Day At The Track

Eash, Miller score Miami Valley 'Grand Slam'

03:26 PM 13 Mar 2016 NZDT
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Astreo's Love E R Rudy
Astreo's Love capture the $20,000 Open Pace
Conrad Photo
E R Rudy pulled off a minor upset
Conrad Photo

The Eash Racing Stable and harness racing driver LeWayne Miller teamed up for a night to remember on Saturday (March 12) at Miami Valley Raceway. Not only did Astreo's Love capture the $20,000 Open Pace for trainer Don Eash and Miller, but E R Rudy copped the $20,000 championship leg of a top conditioned late closing series, stable mate Undertaker triumphed in the $10,000 first leg of the George Williams Memorial late-closer for non-winners of four pari-mutuel races or $30,000 life, and E R Oliver capped off the 'Grand Slam' by winning a $10,000 conditioned race.

Astreo's Love took full advantage of his first inside post position in six weeks and the scratch of his most serious threat (Mykindachip) to score in 1:50.4 over Nitro (Chris Page) and Fancy Creek Elusiv (Kayne Kauffman). It was the fourth win of the year for the six-year-old son of Make My Day, but the first since early February. As the 3-5 favorite, Astreo's Love returned $3.20 to his backers. The winner has now banked $46,680 in seven seasonal starts, all at Miami Valley.

Although he didn't win a preliminary leg of the late-closer, E R Rudy was sent postward as the third choice in the betting and Miller gave his supporters a picture-perfect drive to pull the minor upset in 1:51.4. The five-year-old Art's Chip gelding sat chilly in the pocket throughout as second choice Major Blue Chip (Josh Sutton) cut the fractions and favorite Stonebridge Adam (Chris Page) pressured first-up on the outside. When a seam opened between the two preliminary leg winners, E R Rudy shot through for the impressive 7-2 score.

Undertaker gave the Eash-Miller combo their third triumph when he bested Gunny Wilson (Tyler Smith) and Goodtime Matt (Trace Tetrick) in 1:53.1 to stamp himself as the early favorite in the George Williams Memorial series. The four-year-old Rockin Image gelding now has 22 victories, all but four at Indiana county fairs.

Startin Something (John DeLong) was an upset winner in the other William division, paying $25.00 following his 1:54 tally. Brent Tartar owns the Johnson Hill Jr.-trainee, who topped Artistic Blue (Ken Holliday) and American Paradise (Chris Page).

The icing on the Eash-Miller cake was E R Oliver's victory in a $10,000 conditioned race in 1:53. The five-year-old son of Total Truth surpassed the $100,000 career earnings plateau with the winner's share.

With the four wins, Don Eash climbed from a tie for tenth in the trainer's standings to a tie for fifth place. Miller, who has had much success in his first foray into Ohio, is now tied for ninth in the driver's dash standings with 30 wins and over $300,000 in purse winnings.

Gregg Keidel

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