Day At The Track

METRO PACE NOTES

11:27 PM 15 Sep 2005 NZST
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Here are a couple of things that did NOT happen in the Metro eliminations:

NO...

1. NO Luc (Ouellette), (Ron) Pierce or (Chris) Christoforou graduated from the elims.

2. NO first crop sires are in the final. That is significant – EACH of the last two years, the Metro was won by a first crop sire (2003-Camelot Hall-Blissful Hall, 2004-Rocknroll Hanover-Western Ideal).

3;. NO freshman ever went under 1.50 in a race-until last year's Metro (1:49.4-Rocknroll Hanover).

4. NO race – other than the Metro – has gone for seven figures since the 1990 Wilson ($1.043 million) for 2-Year-Old pacers.

5. NO appearance in the final from the leading money-winner in North America among 2-Year-Old pacers – George Teagues' Western Ace.

CTION NUKE

Homebred...20th crop of No Nukes 2-Year-Olds...No Nukes passed away this spring as the third richest sire in the sports history at the time behind only Abercrombie and Albatross

The four FASTEST No Nukes' credits of all time all occurred AFTER he passed away, thanks to Dr No…Three generations are represented in this race: No Nukes, his son Western Hanover and HIS son, The Panderosa, ALL have sons in the Metro final...

John Campbell was the only driver to qualify two – if he chooses Action Nuke, he'll be looking to add to his all-time Metro best of four wins. John drove two of the early stars of No Nukes: his first ‘millionairess’ Nadia Lobell and his New Jersey Classic/Pace-winning Dexter Nukes...Trainer Bill Elliott is having a breakout season...John Campbell was on the board in seven of his first nine Metro drives.

WESTERN SEARCH

Driver Brian Sears is looking to become the second driver to win this back to back – John Campbell did it in 1999 and 2000 with The Firepan and Pro Bono Best...

Owner Richard Julich is 77. He owned horses in the 1960s, got out of the business in 1972, came back in briefly in the early 1980s, got out AGAIN, then re-emerged the last couple of seasons with Bob Siegelman. Mr. Julich won his first-ever Meadowlands race this year at age 77...

The three biggest wins of Brian Sears’ career have all come with the same horse, Rocknroll Hanover...

Brian Sears is on pace to eclipse John Campbell’s 2001 earnings record of $14.1 million...

Sears is in position on this night to become the eighth driver to surpass $11 million (U.S.) for a season...

Western Hanover has two sons in the final: he won the 1997 Metro with Rustler Hanover, who overcame post eight and interference to do so. Rustler and Rocknroll Hanover are the only BROTHERS to win the Metro...

Bob Siegelmans' two best horses prior? Haunted House, a 1994 Meadowlands Pace finalist and Cheyenne Rei, who owns a Matron (2002) win over BOTH Art Major and McArdle

(Remember that on Thanksgiving day of 2000, Bob Siegelman had almost his entire barn wiped out by fire).

IMPECCABLE

Some of the same connections as Dr No, the four-time winner this year in 1.49 or better –ONLY Western Ideal did it five times in a season...

Randy Waples was ninth in his first Metro drive (1997) with Memphis Flash. Waples has the fewest drives of ANY this year in the Top 30 in purse earnings.

SPOKESMAN

Camluck sired 2002 Metro winner Sir Luck...

Steve Condren was runner-up in EACH of his first two Metro drives (1988, Trilla Town and 1989, Armbro Income)...

2004 was the first year – EVER – that there were more $500,000 and up races in Canada (13) than the U.S. (11)…

Steve Condren’s biggest career win came in the 1989 North America Cup with Goalie Jeff, who despite paying over $90, would go on to be named the 3-Year-Old Pacing Colt of the Year.

FAUST BLUE CHIP

His sire, Artsplace, is the last sire to win this race back-to-back (1998, Grinfromeartoear, and 1999, The Firepan)...

Gregg McNair is one of three trainers who is in BOTH the Metro and the She's A Great Lady final (Mark Capone and Erv Miller are the others)...

One of two maidens in the final: in 2003, Camelot Hall was a maiden when he won; in 1995, runner-up Pacific Fella was still a maiden, and he would wind up later winning the Graduate, the Haughton, and became the sport’s first winner in under 1.49 at two DIFFERENT tracks. He also would later sire the 2003 Horse of the Year No Pan Intended. Mike Saftic debuted in the 1993 Metro and finished third with Louisiana. Sire Artsplace is the ONLY HORSE to ever win the Metro himself (1990) AND sire a Metro winner (1998 & 1999).

PERFECT UNION

Is one of two maidens, but that didn't deter George Brennan and Camelot Hall in 2003 from winning the biggest pot ever for a NON-winner. Perfect Union is a brother to Must See, the ONLY odds-on horse in the five-year history of the She’s A Great Lady, and the outstanding Glowing Report, second two weeks back in the Breeders Crown to Loyal Opposition and the seventh female million-dollar winning daughter of Artsplace, an all-time record...

