06/20/2013 10:12AM

Pocono: Takter sends out seven hopefuls in major stakes eliminations

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Derick Giwner
Jimmy Takter will start three horses in the Earl Beal and Max Hempt on Saturday at Pocono.

Trainer Jimmy Takter admitted on Wednesday that he was surprised when he saw the entries for Saturday’s Hempt Memorial eliminations at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs.

“I didn’t think that so many horses that raced in the North America Cup would enter the race,” Takter said.

Takter’s Sunfire Blue Chip, a lightly-raced full brother to last year’s sophomore champion Heston Blue Chip, has been trying to gain experience while missing the top colts.

“I’ve been trying to zig and zag with him,” said Takter. “We went to the Rooney (at Yonkers) hoping to avoid the top horses.”

Still, Takter has to face the music on Saturday as not only will North America Cup winner Captaintreacherous be in the line-up, but Sunfire Blue Chip will run head on into Wake Up Peter, a solid third place finisher in the year’s only $1 million contest for three-year-old pacers.

“He got injured training down last year,” said Takter as to why Sunfire Blue Chip was racing into December last year, something rarely seen with a horse of serious stakes potential.

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Sunfire Blue Chip came back pretty early in 2013, qualifying in March. He has shown potential, especially last week when he scored for catch-driver Jim Morrill Jr. in a Hempt prep pacing home in 1:49 2/5, a career best.

“Jimmy got him a perfect trip and he raced well,” said Takter. “At Yonkers he didn’t get around the turns that well.” Still Sunfire Blue Chip did manage a fourth place finish beaten less than two lengths in the Rooney.

Yannick Gingras will guide Sunfire Blue Chip, a 3-1 morning line proposition in the seventh race, one of three elimination races for the $500,000 Hempt Final (June 29). A winner now in 5 of his 10 lifetime starts, Sunfire Blue Chip will have his work cut out even making the final. Wake Up Peter (post 3), Martini Hanover (post 6) and Beach Memories (post 7) are all stakes winners.

Takter also sends out Rockin Amadeus. Last year’s Breeders Crown champion did not qualify for the North America Cup final, leaving his trainer second-guessing the appearance.

“He cut his knee up pretty bad in his stall the night before the race,” said Takter. “With the money they were going for it was a difficult decision, but we probably shouldn’t have raced him (in the eliminations).”

Rockin Amadeus trained back well enough to enter and of Takter’s three pacers in the Hempt (Source Of Pride, race three), Rockin Amadeus is the only one Takter is confident can pace with division leader Captaintreacherous.

Rockin Amadeus drew post eight in by far the most difficult Hempt elimination (race 10) and will meet Vegas Vacation (post one), Captaintreacherous (post four) as well as the improving Some Kinda Beach (post five). Only the top three in each elimination advance to next week’s final.

Takter has also entered three of his better three-year-old trotting colts in the Earl Beal Memorial eliminations on Saturday night. From that group the trainer believes Corky to be his best. Corky drew post three in the $25,000 second elimination, race six on the program. He will be in search of his second straight stakes triumph. Last Sunday he captured the Historic at Tioga Downs for regular driver Dave Miller.

Dontyouforgetit drew the rail for Takter in the first Beal elimination (race two) and the trainer believes the little colt will give it his all. “He’s very determined,” said Takter. Dontyouforgetit will meet the red-hot Celebrity Maserati, the Dexter Cup winner with four wins in five starts this season. Celebrity Maserati landed post three.

Live Entertainment, a half-sister to Takter’s tomboy See You At Peelers, has shown talent this year.

“I had her entered in the race at Yonkers (Lismore) after she won a Pennsylvania Sire Stakes, but she got sick and we had to scratch,” Takter said.

Live Entertainment races in the second James Lynch Memorial elimination (race 5), but may have her work cut out.

“I don’t think she can go with Chris’ filly (Fan Hanover winner I Luv The Nitelife), said Takter of the competition.

Also in the field is last year’s Breeders Crown and divisional champion Somwherovrarainbow.

The 14-race Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs program has a first post of 6:30pm. Also featured on the extensive stakes card are three elimination divisions for the $500,000 Ben Franklin for the sport’s leading older pacers. George Morton Levy series champion Razzle Dazzle returns to action in the eleventh race division of the Franklin and will meet up with a solid field that includes two of last year’s outstanding sophomore pacers, Sweet Lou and Heston Blue Chip.