MILTON, September 4, 2021 – Lindy The Great pulled off the mild 7-1 upset in another star-stacked edition of the $546,000 Maple Leaf Trot in 1:51.3 on Saturday night at Woodbine Mohawk Park.
The seven-year-old was sharp off the gate, as James MacDonald guided the son of Crazed over to the rail heading into the first turn. It was 2019 Hambletonian champ Forbidden Trade who took early control of the race, as Beads tracked in second. Trotting titans Atlanta and Manchego sat in fourth and seventh, respectively, after an opening quarter in :27-flat and a half timed in :55.2.
Beads broke stride just before the final turn for home and Manchego soon followed, opening up the door for Forbidden Trade, looking to draw away from to draw from his rivals, and the duo of Atlanta and Lindy The Great, each taking aim at the leader, to take their shots at netting top prize.
It was Lindy The Great who would prevail, besting a stubborn Forbidden Trade by 1 ¼-lengths. Perfetto, who drew in with the scratch of Play Trix On Me, finished third at 141-1, while Hypnotic, at 101-1, was fourth.
MacDonald, in the midst of a career year, was thrilled to see the Julie Miller trainee back in the winner’s circle after a pair of runner-up efforts and a trio of third-place performances in his past five starts ahead of the Maple Leaf Trot.
“I don’t even know what to say. It’s just been an incredible year. Tonight, I thought I had a good shot. I needed a perfect trip and I needed everything to go right, but he’s just such a good horse and he’s just missed so many times this year.”
On a picture-perfect night at Woodbine Mohawk, Lindy The Great was finally able to strike gold.
“I know what I was telling myself, ‘Just take your time. Don’t step on the wheel.’ He felt like he was just going to erupt when I moved him. I got a pretty clean trip. I was loaded with trot. No one was coming on the outside and I got to take my time. I knew Bob (driver, McClure, in rein to Forbidden Trade) had a good lead, but I was so full. Halfway down the lane I said, ‘Well, maybe he isn’t getting there,’ but he dug in and found some more and that’s what champions do.”
Multiple stakes winner Atlanta, who took last year’s edition, finished fifth, while Manchego, chasing the 40th win in her illustrious career, was seventh.
Lindy The Great, owned by Andy Miller Stable Inc., John Schmucker, John Mehlenbacher, and VIP Internet Stable Inc., notched his fourth win from 11 starts in 2021 and 19th career victory.
With the Trot triumph, the bay, bred by K R Breeding LLC, now has lifetime earnings in excess of $1.5 million. He paid $17.80 for the win.
Nick Ritchie of the Toronto Maple Leafs made the presentation to the winning connections.
– Chris Lomon for Woodbine Communications