Bauder family has Hackett Final favorite with the emerging Sectionline Bigry

April 20, 2018

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by Jay Wolf

Winning never gets old, especially when the winning is a family affair.

You can’t blame owners Harold Lee Bauder (son) and Harold L. Bauder (father) and trainer Steve Bauder (cousin/nephew) for being a little ecstatic with the early season success of their homebred sophomore pacing colt, Sectionline Bigry.

As a freshman, Sectionline Bigry scored just one win in 10 seasonal starts, earning $41,479. The lone win came in the colt’s second career start, the first leg of the $40,000 Ohio Sires Stakes at Scioto Downs on Independence Day in 1:54.2.

“Last year he got a little sick. He had a couple of poor draws and some bad racing luck,” said Harold Lee Bauder. “We figured out that he was bleeding a little, but the schedule wouldn’t allow us to get him on Lasix. So he’s now on Lasix, he grew up and we let the hobbles out a couple of inches.”

As a result of that growth and a cleaner bill of health, Sectionline Bigry has become an early threat in the sophomore pacing division on the Ohio circuit.

In just four 2018 starts, the homebred son of Pet Rock has three wins and a second place finish.

On April 3, in the $17,500 Omar Hiteman Memorial series final for non-winners of 2, Sectionline Bigry established a new Miami Valley Raceway track record for three-year-old pacing colts when he scored a neck victory over the heavily favored Mindtrip in 1:51.

The colt’s next start was a week later in the James Hackett Memorial elimination. Saddled with post 8, driver Tyler Smith was forced to race from off the pace and was parked most of the mile. Sectionline Bigry gutted out a 1 ½ length win in 1:51.3 over the favored Bounding Dragon.

For Saturday’s (April 21) $40,000 Hackett Final, Sectionline Bigry has been installed as the 2-1 morning line choice, leaving again from post 8.

Despite the second straight poor post draw, the younger Bauder remains optimistic.

“Like John Campbell said, ‘You have to start somewhere.’ We are on the gate, we have an opportunity. If we get the right trip, he will be alright.”

Sectionline Bigry’s dam, Aquatic Yankee, is a major part of the Bauder family affair.

Aquatic Yankee was a stellar performer for the Bauders in the late 1990s and early 2000s. The Cambest daughter earned over $750,000 during her five years on the track. She finished on the board in 50 of her 80 career starts, placing second in the 2001 Breeders Crown Mare Pace and fourth in 2000 Crown Final.

As a broodmare, Aquatic Yankee has produced seven winners in 1:55, out of eight foals of racing age. Five of her foals have earned more than $200,000; Fire On The Water ($436,116), Aqua Artist ($354,306), Sectionline Yankee ($350,075), Sectionline Aqua ($307,958) and Sectionlinefriskie ($207,273).

“She has done really well (as a dam). She had a colt early (Fire On The Water), then she had a bunch of fillies. We said that if she had another colt, we were going to keep him. We really don’t want to race colts, but with Aquatic Yankee getting older (now 22 years of age), we wanted to keep the colt.”

The “Sectionline” moniker is as a tribute to the Bauder farm located on Delaware County’s Sectionline Road, just a few miles from the Delaware County Fairgrounds.

The Bauders’ nephew and cousin, Steve Bauder, was the trainer of Aquatic Yankee and is the conditioner of Sectionline Bigry.

Steve spent a number of years on the Illinois circuit, but was swayed to return to Ohio and its growing stakes program.

“We pretty much told him that the Illinois program was going nowhere and that Ohio was picking up, so he moved back to Ohio a few years ago,” said Harold Lee Bauder. “(Steve) wanted to train at the Greenville track (Darke County Fairgrounds). It was shocking that he didn’t want to train at Delaware, but he loves the Greenville track.”

So what is down the road for Sectionline Bigry?

The owners are taking it a few weeks at a time.

“Unfortunately, we are going to race seven weeks in a row. After the sire stakes (May 6), we will give him some time off to regroup.”

The $40,000 James Hackett Memorial final is scheduled as the 11th race on the Miami Valley Raceway card with an estimated post time of 9:25 p.m.

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