Milligan’s School upsets in Sundsvall

by Thomas Hedlund

The Sundsvall Open Trot ($198,000) at Bergsåker racetrack was held over 1.3 miles for many top trotters in Europe on Saturday afternoon. Prix d’Amérique-winner Readly Express (Ready Cash) was the horse to beat and the bettors put their big trust in Timo Nurmos’ trotter.

Pastore Bob left quickly for the lead and Jorma Kontio found his space in position second over with Ready Express. Heavy Sound kept his position first over and Readly Express could save the attack until the last half mile of the race.

But the heavy favorite struggled three wide in the last turn and Readly Express was a beaten horse when the field turned for home stretch.

When Heavy Sound ran out of gas with 200 meters to go, Ulf Eriksson found space from the two-hole with Milligan’s School and the 5-year-old son of Yankee Glide easily sprinted to the victory in impressive mile rate of 1:52.4.

”This horse has just been better for every attempt lately. He responds on everything we change and today we decided to let him try another bike for the first time in Sweden. I early felt that he was in the game and we couldn’t get a better trip than this. When I let him attack the leader in the home stretch, I felt that my horse could run the whole day if it was necessary. For me, this victory is really big and I’m very satisfied right now”, said driver Ulf Eriksson, who noted his biggest success in his long career as a driver.

Stefan Melander bought the American-bred trotter from Julie Miller’s stable in November, 2016. By that time, the son of Yankee Glide had shown great capacity in U.S. and was early one the best trotters in the crop.

As a 2-year-old, Milligan’s School won Bluegrass Stakes ($72,000), International Stallion Stakes ($53,200) and eliminations to Pennsylvania Sire Stakes ($36,030) and Peter Haughton Memorial ($20,000).

The season after, he won a consolation in Earl Beal Jr. Memorial ($75.000) and finished second behind Bar Hopping in Zweig Memorial. When Milligan’s School left America for Sweden, he had 10 victories in 34 starts and 548.233 dollars on his bank account.

After the victory in Sundsvall Open Trot, the son of Yankee Glide has $773,072 in earnings.

Sorbet finished strongly from third inside and took the silver medal ahead of leading Pastore Bob.

Readly Express finished fifth in 1:53.2.