Day At The Track

Miss Moon Light has been a pleasant surprise

10:27 PM 19 Apr 2013 NZST
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While there are plenty of disappointments for horsemen in the harness racing industry there are some pleasant surprises as well. The four-year-old Iowa bred mare Miss Moon Light has been one of those cheery revelations for the Wisconsin based father-son tandem of trainer Jesse and driver John De Long.

Miss Moon Light is making her eighth start Friday night at Maywood Park since joining the De Long's and has already has rattled off four season wins for the stable.

The mare arrived to the DeLong's with a mark of 2:05.1 on an Iowa fair track, her only win in 30 career starts. Her two seasons of racing earnings were less than $5,500.

Nevertheless Miss Moon Light has since lowered her mark to 1:57.3 at Maywood and has almost $14,000 on her card for the Clinton, Wisconsin stable.

"Steve Coulter, who bred her, raced her in Iowa and the filly really didn't show anything as a 3-year-old, "said John De Long. "She was just kind of mediocre. One of our employees bought her at an Amish sale in Iowa last year for very little money

"We asked if he wanted to sell her and he said yes so we ended up buying her and we also didn't pay a lot of money.

"The plan was to send her out east but the trainer we have out there just didn't have any stalls available so we kept her here and raced her at Maywood where she has really come along really well. I really like her. She's a nice horse."

Miss Moon Light was sired by Hot Pans, a son of Artsplace and is the first foal of the dam Sam's Night Out.

"Since we got Miss Moon Light we've and treated her the same way we treat all of our horses and she really has really developed for us," continued the 24-year-old De Long. "I think she's turned into a heck of a racehorse.

"Miss Moon Light won her last start (on April 9) pretty handily. She won her non-winners of two by something by 9 lengths when I rolled her on the backstretch. I later raced her on the front and she won that way as well.

"And I don't think I've found the bottom of her yet."

With the step up in class Miss Moon Light will open up as the 5-1 programmed fourth choice in the 13th race for fillies and mares without earnings of $5,500 in their last five races, non-winners of five races lifetime or $25,000 lifetime.

The pre-race favorites are Cheese Plumber (Ryan Anderson) at 3-1, Jets Are On (Josh Sutton) at 7-2 and Park Lane Heather (John Roberts) at 9-2.

Cowgirl's Rock (12-1), T E's Zenyatta (10-1), Waiting And Hoping (8-1), Melodie Hotspur (12-1) and Bluebird Regal (15-1) complete the field.

By Mike Paradise

The Illinois Harness Horsemen's Association

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