Day At The Track

Francie's Dream back on top in Invitational

08:08 AM 14 May 2011 NZST
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Francie’s Dream and Peter Wrenn
Francie’s Dream and Peter Wrenn - win the featured $24,000 Fillies and Mares Invitational
Photo by Linscott Photography

Francie's Dream and harness racing leading driver Peter Wrenn made it a gate to wire effort to win the featured $24,000 Fillies and Mares Invitational Friday, May 13 at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino. The duo turned in a time of 1:52.3 for the win.

Two late scratches reduced the field to eight starters behind the Todd Nixon starting gate, giving Francie’s Dream a starting spot from post six. The seven-year-old Dream Work mare had no issues getting to the lead early, placing Native Hotspur and Sam Widger right at her back. Fractions of :27.3, :56.3, and 1:24.1 were established for the field, which had very little movement until the final turn.

In the stretch, Wrenn asked Francie’s Dream to step it up a notch and she responded. Native Hotspur tipped off her back with hopes of beating her to the wire, but their efforts were unsuccessful, settling for second a length back of Francie’s Dream. Hoponit and Jason Dillander made a mild late rally to finish third.

Trained by Ron Otto, Francie’s Dream now has 20 career wins, a majority of which have been recorded under the direction of Otto. With more than $355,000 in career earnings, she has been a wise investment for owner Shirley Otto of Jefferson, Ohio. Francie’s Dream now has three wins in eight starts this season with only one of those efforts outside of the top three.

The win for Wrenn was one of two on the card. Wrenn continues to lead the driver standings with a comfortable margin, earning 64 wins through the first 32 racing days. The native of Michigan is currently working on his third straight title at Hoosier Park.

Another big winner for the evening was Driver Trace Tetrick, who earned four wins on the card. Tetrick is currently in fourth place on the list of leading drivers, just one behind Sam Widger, who scored four wins the previous evening. Hall of Famer Dave Magee is two wins ahead of Widger, sitting in second on the roster.

In the training ranks, Charlie Stewart jumped out to an early lead and has never relinquished his hold on the top spot. The 24-year-old trainer is currently in his sixth season as a trainer and has 20 wins through the first 32 nights of racing.

A native of nearby Alexandria, Ind., Stewart got his first introduction to racing during middle school through Modie Beeman, who recently passed away. He worked for several trainers at Hoosier Park, including Dick Macomber, which inspired his current stable colors of maroon, gold, and black. Eventually, Stewart landed into a routine of winter racing at Pompano Park followed by the Indiana circuit. The majority of his horses race in the claiming ranks and are owned by Ned Simmons of Margate, Fla.

Tammy KNOX

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