by Bob Heyden
September 30 marked the 25th anniversary of Jennas Beach Boy’s 1:48.4 world record for sophomores at the Red Mile — this after missing the entire summer due to a P1 Break. It lowered Nihilator’s mark set 10 years and one month earlier at the Meadowlands (1:49.3).
Joe Holloway trained Jennas Beach Boy for Linda and Lee DeVisser and William Fahy drove the son of first crop sire Beach Towel. The very next year he would lower the all age mark to 1:47.3. His sophomore mark lasted exactly five years before P B Bullville won in 1:48 on Sept. 30, 2000.
All Hanover M. Pace?
In hindsight, we may need to refer to the 2020 Meadowlands Pace as the Hanover Meadowlands Pace. Winner Tall Dark Stranger will stand at the famed Pennsylvania farm, as will runner-up Papi Rob Hanover. Who was third? Allywag Hanover.
Father-son Jug dominance
Somebeachsomewhere and his son, Captaintreacherous, together sired 17 of the 25 entered in this year’s Jug/Jugette, won both finals and went 1-2 in the Jug finale. SBSW had nine and Captain eight.
Déjà vu between the 2014 and 2020 Jug
Six years ago, the Jug winner was Limelight Beach who won twice on the same day after being winless on the year (0-12). This year, Captain Barbossa (12 0-5-1) was the only winless sophomore in the field this year going into the final.
Million dollar freshmen
Andrew McCarthy teamed with Julie Miller to win the first ever Mohawk Million with Venerate, a 2-year-old trotting colt by Love You. Care to guess when the last freshman trotting colt won a million-dollar race? McCarthy was not yet born. It came in 1985 when Express Ride and George Sholty won the Peter Haughton final, which went for seven figures in both 1984 and 1985 with Another Miracle winning the first one with Mickey McNichol.
Tony Alagna is now only the second trainer to ever win his first Jug and Hambletonian in the very same year. In 1950, Del Miller did it first with Dudley Hanover and Lusty Song, respectively. Coincidentally, Miller also did so with a filly in the Hambletonian and a colt in the Jug.
Steve Stewart’s huge night
Steve Stewart is the breeder or co-breeder of both feature winners last Saturday at Woodbine Mohawk Park — Venerate and Exploit in the Mohawk Million and the Metro, respectively.
Andrew McCarthy joins Tim Tetrick (2012) and John Campbell (1995) as the only three drivers to sweep all the million-dollar races on the sports menu for an calendar year.
In 1995, Campbell won with Tagliabue in the Hambletonian and Davids Pass in both the NA Cup and the Meadowlands Pace.
In 2012, Tetrick won with Captaintreacherous in the $1,010,000 Metro, then Market Share in the $1,500,000 Hambletonian and $1,030,000 Canadian Trotting Classic.
This year, McCarthy won with Ramona Hill in the $1,000,000 Hambletonian and Venerate in the $1,000,000 Mohawk Million.
Three of the six horses on the board in this year’s million-dollar races were sired by French sires Ready Cash and Love You — Ready For Moni and Back Of The Neck second and third, respectively in the Hambletonian and Venerate the winner of the Mohawk Million.