by Thomas Hedlund
Björn Goop drove his Maharajah son Moni Viking to an upset win in the $295,000 Åby Stora Pris over 3,140 meters at Åby on Saturday (Aug. 13) afternoon and the Norwegian-bred trotter impressed a lot when he disarmed first choice leader Hail Mary in the home stretch.
The distance of 3,140 meters is an unusual distance for the elite trotters and the Åby Stora Pris is kind of mystique race, where the strong horses get their chances to claim a big title with a high purse.
Hail Mary was quick from the start and Örjan Kihlström set the autopilot on 1:57.2 (mile rate) pace throughout the race. And nothing much happened until the last back stretch when Gabriele Gelormini stepped on the pedal with his drive Kennedy. The increase in speed was tangible and it became tough for horses in the back of the field to connect with the front runners. Still, when it was time for home stretch, a fourth over trotting Moni Viking proved to be the fastest horses in the field.
Hail Mary was defenseless when Goop’s trotter sprinted to safe win in a mile rate of 1:56.3 and open stretch finisher Oracle Tile took the bronze medal behind the two front horses.
Goop was very emotional in the winner’s circle after the race. His father Olle, who died earlier this year, had his birthday on this special day and it was like someone directed this day in Goop’s favor.
Moni Viking claimed his second title in the Åby Stora Pris. The 9-year-old chestnut won at Åby in 2020 and the Saturday win meant he surpassed 10,000,000 Swedish crowns (approximately $975,000) in lifetime earnings.
A world record performance was set in the 4-years-old race, the $42,500 Ragnar Thorngrens Minne over 1.3 miles just 30 minutes before the start of the Åby Stora Pris. Italian-bred mare Calypso di Poggio (Ready Cash), driven by Jörgen Sjunnesson, was served a perfect pocket trip and when leader Akilles Face lost his gait in the last turn, Calypso di Poggio was hard to beat for the rest of the gang. Erik Bondo, operating as trainer in Italy, trains the new world record holder. Calypso di Poggio came home in a mile rate of 1:54.1.
BACK TO BACK FOR BEDAZZLED SOX IN E3?
Roger Walmann-trained Bedazzled Sox (Brillantissime) took a safe wire-to-wire win when the $388,000 E3 over 1.3 miles was held in the beginning of July and this Saturday (Aug. 20) the 3-year-old has a great chance of repeating when the distance is a mile in Örebro.
Bedazzled Sox solved his elimination race without problem from a bad post and in Saturday’s final he starts from post 3, which suits him well since he has proved to have the useful ability to leave quickly behind the gate.
Pekka Korpi’s Corazon combo and Svante Båth-trained Drake Kronos won their eliminations, respectively and 10 trotters chase the $196,000 E3 title for colts and geldings.
In the $196,000 E3 for fillies, the story seems to be very open, even if the five elimination winners were all good. Timo Nurmos trained Beat It (Broadway Hall) was the fastest winner (1:54.2) and from post 4 she can be tough to beat.
E3 FINAL FOR COLTS AND GELDINGS
Horse – Sire – Driver
1. Corazon Combo – Express Duo – Pekka Korpi
2. Drake Kronos – Muscle Hill – Ulf Ohlsson
3. Bedazzled Sox – Brillantissime – Torbjörn Jansson
4. Ante la Roque – Uncle Lasse – Örjan Kihlström
5. Beenthereseenthat – Broadway Hall – Mattias Djuse
6. Following – Nuncio – Björn Goop
7. Jax Journey – Nuncio – Claes Sjöström
8. Waterford Wine – Propulsion – Erik Adielsson
9. Jack J.E. – Nuncio – Magnus A Djuse
10. Joe Dalton – Father Patrick – Magnus Jakobsson
E3 FINAL FOR FILLIES
Horse – Sire – Driver
1. Lollo Trot – Southwind Frank – Kim Eriksson
2. Jewilla – Propulsion – Mats E Djuse
3. Dea Grif – Varenne – Santtu Raitala
4. Beat It – Broadway Hall – Örjan Kihlström
5. O’Mara Zon – Maharajah – Daniel Wäjersten
6. Decision Maker – Nuncio – Björn Goop
7. Caradja – Maharajah – Ulf Ohlsson
8. Independence Day – Chelsea Boko – Oskar Kylin Blom
9. Crazy Life – Nuncio – Per Lennartsson
10. Brilliant Minds – Muscle Mass – Mika Forss
SAN MOTEUR – THE HORSE TO BEAT TODAY
Solvalla plays host to a great race card today (Aug. 17) where the $295,000 Jubileumspokalen for 5-year-olds is the most prestigious race.
