by Carol Hodes
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – August 2, 2014 – In a five-horse photo, 90-1 Sweet Rock prevailed in the $225,000 Anthony Abbatiello New Jersey Classic, producing a stakes record payoff of $187.80 in the fourth race on Saturday, August 2, 2014, Hambletonian Day at the Meadowlands.
Sweet Rock, a gelded son of Rocknroll Hanover, produced immediate dividends for his ownership of Legacy Racing of Seaford, DE, Reginald Hazzard II of Millsboro DE and Gary Calloway of Bethel, DE, who purchased him for $63,000 at the Tattersalls Summer Mixed Sale on July 27 at the Meadowlands.
Brett Miller weaved Sweet Rock through a crowded stretch, getting up for a nose tally over Beat The Drum [Tell All]. Bushwacker [Rocknroll Hanover], who cut the fractions of 26.3, 55.1, 1:22, was third by a head.
The mile was clocked in 1:49.4.
“I knew absolutely nothing about him,” said Miller. “Just by off the program I was looking at his lines, I mean he looks like a nice colt. The trainer [Wayne Givens] said to me they just purchased him. They just bought the colt. He said I don’t know much about him, and he handed me the lines and here we are.
“Know what, honestly, I got lucky,” Miller added. “I kinda stayed in and just kept weaving my way through traffic. Halfway down the stretch I thought he was a winner, but I had no room. And things just opened up. We got lucky,. He shot right through there and got the job done.”
It was the second lifetime win for Sweet Rock who has made 14 starts this year and 21 lifetime. The winner’s share of $112,500 lifted his earnings $160,903.
The New Jersey Classic, restricted to New Jersey-sired three-year-old pacers, is sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey.
When she is good, she is very good. When she is bad, she has broken stride.
Gettingreadytoroll [Rocknroll Hanover] was at her best, putting away a challenge from Act Now [Western Ideal] in the $100,000 Thomas D’Altrui Miss New Jersey, the third race on Saturday, August 2, 2014 at the Meadowlands.
Yannick Gingras pressed Gettingreadytoroll, the 3-5 favorite who paid $3.20 to win, to the lead on the backstretch through quarters of 26, 52.4 and 1:21.4, crossing the wire in 1:50.1 and finishing a half-length ahead of Act Now.
It was three and a quarter lengths to Kate Can’t Wait [Rocknroll Hanover] in third.
The Miss New Jersey, restricted to New Jersey-sired three-year-old pacing fillies, is sponsored by the Standardbred Breeders & Owners Association of New Jersey.
“We were going pretty good,” said Gingras. “When Brian [Sears with Act Now] made the move, I thought the only way his mare would beat me is if she cut the mile. I knew I was going to get a pretty big half, but I took my chance anyway.”
Gettingreadytoroll, trained by Jimmy Takter, is owned by Christina Takter of East Windsor, NJ and brothers John and Jim Fielding of Toronto, Ontario. She was a $30,000 Harrisburg Sale yearling purchase.
It was her fourth win in eight starts this year, five wins in 10 lifetime, and lifted her bankroll to $105,957.