Miller Is Hot At The Meadowlands

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Marcus Miller was on fire at the Meadowlands on June 29, driving five winners on the 14-race card.

Miller began his big night in the second race by guiding 4-5 favorite All It Takes to a 1:52 score in a non-winners of $3,500 for pacers.

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He then reeled off three straight wins, beginning in race seven. First was Rocks Noble Artist as the 5-2 second choice in 1:52.1 in a TrackMaster rating Dash for the “G” Notes Final pace, followed by 7-2 third choice Sams A Champ A in a non-winners of $6,000 pace in 1:50, and then 6-5 favorite Music Is Art in a non-winners of $9,000 on the pace, also in 1:50.

Miller capped his big night in race 13 by scoring with Daylyn Horizon as the 5-2 second choice in a $7,500 up to $10,000 claiming handicap for pacers in 1:52.3.

The 30-year-old pilot came close to having a half-dozen winners, but lost race 10 by the smallest of margins, missing by a nose with the classy Sweet Rock in a non-winners of $17,500 pace to Ideal Feeling, who just held on in 1:49.

Miller now has 36 winners at the meeting, good for sixth in the Meadowlands’ driver standings.

On June 28 Caviart Ally, Always A Prince and The Downtown Bus all established lifetime bests while Always A Prince went one step further, going a Meadowlands’ season’s-fastest 1:47.3 at the Big M.

Caviart Ally equaled her lifetime-best of 1:48.3 in the final leg of the Rainbow Blue Series for mare pacers and was even faster a week later, stopping the clock in 1:48 in the series' final. The 5-year-old daughter of Bettor’s Delight-Allamerican Cool stayed perfect in four Meadowlands starts this year by clearing to the lead before the half, hitting three-quarters in 1:22.2, then exploding home in :25.3 to seal the deal for driver Andy McCarthy. Apple Bottom Jeans completed the $4.20 Exacta, finishing 2 lengths behind the winner. Bettor’s Up was third.

The Brett Pelling-trained Caviart Ally returned $2.40 to win, and now has 20 victories in 61 starts, good for earnings of just a hair under $1.3 million.

“She was great tonight,” said McCarthy. “I think Brett has got her spot-on at the moment. She was very straight and focused on her job. I’m extremely happy and excited going forward.”

In the first of two divisions of the fourth and final leg of the Graduate Series for 4-year-olds on the pace, Always A Prince went first-over for most of the final half-mile, grabbed the lead at the head of the stretch and held off the late-rallying 4-5 favorite Jimmy Freight — who was raging along the inside — by a head. American History, who was towed into contention by the eventual winner, settled for third.

Always A Prince, who returned $9.40 as the second choice in the wagering, is a son of Always A Virgin-Glorious Princess who was driven by Dave Miller. The Tyler George trainee now has 21 wins from just 29 lifetime starts and has banked almost $550,000.

“Not at all,” said Miller if he was surprised at how good his horse was. “I knew what he was capable of. He raced great and went a big mile.”

The Downtown Bus sat a three-hole trip to score in the other Graduate division in 1:48. Shadow Cat cut out sizzling fractions of :25.4, :54.1 and 1:21.3 but stopped in the stretch, allowing the pocket-sitting 4-5 favorite Courtly Choice the opportunity to go on to what appeared to be an easy win, but Tim Tetrick put The Downtown Bus right behind Courtly Choice as that one vacated the pocket on the far turn, then ducked to the inside with an eighth of a mile to go before using some explosive pace on the way to an easy 2½-length score. Rock Lights was third.

A son of Mach Three-Slimsplace, The Downtown Bus is trained by Jeffrey Gillis and paid $8.00 as the second choice in the betting. He now has 15 lifetime wins from 46 starts and earnings of $414,505.

“On the middle of the last turn my horse felt great,” said Tetrick. “’The Bus’ is just a cool little horse.”

After The Downtown Bus hit the wire, the Meadowlands became the first track in the sport this year to have three miles of 1:48 or faster on a single race card.

The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono: Hannelore Hanover Wins 44th

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. — Hannelore Hanover, the 2017 Horse of the Year, got career victory No. 44 on June 29 at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono when she powered to a 1:52.2 win over a track labeled “good” in a $75,000 leg of the Great Northeast Open Series for trotters.

Rich And Miserable was second and Tight Lines was third.

Rich And Miserable, who entered the contest with a six-race win streak, took the lead on the first turn but driver Yannick Gingras pointed Hannelore Hanover to the front after the field reached the opening quarter in :27.2. Hannelore Hanover was on top at the half and unthreatened the rest of the way, besting Rich And Miserable by 1-3/4 lengths at the wire.

A 7-year-old mare, Hannelore Hanover has won two of four races this season and 44 of 75 in her career. The Ron Burke-trained daughter of Swan For All-High Sobriety has earned $2.89 million lifetime. She is owned by Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, Frank Baldachino, and J&T Silva Stables.

Hannelore Hanover, the 2-5 favorite, paid $2.80 to win.

Stephen ‘You’re Never Too’ Oldford Wins Meadows Billings Leg

WASHINGTON, Pa. — Trailing by 4-1/2 lengths and wide at the half, Stephen “You’re Never Too” Oldford and Utopia tracked down the leader in the shadow of the wire and captured Friday’s $10,000 leg of the C.K.G. Billings Amateur Trot at The Meadows.

Alesha “The Hoosier Hotshot” Binkley and Hititoutofthepark vaulted to the front from post 5 and, despite constant pressure, opened a daylight lead turning for home. But Oldford and Utopia gobbled up ground in the lane and downed Binkley by a head in 1:57. Tom “Mayhem” Svrcek (Ubanji) and Michelle “The Belle” Ruvola (Jackie Goldstein) rounded out the superfecta.

Terry Deters trains Utopia, an 8-year-old Mutineer-Brontease gelding who lifted his career bankroll to $238,495, for Oldford Racing LLC.

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