George Brennan is currently number five in North America in purse earnings – the same spot he held last year (NOTE: For the first time ever – if it holds up – the SAME five guys could wind up in the top five in back-to-back years [Sears-Pierce-Manzi-Miller-Brennan]). George Brennan won the Breeders Crown with Loyal Opposition, snapping a seven-year gap from his last...

This colt had NO purse earnings on his card entering the elims...

George Brennan won with his first-ever Metro drive in 1995 with A Stud Named Sue…Liz Quesnel, the trainer of A Stud Named Sue, is the ONLY female trainer to EVER win TWO half-million dollar races (1995 Wilson, $585,000 and the 1995 Metro, $505,000).

WINSLOW GAMBLER

Erv Miller, one of three trainers in here who is also in the She's A Great Lady (Gregg McNair, Mark Capone)...

Jody Jamieson is sixth in drives in all of North America (will be over 2,400 for the season by Saturday night)...Miller debuted in this year’s Hambletonian with the 3-5 favourite, Classic Photo, and finished second...

Miller just won the Breeders Crown with two-time division title-winner, Loyal Opposition. She became the first horse – EVER – to win their first Breeders Crown AFTER already having captured two division titles (at ages two and four).

SYL HANOVER

Mark Capone trained the two-year-old champion of 2002, All American Native...Mark, Erv Miller and Gregg McNair will all double up in both the Metro and the She's A Great Lady (John Campbell was the only driver to qualify two).

JEREMES JET

His dam, Ohyouprettything, won $1,279,368 (U.S.) lifetime...

Sire Western Hanover is the defending leading sire in all of North America...

In 1999, another undefeated son of Western Hanover came into the final (Richess Hanover, eight-for-eight). He of course is a brother to 1997 winner Rustler Hanover and last year’s winner Rocknroll Hanover...

Paul MacDonell improved in his first four Metro drives, ALL of which yielded him a cheque (1988, Resonator [5th]; 1992, Lotta Soul [4th]; 1995, Pacific Fella [2nd]; 1997, Rustler Hanover [1st]).

Trainer Tom Harmer was DRIVING the pacesetter (a colt by the name of Long Fella) in the 1984 Meadowlands Pace won by On The Road Again. The following year, Tom campaigned Falcon Seelster, who wound up winning on Jug day in a world half-mile track record of 1:51 flat, and who won $1,121,045 in his career.

Falcon Seelster was also second in the sport’s first-ever sub-1:50 race mile (1:49.3 by Nihilator – 8/3/85). THEN, TOM was not done. He won the 1987 Breeders Crown with Pacific, and won over $1 million for owner George Steinbrenner with his Incredible Finale, the sire of Mini Me, the two-time Illinois Horse of the Year.

PALONE RANGER

QUOTE-Chris Ryder:

"He is a gutsy horse. Very determined. He reminds me of McArdle. He always gives you what he's got out there. A beautiful horse. Maybe the best 2-Year-Old I've ever had." Ryder campaigned the Two-Year-Old of the Year in 1997, Sealed N Delivered...

The last TWO Metros, and three of the last six, have gone to a trainer from down under (Darren McCall, Camelot Hall, 2003; Brett Pelling, Rocknroll Hanover, 2004) – Ryder looks to make it three straight with his first $1 million win...

Stablemate Took Hanover “kicked the stall gate and hurt his leg," according to Ryder. "He's likely done for the year"...

If David Miller and Palone Ranger win the 2005 Metro, it'll be the third STRAIGHT year a NON-Canadian born driver has done it (Brian Sears and George Brennan are the last two), but only the fifth time in 18 editions…

Western Ideal is looking to become the ONLY SIRE to ever win the Metro in his first TWO crops...

With a win, Palone Ranger would make it the 39th time in history (since 1989 when Kelvin Harrison did it first) that a down under trainer has captured a race valued at over $500,000. Nineteen of the 38 times it has been done, have occurred since 2003...

David Miller was the 2003 Driver of the Year, and was third last year in the purse earnings standings and the same this season...

Western Ideal set TWO world records in winning BOTH the Metro and the She’s A Great Lady last year in his very first offering (1:51 for Cabrini Hanover and 1:49.4 for Rocknroll Hanover). It was especially significant because BOTH records had been around a while. The 1:49.4 for Rocknroll Hanover was one-fifth of a second better than the 1:50 by Badlands Hanover in 1998 (Breeders Crown Colonial) and Western Shooter (2001 Governors Cup). Three years, BUT the filly mark had stood 14 years (1:51.2, 1990, Miss Easy!!).

In the last 13 months, Western Ideal has sired the winners of the Metro, She's A Great Lady, New Jersey Classic, Adioo Volo, Meadowlands Pace and Confederation Cup, and three of the last four Horses of the Month awards have gone his way as a sire. Ryder had BOTH Art Major and McArdle in his barn AT THE SAME TIME! Miller has one previous million-dollar win – it was the FIRST Breeders Crown race to go for $1 million (in 2000 with Magician).

Courtesy Of Bob Heyden

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