by Thomas Hedlund
Trainer Daniel Redén had some tough minutes at Jägersro racetrack in Malmö, Sweden on Tuesday night.
From beside the track, Redén saw his Propulsion (Muscle Hill) three wide during the last 1,200 meters of mile race, the $205,000 Hugo Åbergs Memorial. It was a trip that no normal horse can overcome to win.
But as driver Örjan Kihlström said after the race: Propulsion is not a normal trotter. Fact is that Propulsion won this race for the third year in a row and this time trainer Redén experienced some roller coaster feelings, both during and after the spectacular race.
Dante Boko kept the lead easily from post one and the pace was not as high as expected. That made Erik Adielsson to make a move from second over with Diamanten and with 5/8ths of a mile to go, Diamanten was first over, a position that Adielsson very much wanted to keep when Propulsion got an order to attack three wide.
The American bred 7-year-old Muscle Hill son Propulsion had to do the job outside of two of his main opponents during the last lap and when he disarmed both Diamanten and Dante Boko with 200 meters to go, Kihlström put in another gear in his horse. Propulsion flew away to a four lengths victory in 1:51.3 and trainer Daniel Redén had hard to find the words after the race.
“I don’t know what to say,” Redén said. “This performance was so great that I have hard time to say anything at all right now. With a half mile to go, I turned around and was about to head for the stable, thinking that we will try in another race soon this summer. It was over for him at that point. Normally, it’s impossible to win a race in this category like this, but Propulsion has strength like no other horse that I’ve made contact with. I’m most happy about the fact that Propulsion could show this strength to everyone that saw him today.”
“We talked about this thing during the week, that Propulsion has been more than great in every single race since he came from America, except in Finlandia-ajo last year,” Kihlström said. “Then he finished second, and that was in a Group 1-race, so that tells a lot about his capacity. He’s just such an incredible horse. Wise and easy to handle in every moment and without doubt one of the best trotters I’ve driven in my career.”
French trotter Up and Quick was second after a strong finish and Pastore Bob took the bronze medal.
Kolgjini to 3,000
Top trainer Lutfi Kolgjini reached a nice milestone on his home track Jägersro on the night of Hugo Åbergs Memorial. With 2-year-old Muscle Massive mare Sashay My Way Erik Adielsson steered Kolgjini’s 3,000th victory as a trainer. The charismatic son of Albania has produced several top trotters in Europe during the past 20 years.
Horses such as Viking Kronos, Going Kronos, Lavec Kronos, Revenue, Mosaique Face, Joke Face, Rajesh Face, Platon Face and Dante Boko have all been trained by Kolgjini and it was appropriate that he reached 3,000 victories on a night like this, on his home track.