04/11/2012 4:26PM

Yonkers: See You At Peelers has found her groove again

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Fred Brown
See You At Peelers loves the half-mile track at Yonkers Raceway.

Fans will not see See You At Peelers on Friday night as the Blue Chip Matchmaker series for older female pacers continues at Yonkers Raceway. After opening her season with three wins, the 4-year-old mare will take a week off.

Sidelined last year by a heart ailment, See You At Peelers appears to have returned to the form that saw her win her first 22 lifetime starts. She has now won 25 of 28 career races and earned $1.55 million for trainer Jimmy Takter and owners Christina Takter, John Fielding and Jim Fielding.

See You At Peelers leads the Blue Chip Matchmaker series standings with 212.5 points, followed by Western Silk (200), Chancey Lady (187.5), Anndrovette (187), Rocklamation (175), Fox Valley Sage (162), Ginger And Fred (158) and P Note Blue Chip (155) in the top eight. Mystical Diva (137) and Naughtytiltheend (133) rounded out the top 10 after three rounds.

Horses receive 50 points for a win, 25 points for second, 12 points for third, eight points for fourth and five points for fifth. They also get 25 points for each start in the series.

There are two remaining preliminary rounds followed by the final on April 28.

“So far so good,” Takter said about See You At Peelers’ return to action in 2012. “She’s been coming back really good, especially the last two starts. I’m really excited about those two races.

“All winter she felt really sharp. In the last couple starts, she feels like she’s starting to come back to be the girl I used to know.”

See You At Peelers won all 13 of her starts as a 2-year-old, including the Breeders Crown and New York Sire Stakes championship on her way to the Dan Patch Award as the best filly pacer in her age group.

Last season, she won her first nine races – including the Art Rooney Pace against male pacers at Yonkers – before losing to Idyllic in the Nadia Lobell Stakes at The Meadows in late August.

She won her next start, in the New York Sire Stakes, but was placed second because of interference in the stretch, and was scratched from the start after that because of a virus that caused heart and lung issues. After sitting out nearly a month, she won a qualifier at Freehold Raceway and headed to the Breeders Crown at Woodbine Racetrack in Ontario. She finished seventh in her Crown elimination race on Oct. 22 and was turned out for the rest of the year.

With nine wins in 12 starts and $916,611 in purses, See You At Peelers was honored with another Dan Patch Award, this time as best 3-year-old filly pacer.

“She had two months of doing nothing and that’s what she needed,” Takter said. “We tried (medication) prior to going into the Breeders Crown, but rest was what was most needed to stop the inflammation around the heart.

“She’s getting better and better.”

See You At Peelers prepped for the Matchmaker by competing in three qualifiers in the weeks leading up to the series. In her first Matchmaker start, she finished first in a dead heat with Chancey Lady in 1:52 4/5. The following week she won by two lengths in 1:52 2/5 and last week she was victorious by 2-3/4 lengths in 1:52 4/5.

During her career, See You At Peelers is unbeaten in eight starts at Yonkers Raceway.

“Especially with this series, they get a lot of starts right away,” Takter said. “We went three qualifiers and three starts in six weeks in a row. That’s really not my style; I don’t like to race horses like that. This series is demanding because you need to participate in a lot of legs to get eligible for the final. But she loves Yonkers and she loves half-mile racing.

“She’s a very popular horse; people like this horse,” Takter added. “Her first start maybe wasn’t too impressive because she had a dead heat, but the last two starts people started coming up and saying they think she looked as good as she could look. That makes you really feel excited. She’s the kind of horse that the sport needs. People love to see great horses.”

There will be four divisions of the Matchmaker this week. In the opening division, Krispy Apple is the 8-5 morning line favorite. Division two finds Chancey Lady as the 6-5 choice while the third split sees Anndrovette at 6-5 and Ginger And Fred at 8-5. Rocklamation is the 4-5 morning line pick in the final division.