CAMPBELLVILLE, September 8 – The field is set for the $593,000 Maple Leaf Trot on Saturday, September 16 following Friday’s eliminations at Mohawk Racetrack.
An All-Star group of 15 older trotters were split into two $40,000 eliminations.
For the second consecutive year, Hannelore Hanover will head into the Maple Leaf Trot final off a victory in her elimination, as the Ron Burke trainee was victorious in Friday’s first split.
Driven by Yannick Gingras, Hannelore Hanover got away fifth in the field of seven, while J L Cruze stepped out to post a sharp :26.4 opening-quarter.
Lookslikeachpndale was parked to three-eighths before clearing to the lead, but the lead was brief, as J L Cruze immediately circled back around for driver David Miller at the half in :55.1.
The intense action up front set up well for Hannelore Hanover, as Gingras moved her to the outside entering the far turn and was able to pick up the cover of first-over challenger Homicide Hunter.
J L Cruze reached three-quarters in 1:23.4, but then gave way to the outside challengers. Homicide Hunter got the lead for a moment before ‘Hannelore’ powered by in the final-eighth and pulled ahead for a 2 ¼ lengths victory in 1:52.
Homicide Hunter held second, while J L Cruze was third. Odds On Amethyst and Pasithea Face S rounded out the top-five to advance to the final.
Hannelore Hanover was in a slump by her standards coming into Friday’s contest, as the five-year-old snapped a three-race losing streak with her Maple Leaf Trot elimination score.
“We wanted to take it easy a little bit on her,” said Gingras post-race. “I didn’t care which way I was going to race her, but I didn’t want to torture her. She’s had many tough trips in a row, but tonight it worked out perfect.
“I thought she was very good at Tioga last time, but she hadn’t raced in a little while and it was a World Record mile, so it was nothing to worry too much about, but I think she’s coming back around and she was really sharp tonight.”
Hannelore Hanover is now five for nine this season with $338,486 banked. Her career totals now sit at 31 wins and over $1.8 million earned for owners Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Frank Baldachino and J And T Silva Stables LLC.
Hannelore Hanover, who captured the Armbro Flight for the second consecutive year back in June at Mohawk, is a big fan of the Campbellville oval.
“She’s a big strong mare,” said Gingras. “She likes to stretch her legs and she seems to like this place a lot.”
Hannelore Hanover will be looking for redemption in next week’s final after finishing second in last year’s event. She paid $3.90 to win.
The second elimination featured defending champion Resolve and Trotting Triple Crown winner Marion Marauder, but neither would advance when all was said and done.
Mambo Lindy struck for a 26-1 upset for driver Tim Tetrick and trainer Frank Antonacci.
Windsun Revenge blasted out to the lead and called the shots through the opening three-quarters of the mile. The Jeff Durham trainee posted fractions of :27.1, :55.3 and 1:23.3 for driver Rick Zeron.
Around the final turn, Crazy Wow came first up and was supplying cover for Resolve, but the defending champ couldn’t keep up and dropped back to ultimately finish seventh.
Resolve’s struggles also cost Marion Marauder, who was following him. The four-year-old star was seven lengths from the lead turning for home. There was no rally from Marion Marauder, who finished eighth.
Meanwhile, Mambo Lindy and Tetrick, who got away seventh, saved ground moving up the inside on the turn. Resolve’s struggles allowed Tetrick to slide into the second-over position turning for home.
Mambo Lindy exploded off cover and shot by his rivals to trot home to a 1:52.2 victory. Gural Hanover finished second by a length and a quarter, while Windsun Revenge was third. The top-five was completed by Musical Rhythm and Warrawee Roo.
A six-year-old gelding, Mambo Lindy had been racing exclusively at Plainridge Park prior to stepping up into the Maple Leaf Trot elimination. He is now eight for 11 this season.
“He’s just a really sharp horse,” said Tetrick following the victory. “He thinks he’s still King Kong because he’s been winning every week at Plainridge and you know horses can’t read a program.
“When I tipped him off (Gural Hanover’s) back at the top of the lane, he gave me a really good step and from then on it was just my job not to fall off.”
Owned by Greathorse of Hampden, Massachusetts, Mambo Lindy is now a 22-time winner with $175,260 earned. The clocking of 1:52.2 lowered his career-mark by a full-second.
A $2 win ticket on Mambo Lindy returned $54.50.
The draw for the $593,000 Maple Leaf Trot final took place following the eliminations. By virtue of their victories, Hannelore Hanover and Mambo Lindy’s connections were able to select their post.
The $593,000 Maple Leaf Trot final will take place on Saturday, September 16.
Here is the field for the Maple Leaf Trot.
1. Windsun Revenge
2. Odds On Amethyst
3. Pasithea Face S
4. Mambo Lindy
5. Hannelore Hanover
6. JL Cruze
7. Warrawee Roo
8. Homicide Hunter
9. Musical Rhythm
10. Gural Hanover
AE: Il Sogno Dream