McAlvin sets a new stake record time

05:31 AM 14 Aug 2012 NZST
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McAlvin and Eric Ledford
McAlvin and Eric Ledford - smoke home in a record 1:52.3 - last quarter: 28 even.

McAlvin, a $7,500 yearling acquisition, outperformed his harness racing expectations once again Monday (August 12) at The Meadows when he ripped off his third straight Pennsylvania Stallion Series victory in a stake-record 1:52.3.

The $140,000 event for 2-year-old colt and gelding pacers was contested over seven divisions, with Fraternity, Eddie Sweat, Normandy Invasion, Desperation, Momma’s Jolt and Late Night Joke also taking $20,000 splits. Tony Hall piloted three division winners (Eddie Sweat, Late Night Joke, Desperation) while Dave Palone fashioned a stake double (Momma’s Jolt, Normandy Invasion).

McAlvin grabbed the lead with a quarter-pole move for Eric Ledford and cruised home, downing Hefty Lefty by 3-1/4 lengths. Andwin Hanover was third. The time lowered the stake mark of 1:53 set just two races earlier by Fraternity.

“We bought him to be a fairs horse, that’s all,” said Robert Krenitsky, Jr., who trains the McArdle-Grand Style gelding for Julie Krenitsky. “He’s definitely exceeded our expectations.”

McAlvin has only the Stallion Series fourth leg and finals left on his engagement card this year and not many stakes next season, although Krenitsky said he would explore early- and late-closing series for McAlvin’s sophomore campaign.

Fraternity’s stake record was short lived, but he looked sharp erasing a 9-length deficit with an uncovered more for Brett Miller and trainer Steve Elliott, who owns the son of McArdle-Shady Desire with The Fra Stable.

“He likes to be on the outside, and Brett drove him perfectly,” said Elliott assistant Toni Rose. ”I think you’ll be seeing him coming from behind all the time. He doesn’t have quick speed off the gate.”

Broadway Cruiser was second by 3-3/4 lengths, with Dragon Tattoo third. Fraternity now has five consecutive win or place finishes.

Named for a caretaker of Secretariat, Eddie Sweat might not have brought Big Red to mind exactly, but he was impressive nonetheless, moving first up and breaking his maiden in 1:54, 1-3/4 lengths better than Come And Get’em. UF Dragons Cruiser earned show.

A tip from Ron Pierce helped trainer Tim Twaddle correct Eddie Sweat’s breaking problems, which cost him any chance in three straight outings.

“When Ron drove him at Chester, he made a break and came back to finish third,” Twaddle said. “Ron advised us to put a heavier set of hopples on him and take them in a bit. That was the turning point. He’ll be a nice horse next year.”

LsSalle Racing Group owns the son of Allamerican Native-Popcorn Penny, a $10,000 Hanover Adios Yearling Sale purchase.

Stake racing at The Meadows resumes Tuesday with the Tyler B, a $325,776 Pennsylvania Sires Stake for freshman colt and gelding pacers. First post is 12:55 PM.

by Evan PATTAK

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