Big Daddy Woo Woo had the harness racing driver with the right philosophy in the $120,000 Tony Maurello. Dismissed at 23/1, Big Daddy Woo Woo, from Nick Prather's barn, was driven by Ridge Warren. The key was finding early position. Ride Warren left with Big Daddy Woo Woo and was able to duck and be sixth passing a 27.4 opening quarter.
The five year-old Ft Apache Hanover son did. third up with cover approaching the half which came in 55.3, advanced menacingly and swung wide turning for home. Southern Sport, always in the vanguard first over, had taken what looked like a winning lead. Well To Do Guru, the 11/10 public choice, had chosen to go for a ground-saving trip and was looking for room when he took the open stretch.
The chart caller had Well To Do Guru racing sixth and four lengths off the lead. Time was running out and Michael Oosting , hard at work, was waiting for the wire to come to his rescue. Big Daddy Woo Woo and Ridge Warren kept coming.
In the waning yards, the ultra consistent Big Daddy Woo produced that extra to get up. Southern Sport held on for the runner-up berth. Doubletrouble, the Tony Maurello winner last year, came late on the scene to take third. Well To Do Guru got going late and was only beaten three parts of a length in finishing fourth.
The first quarter was traveled in 27.4. Omaha Survivor took the field to the halfway point in 55.3. The three quarters was reached in 1:23.3. Big Daddy Woo Woo paced the mile in 1:51.1. The winning margin was a head. The Tony Maurello victory gave Big Daddy Woo Woo his 13th win in 52 starts. The winner’s share of $53,400 took Big Daddy Woo Woo’s lifetime bankroll to $185,124.
Driver Ridge Warren explained his thinking to Joe Mazzone, the interviewer. “I had to find a good spot. Then I had to find over. It all worked out great for us. I love it in Chicago. I love the racing here. The guys are great,” he exulted.