a rating of 74 or less. He returned $10.80 to win.

A LITTLE MORE: Trainer Bryan Quevedo, 20, picked up his first career Meadowlands win with Just A Rocket Man in the second race. … Outside The Fire (a 5-year-old gelded son of Cantab Hall-Light The Flame) won the $16,000 featured conditioned trot as the even-money favorite in 1:53.3 for driver Andy Miller and trainer Anette Lorentzon. … All-source handle totaled $3,445,558 on the 14-race program, giving The Big M 20 nights where handle has exceeded the $3-million mark from 24 cards during the year. … Racing resumes Saturday at 6:20 p.m.

PHOTO: Roma Amor takes the ninth race at The Meadowlands Friday night, one of four winners on the program for driver Todd McCarthy. (Credit: Lisa Photo)