Day At The Track

No more claiming ranks for Kiss Of Terror

09:18 AM 16 Mar 2017 NZDT
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Kiss Of Terror, harness racing
Kiss of Terror and driver Kyle Ater
Conrad photo

At least one thing is certain this week at Miami Valley Raceway: Kiss Of Terror will not get claimed.

Already claimed five times this year, Kiss Of Terror is entered in Saturday's $22,000 Open Handicap at Miami Valley. Kiss Of Terror, a 5-year-old gelding pacer who has won six of nine races this season and earned $54,425, will start from post four with Kyle Ater at the lines for his father, trainer Dan Ater.

Kiss Of Terror was claimed for $30,000 last week by Kirk Nichols and Seth Downing. Kiss Of Terror won that start by 10-1/4 lengths in 1:51. It was his sixth victory in his past seven races.

"He's a real popular guy," Dan Ater said about Kiss Of Terror, who has won 18 of 71 career starts and earned $190,944. "I guess when any horse is winning they are popular. Hopefully we can keep him on that string. It'll be tough at that level, but we'll find out.

"The owners wanted to move him up, which is what we usually do with claimers. We don't play the rent-a-horse game. We try to find something we like and hang on to him a little while. Sometimes that's good and sometimes that's bad, but that's our plan anyway. We'll see what happens."

In January, Kiss Of Terror won a $27,100 Claim to Fame Series championship at Miami Valley. Kiss Of Terror's only setback in his past seven starts came in the Open Handicap on Feb. 25 at Miami Valley. He finished seventh, beaten by 3-1/2 lengths after a first-over trip.

Kiss Of Terror is a son of stallion Western Terror out of the stakes-winning Kissed By A Fool. The dam is a half-sister to millionaire I Am A Fool and was one of nine foals out of I'm No Fool to earn at least $200,000 at the races.

"He likes to win," Ater said. "I like his gameness. He's not a very big horse, but he seems like a nice horse. He just looks like a quality horse and quality horses are hard to find. We'll see how he does. It's all a gamble. You try to take care of them and do the best you can and hope for the best."

Saturday's Open Handicap at Miami Valley also features Night Pro, who is 2-for-2 this year and will start from post nine with Sam Widger driving for trainer/owner Dale Decker. The remainder of the field is Account Rollover, Angelo J Fra, Feelnlikearockstar, My Buddy Ninkster, Swing City, Latest Desire, and My Hero Ron.

"I hope he races good this week and I hope I can keep him racing good," Ater said about Kiss Of Terror. "We try to look for horses for a little longevity, but it's a big task. Nowadays it's a tough game.

"Hopefully for us you don't see him in a $30,000 claimer next week."

by Ken Weingartner, for Harness Racing Communications

 

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