World champion harness racing mares Shebestingin and Maven each set all age track records in capturing their respective Grand Circuit races at Miami Valley Raceway in Lebanon, Ohio Sunday evening.
Shebestingin and driver David Miller started off the speedy night by setting the all age track record with an ultra impressive 1:50.4 triumph in capturing the $50,300 inaugural Sam ‘Chip’ Noble, III Memorial Pace.
The Grand Circuit event for older pacing mares started off with a bang as She’s Shocking (Kayne Kauffman) went to the early lead off the starting gate with Yagonnakissmeornot (Daniel Dube) taking the pocket seat. But right away Camille (Yannick Gingras) came first-over and took command.
But that lead was short lived as Dube came first-over with Yagonnakissmeornot at the opening quarter mile in :27. The field settled down slightly, but only for a moment as on the second turn David Miller came first-over with Shebestingin and they started up to challenge the leaders passing the half mile marker in :55.3.
Down the backstretch the action began to heat up as Shebestingin closed the margin on Yagonnakissmeornot at the three-quarters in 1:23.2. Shebestingin then collared Yagonnakissmeornot and had a slight lead as they came off the final turn and headed down the stretch.
Shebestingin then showed her world class ability as she pulled away from Yagonnakissmeornot and with a :27.2 last quarter mile, stopped the teletimer with a one and one-half length triumph in 1:50.4. Yagonnakissmeornot held for second with a late closing Jerseylicious (Corey Callahan) third.
“It was a little nerve wracking with her as usual,” said winning trainer Joe Holloway. That was because Shebestingin first refused the starting gate and caused a recall before the start of the race, which the mare has done in the past. “She is just a great horse. She has her quirks. She can be a little tough at time but she is so great.”
It was the second start and second straight win on the year for Shebestingin. The four-year-old mare by Bettor’s Delight is owned by Val D’Or Farms of Millstone, NJ, Ted Geweritz of NY and L & L Devisser, LLC of Holland, MI. Shebestingin paid $5.00 to win.
The prior all age track record for pacers was 1:51.1 set by Justified on April 26.
The very next race racing fans got to see the world champion and Dan Patch Award winning mare, Maven, put on a trotting clinic for driver Yannick Gingras as she scored a two and three-quarter length victory in track record time of 1:53.3 in winning the $60,000 Miami Valley Raceway Distaff Trot.
The race started off with Rockin With Dewey and driver Jason Brewer going out to the early lead with Cowgirl Hall (Dave Palone) sitting in second place and Maven, who had also left out of the gate hung on the outside.
With no position to drop in along the rail, Gingras wasted no time and sent Maven to the front at the opening quarter mile in a speedy :27 seconds. But that was all she wrote for the rest of the field.
Maven then led the way to the half mile in :56.4. Ma Chere Hall (Corey Callahan) came first-over and gave cover on the outside to D’Orsay (Daniel Dube) but by the three-quarters in 1:26 the effort was in vain as Ma Chere Hall broke stride at the top of the stretch and Maven kicked in a :27.3 final quarter to win going away. Rockin with Dewey was second with D’Orsay third.
The time of the race set the all age track record for trotters in 1:53.3. The prior mark was 1:54.1 set by Victory Is Coming back on April 11.
“I was a little afraid when we got hung on the outside at the start,” said winning trainer Jonas Czernyson. “But Yannick said she felt strong and just went on with her. She raced very good tonight. The track was very nice tonight and the crew did a very nice job in preparing it so I hope I will be coming back to race again.
“We may race her (Maven) one more time at home,” Czernyson said. “And then go to the Eliteloop (Sweden), but either way we are definitely going overseas.”
It was the first start this year for Maven, a five-year-old mare by Glidemaster, who is owned by W.J. Donovan of Ft. Lauderdale, FL. She now has career earnings of $1,453,969.
As part of the closing night ceremonies for Miami Valley Raceway’s inaugural race meet, presentations were made to the meets leading driver and trainer. Kayne Kauffman was the leading driver with 86 wins and Virgil Morgan, Jr. took the honors as the leading trainer in a tight battle with 33 victories from his stable.
by Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink.com