Panne de Moteur son San Moteur, trained and driven by Björn Goop, will face a post 10 start among nine opponents over 1.3 miles. The race holds high class with horses like Önas Prince, Bubble Effe and Mister Hercules in the field.
The $195,000 European Championship for mares over 1.3 miles has collected 12 trotters from most of the European harness racing countries. French bred 5-year-old Heliade du Goutier (Prodigious), trained by Sébastien Guarato will be one of the favorites in the race.
Horse – Driver
1. Cicero T.G. – Magnus Teien Gundersen
2. Hipster Am – Magnus A Djuse
3. Global Badman – Daniel Wäjersten
4. Mister Hercules – Örjan Kihlström
5. Bubble Effe – Alessandro Gocciadoro
6. Readly Lavec – Oskar J Andersson
7. Chiru – Claes Sjöström
8. Chestnut Hill – Ulf Ohlsson
9. Önas Prince – Per Nordström
10. San Moteur – Björn Goop
EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP FOR MARES
Horse (Nationality) – Driver
1. Namanga Bo (Germany) – Rick Ebbinge
2. Helidade du Goutier (France) – Gabriele Gelormini
3. Honey Mearas (Sweden) – Örjan Kihlström
4. Eenymeentminymoe (Denmark) – Flemming Jensen
5. Miracle Tile (Norway) – Erik Adielsson
6. Kali Smart (The Netherlands) – Adrian Kolgjini
7. Chicharita (Finland) – Jorma Kontio
8. Zeudi Amg (Italy) – Alessandro Gocciadoro
9. Sayonara (Sweden) – Carl Johan Jepson
10. Her Royal Highness (Finland) – Jukka Torvinen
11. Racing Brodda (Seden) – Rikard N Skoglund
12. Miss Pepper (Norway) – Åsbjörn Tengsareid
GERMAN DERBY ON THE CARD
Mariendorf in Berlin opens its gates for a Derby weekend this Saturday (Aug. 20) and Sunday (Aug. 21) where the mares race on the Saturday’s card.
The purse of $61,250 is at stake in the German Derby for mares over 1,900 meters Saturday and 12 horses chase fame and glory in Berlin while the colts and geldings fight for the purse of $122,500 the day after.
The Dutch duo Paul Hagoort and Robin Bakker, who have had a very successful year so far in high staked races in Europe, have a great shot in Usain Lobell (Bold Eagle) in Sunday’s Derby.
Horse – Sire – Driver
1. Teatox – Orlando Vici – Rudolf Haller
2. Grand Ready Cash – Readly Express – Dion Tesselaar
3. Days Of Thunder – S.J.’s Caviar – Thorsten Tietz
4. Usain Lobell – Bold Eagle – Robin Bakker
5. Lorens Flevo – S.J.’s Caviar – Michael Nimczyk
6. Oblivion – S.J.’s Caviar – Erwin Bot
7. Rob The Bank – The Bank – Jaap Van Rijn
8. Orkan Bo – S.J.’s Caviar – Marciano Hauber
9. Midsommer Records – Maharajah – Stefan Persson
10. Staccato HL – Muscle Hill – Robbin Bot
11. Un Mec Paasloo – Un Mec d’Heripre – Cees Kamminga
12. Lucky Charly – Charly du Noyer – Michel Rothengatter
GERMAN DERBY FOR MARES
Horse – Sire – Driver
1. Luna Scott – Traders – Robbin Bot
2. Sunset Boulevard – Maharajah – Michael Nimczyk
3. Riet Hazelaar – S.J.’s Caviar – Robin Bakker
4. Precious Thing – Mister J.P. – Jörgen S Eriksson
5. Quick Star – Creatine – Roberto Vecchione
6. Rose Hill – Ready Cash – Jaap Van Rijn
7. Isla – Prodigious – Tim Schwarma
8. Flotte Biene – Baltimore As – Kornelius Kluth
9. All In Love – Ready Express – Dion Tesselaar
10. Alwine – Manofmanymissions – Dennis Spangelberg
11. Nesaia – Bourbon Blue – Thomas Panschow
12. Gri My Dream – Cristal Money – Herbert Tuscher
Jan Friis trained Hnokki Speed (Wishing Stone) won the $77,000 Jydsk 3 årings Grand Prix for 3-year-olds in Århus, Denmark on Sunday (Aug. 14) afternoon. Driver Birger Jörgensen hit the lead in the first turn in the 1.4 miles long race and in that position, Hnokki Speed proved hard to beat even if first over racing Howlingatthemoon gave it a serious try in the last turn. Hnokki Speed sprinted to safe win in mile rate 2:00.2 and the horse belongs in the top of the Danish ”H-crop”.
Hnokki Speed’s sire, Kentucky Futurity winner Wishing
Stone, died earlier this summer in Italy, where he worked as a stud.