Donk Eyes Longer Distances For Geno After NYSSS Great White Way Win

Mendham Racing Stable’s New York homebred Geno made a successful dirt debut in Saturday’s seven-furlong $500,000 NYSSS Great White Way for eligible state-sired juveniles at Aqueduct Racetrack in Ozone Park, N.Y.

Trainer David Donk said Geno will eye a return to state-bred stakes company in the $100,000 Gander on February 12 at the Big A.

“He cooled out really well, it was a pretty easy race on him,” Donk said. “He’ll stick around. If he was just a grass horse, I would have turned him out for a bit.”

The Big Brown bay made a winning debut in September at Belmont Park in Elmont, N.Y., against fellow New York-breds, followed by two starts against open stakes company, including a close second in the November 5 Awad.

Donk said he would like to see Geno stretch out in distance in the one-mile Gander.

“I’m not going to shorten him up. I’d rather go longer than shorter,” Donk said. “He’ll get a little spacing and we’ll go from there. We’ll see how he runs there, I could always come back on the dirt or back to the grass in April. It will give me a lot of options.

“I debated first time out whether I should run him on dirt or turf,” Donk added. “He’s a very good workhorse and he breezed very well on dirt going into this race. It was a big effort.”

Donk trained Geno’s dam Weekend Hottie, a Sun King mare, through her last eight of 27 career starts, all of which were on grass.

“She was an average mare, but this is a pretty good-looking horse. He’s big and scopey,” Donk said.

Bred in New York by Pete Martine [Mendham Racing Stable], Geno brought his lifetime earnings up to $337,250 following Saturday’s winning effort, which garnered a 61 Beyer Speed Figure.

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Donk said Joseph Bucci’s Shesawildjoker, winner of the Shesastonecoldfox at Finger Lakes Race Track in Farmington, N.Y., two starts back, will target the $100,000 Franklin Square on January 15 for 3-year-old New York bred fillies going 6 ½ furlongs. The daughter of first-crop sire Practical Joke was a last-out third in the November 21 Key Cents at the Big A.

Donk said five-time winning turf sprinter Big Package, also a New York bred by Big Brown, is currently turned out at Dr. Patty Hogan’s Hogan Equine in central New Jersey.

The post Donk Eyes Longer Distances For Geno After NYSSS Great White Way Win appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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