03/24/2013 12:30PM

Yonkers: Razzle Dazzle outdoes Foiled Again in first leg of Levy series

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Sean Hamrock
Razzle Dazzle, driven by Brian Sears, wins his heat in the George Morton Levy series in 1:53 1/5.

There were some surprises in the opening leg of the George Morton Levy series on Saturday night at Yonkers Raceway.

First on the list was the brilliant performance put in by Razzle Dazzle. The 6-year-old Razzle Dazzle, now under the care of trainer Mark Silva, took control from the sport’s richest active pacer Foiled Again at the quarter pole and never relinquished the lead. With Brian Sears in the bike, Razzle Dazzle, a winner of the 2012 Levy consolation, cruised to a 1:53 1/5 performance as the 2-1 second choice. Foiled Again had the advantage of the pole position but was in the pocket most of the way for regular pilot Yannick Gingras and briefly lost touch with the winner entering the homestretch. Despite the three-quarter length defeat, Foiled Again showed his courage in the stretch battling to the wire in just his first start of 2013.

For Sears, the leading driver at Yonkers, Razzle Dazzle’s victory was one of three $50,000 divisions he captured on the program. Versado got Sears and the Levy started this season with a dominant performance that required him to be out a long part of the opening half. Once in front, the Nick Surick-trained Versado had no trouble at all winning for the sixth time this season as the 1-2 favorite.

Sears came from off the pace with Code Word ($8.70) scoring easily in a 1:55 mile, the slowest of the six Levy divisions contested. The race was in fact hotly contested with last year’s Levy final winner Atochia getting parked two turns before securing the lead and then being forced to deal with menacing pressure from Sea Venture. The hot action set it up for closers with 35-1 shot E Z Noah earning the place spot. Atochia, making his first start of the season, was a well-beaten sixth.

Gingras has been a fixture at Yonkers during the Levy series and he brought his “A” game on Saturday with two victories. Something For Doc was the fastest Levy winner, pacing his mile in 1:52 4/5 after crawling to the half in a pedestrian 58 seconds. Annieswesterncard gave Gingras and trainer Ron Burke a Levy double, holding off a pesky Dancin Yankee by a neck in a 1:53 1/5 effort.

The longest shot of the night in the Levy came when Nob Hill High got the best of a blanket finish for driver Eric Goodell, worth a $21 payoff for a $2 win ticket. Nob Hill High, a winner of a leg of the series last year and fourth in the final, was uncovered from fifth at the half and just never ran out of gas putting away 3-5 favorite Clear Vision in the stretch and holding off a slew of closers, including runner-up Forever Just. Bruce Saunders trains Nob Hill High.

The Levy continues second round action on Saturday.