Day At The Track

Owners excited about Kentucky Futurity

09:09 AM 10 Oct 2015 NZDT
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Pinkman and connections after The Hambletonian victory Pinkman and Brian Sears win the Hambletonian
Pinkman and connections after The Hambletonian victory
Lisa Photo
Pinkman and Brian Sears win the Hambletonian

Joyce McClelland and her husband Richard have spent 35 years in harness racing, but have never enjoyed a year like this one. Pinkman has left them tickled pink.

Pinkman, who counts Joyce McClelland among his owners, is the 2-1 morning line favorite in Saturday's $527,000 Kentucky Futurity for 3-year-old trotters at The Red Mile in Lexington. The gelding will start from post No. 9 with Yannick Gingras driving for trainer Jimmy Takter.

Post time is 1 p.m. for the first race on a stakes-filled card at The Red Mile. The $262,500 Kentucky Filly Futurity for 3-year-old female trotters is scheduled for 4:29 p.m., followed by the $450,000 Tattersalls Pace for 3-year-old male pacers and the Kentucky Futurity. Mission Brief is the 3-5 morning line favorite in the filly event and Lost For Words is the 7-2 choice in the Tattersalls.

Pinkman has won 10 of 14 races this year and earned $1.48 million. He heads to the Kentucky Futurity off a victory in the $532,000 Canadian Trotting Classic on Sept. 19 at Mohawk Racetrack and his other triumphs include the million-dollar Hambletonian Stakes, $500,000 Beal Memorial, and $370,000 Zweig Memorial.

In addition to McClelland, the gelding is owned by Christina Takter, John and Jim Fielding, and Herb Liverman.

The McClellands live in central Ohio, where they have owned and bred well more than 100 horses. Among their successes, they bred two-time Breeders Crown champion Call For Rain and co-owned 2011 Yonkers Trot winner Leader Of The Gang, who also was trained by Takter.

And now there is Pinkman.

"It's been the most amazing racing year of our careers," Joyce McClelland said. "We're still a little in shock, I think. Winning the Hambletonian is just amazing. I don't know how else I can put it. We had our three children and their spouses there. We all wore pink and we all went a little crazy after the race.

"Wherever we go, people still come up to us and are congratulating us. We're very thankful and very grateful and very proud and very happy."

Takter has five of the 10 horses in the Futurity, with French Laundry, The Bank, Uncle Lasse, and Canepa Hanover joining Pinkman in the field.

Multiple-stakes-winner Crazy Wow is the 7-2 second choice. He will start from post No. 5 with Tim Tetrick driving for trainer Ron Burke.

The Kentucky Futurity is the third jewel in the Trotting Triple Crown. Pinkman won the first jewel, the Hambletonian, on Aug. 8 at the Meadowlands and Habitat won the second, the Yonkers Trot, on Sept. 5 at Yonkers Raceway. Habitat was not entered in the Futurity.

Pinkman will face a tough task in the Futurity, due in part to the outside starting spot in the 10-horse field. But as the winner of 16 of 22 lifetime races and $2.05 million, Pinkman usually finds a way to prevail. He has won back-to-back starts since suffering a three-race skid - the only losing streak of his career.

"Drawing the nine hole is always tough, but he's got a huge heart and we'll see what he can do," McClelland said. "I think Yannick put it best. Someone said (Pinkman) is coming back, and Yannick said, 'He never left.' That's just such a good thing to feel. He's never left. He's an amazing horse. We're just thrilled."

Following is the field in post order for the Kentucky Futurity with drivers, trainers, and morning line odds:

1. Aldebaran Eagle, Corey Callahan, Jonas Czernyson, 20-1

2. French Laundry, Brett Miller, Jimmy Takter, 12-1

3. Crescent Fashion, Scott Zeron, Ake Svanstedt, 20-1

4. The Bank, Jimmy Takter, Jimmy Takter, 6-1

5. Crazy Wow, Tim Tetrick, Ron Burke, 7-2

6. Uncle Lasse, David Miller, Jimmy Takter, 9-2

7. Canepa Hanover, Dave Palone, Jimmy Takter, 10-1

8. Honor And Serve, Matt Kakaley, Jim Campbell, 20-1

9. Pinkman, Yannick Gingras, Jimmy Takter, 2-1

10. Muscle Diamond, John Campbell, Brett Bittle, 10-1

For Saturday's complete card at The Red Mile, click here.

by Ken Weingartner

Harness Racing Communications

USTA

 

 

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