Anyone see a mirror Image at Southwind Farms?
In 1989, Valley Victory was undefeated as a three-year-old, won his last 10 lifetime starts and went to stud at Southwind Farms.
Twenty years later, Muscle Hill was undefeated as a three-year-old, won his final 20 career starts and went to stud at Southwind Farms.
Both colts won the Hambletonian with offspring from their first crop — Valley Victory in 1994 with Victory Dream and Muscle Hill in 2014 with Trixton.
Both won the Hambletonian with offspring from their third crops and were both first and second in the race — in 1996 Continentalvictory defeated Lindy Lane and in 2016 Marion Marauder defeated Southwind Frank.
Both had at least one prominent female who went against the boys in their first three crops:
Valley Victory had Act Of Grace (second in the Dancer and second in her Hambletonian elimination) and
Continentalvictory (Horse of the Year).
Muscle Hill had Mission Brief, who was the favorite in the 2015 Hambletonian final.
Compelling Casie Coleman
From 1997 to 2003, Casie Coleman won 84 races and some $300,000 in purses — total.
In 2005, she was the first trainer to have a sub-1:48 sophomore in a race (American Ideal – 1:47.4)
From 2010 to 2014, she had a sophomore pacing colt/gelding win over $750,000 each year — 2010 – Sportswriter, 2011 – Betterthancheddar, 2012 – Michaels Power, 2013 – Vegas Vacation, 2014 – McWicked. No other trainer has ever done this more than three times in a row.
Now she’s back again with maybe the best colt of all — Betting Line.
Can Coleman join Linda Toscano (2012) and Nancy Johansson (2014) as the third female trainer with a Horse of the Year?
David Miller, the defending Driver of the Year, may indeed have his first Horse of the Year (Betting Line) in 13 seasons since he last did it in 2003 with No Pan Intended.
From 2005 Hoof Beats, Tyler Smith, then 12, said, “Someday, I’d like to be like John Campbell.” Good start.
New Four H Club
Homicide Hunter and Hannelore Hanover both are world-record setters in 2016
If Betting Line continues his winning ways and is named Horse Of The Year, it would mark the first time a three-year-old that did not participate in the Meadowlands Pace was named as such.
Spellbound and Syrinx
Marion Marauder’s dam, Spellbound Hanover, actually out-earned Syrinx Hanover as a two-year-old in 2000. She banked $748,346, $67,549 more than Syrinx, who would run the table as a sophomore. This is certainly not a case of like mother like son, though. Marauder was only victorious once at two while Spellbound Hanover sported a fancy 15 11-3-1 slate winning from June until November for a pair of Bills: Popfinger and Mulligan.
Wiggle It Jiggleit has done it again. He’s the first horse to reach $1 million two straight years and he’s also just the third horse in the sport’s history to back up a $2 million campaign with a $1 million+ season (joining Gallo Blue Chip 2000-2001 and Market Share 2012-2013). If he maintains his top form and if he is named Horse of the Year again, it would be the first time since 1998-1999 than any horse repeated (Moni Maker) and the first pacer to double up back-to-back since Cam Fella (1982-1983)
Zeron and Haughton
Scotty Zeron, at 27, is the youngest driver to ever debut in the Hambletonian and win it. Tommy Haughton (winner at 25 in 1982 with Speed Bowl) had already been in it. He was second in 1980 with Final Score when stablemate Burgomeister won it. Tommy was just 23 at the time.
Paula and her Peanut
Paula Wellwood captured her first Hambletonian in 2016, but it is likely that Paula’s Peanut captured her heart first. She was given “Peanut” as a present for Christmas at age six, and wouldn’t you know it, went on to become an Ontario Sires Stake champion.
90 years ago
In 1926, 90 years ago as of Aug. 30, the first Hambletonian was held at Syracuse Fairgrounds. It was the largest crowd for any New York Sire Stakes day and Guy McKinney won the Hambletonian in straight heats for Nat Ray. The $73,451 pot was bigger than any of the next 23 Hambletonian purses! The $73,451 pot was more than the top six trotting sophomore purses of 1923 combined.