GRANTVILLE, Pa--Bernie Houghton had a good night on Sept. 12 at Penn National, with a first and a second in one race and a first and a third in another.
Houghton is now third Leading Trainer, Money Won, at Penn, and egihth in Races Won, with 28 wins from 164 starts, 30 seconds, 31 thirds and $720,198 in earnings.
HnE Northhaft Horse Racing LLC's California homebred Great Again, ridden by Andrw Wolfsont, won a 2-year-old, $18,100 Maiden Claiming at 5 1/2 furlongs by 8 1/2 lengths over stablemate Nicholas Fazzolari's Life Master Jim.
"I've had Great Again for a while," said Houghton. "He a nice, good-looking horse. He's had a couple of seconds, and he finally got the job done."
Paul F. Spears' Pa-bred Long Tom, also a homebred, won an $11,000 Maiden Claiming race at for 3-year-olds and up at 1 1/16 miles by 1 1/2 lengths over Seabrook Charm, owned and trained by Patricia Lovato, with Melissa Houghton's Messy Baker, trained by Houghton, third,
"Paul bred Long Tom," said Houghton. "I've had him a year. He hadn't run well before. I took a couple of races for him to get going, but finally the light went on."
MICHAEL MATZ saddled DD Matz' Bachelor Bait to win a $44,400 Maiden Special Weight for 2-year-old fillies at 6 furlongs at Laurel on Sept. 14.
Bachelor's Bait is out of the Matz' Sangrita, so she is a half-sister to Tequilita, a multiple stakes winner for the Matzes.
Bachelor's Bait showed speed at the start, was rated off the dueling leaders, ranged up four wide into the stretch and won by 1 3/4 lengths.
Belmont hosts two steeplechase races on Wedneday, Sept. 18 and Thursday, Sept. 19.
The $75,000 William Entenmann Memorial Novice Stakes is the first race at 3 p.m. at Belmont on Wednesday.
Rosbrian Farm's Teodoro, trained by Ricky Hendriks,who won by 33 3//4 lengths at Saratoga on Aug. 28, faces a trio of horses trained by Leading Trainer Jack Fisher, including Hyggelig Haven’s 4-year-old Cracker Factory, who finished 13th in the Cheltenham Festival’s Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle in March before being shipped to the U.S.
Fisher also has Riverdee Stable’s City Dreamer, who won the Iroquois Steeplechase’s Marcellus Frost Champion Hurdle in May and Bruton Street-US’s Snap Decision, a 38½-length winner at Saratoga Race Course in an allowance hurdle on Aug. 14.
In the G1, $150,000 Lonesome Glory Handicap on Thursday, Hudson River Farms' Winston C, trained by Jonathan Sheppard, is the highweight at 160 pounds.
Winston C won both G1 races at Saratoga earlier this summer, the A.P. Smithwich and the Turf Writers, but he, too, faces a strong trio from Fisher.
Bruton Street-US’s Scorpiancer, the 2017 Eclipse winner who won the Lonesome Glory in 2016., skipped the summer’s races after winning the G1 Calvin Houghland Iroquois for a second time in May.
Fisher also will saddle two others, Bruton Street-US’s Moscato, who won the G2 Temple Gwathmey Handicap in April before finishing third in the Iroquois, beaten a length.
Moscato locked up the 2017 novice championship with a victory in Belmont Park’s William Entenmann Memorial Novice Stakes.
Fisher's third is Sonny Via’s Hinterland, who finished third in the Smithwick and fourth in the New York Turf Writers.