By Ray Cotolo, for The Red Mile
LEXINGTON, KY— Despite an hour-and-a-half delay provoked by a blown transformer near the first turn, the $336,000 Bluegrass for two-year-old filly trotters was contested in four divisions on Thursday, September 25.
Scratched down to a field of four in the pari-mutual spectrum, Wild Honey, off a world-record 1:55.2 mile at Delaware, Ohio, coasted around the Lexington oval to win in 1:55.2, with a :26.3 final quarter.
Able to put up fractions of :29.2, :59.3 (:30.1), and 1:28.4 (:29.1), Wild Honey led foes Onda Di Mare, Love Me Madly, Shafina Hanover, and Hot Stuff, respectively, in her gate-to-wire performance. They remained in that order as Wild Honey sprinted to the wire in :26.3 to win in 1:55.2.
Owned by Christina Takter, John and Jim Fielding, and Herb Liverman, the Cantab Hall-U Wanna Lindy-S J’s Photo daughter paid $2.10 to win. She’s trained by Jimmy Takter and driven by Yannick Gingras. Winning seven of eight starts, the Pennsylvania Sires Stakes champion has now amassed $312,656 in earnings.
Jolene Jolene, sent off the 8/5-second choice, equaled the world record for freshmen filly trotters of 1:52.1 in division two of Bluegrass action.
Classical Annie circled around Scented Roses to secure command through a :28.2 first quarter.
Passing three-eighths, Jolene Jolene made a furious bid from fourth to commandeer the field.
Clearing in a :56.3 (:28.1) half-mile, her lead began to grow into the far turn.
Leading by 5 lengths through a 1:24 (:27.2) third quarter, driver David Miller kept Jolene Jolene to task while Lock Down Lindy tried to close, as well as Gold Cora and Sweet Thing. As Lock Down Lindy broke, Gold Cora and Sweet Thing took over second and third while Jolene Jolene was striding to an 8-length victory in 1:52.1 (:28.1).
Returning $5.40 to win, the Muscle Hill-Celebrity Speedie-Malabar Man daughter is owned by William Donovan and trained by Jonas Czernyson. The 1:52.1 effort is a lifetime mark for the filly trotter, and this win puts her season’s earnings at $207,527.
Fresh off a victory in the Kindergarten Series, Lilu Hanover claimed victory in the third division of the Bluegrass in 1:54.2.
Getting away on the lead, Lilu Hanover led Armatrading, That’s So Ironic, and Annaliina as she marched to the quarter. Passing that station in :29, Annaliina was sent two wide and began to brush by her competition. She took the lead from Lilu Hanover through a half of :57.2 (:28.2).
Around into the far turn, Armatrading pulled first over to challenge Annaliina for control. Lilu Hanover sat steady in the pocket through a 1:27.1 (:29.4) third-quarter. Midway into the stretch, Lilu Hanover pulled the pocket and managed to split Annaliina and Armatrading to get a nose in front and extend to a length in 1:54.2 (:27.1). Annaliina was second, Concentration was third and Armatrading was fourth.
A daughter of Andover Hall-Lady Luck Hanover-Donerail, she is owned by Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld, trained by Jimmy Takter and Scott Zeron guided her to victory. Paying $5.20 to win, the 1:54.2 mile is a lifetime mark for Lilu Hanover.
Bee The Queen capped the stakes action with a 1:54.1 victory over
Allerage Star and Crunchess Finale dueled for control through a :27.3 first quarter. Clearing the front into the backstretch, Allerage Star maintained her lead past the half in :55.2 (:27.4). Driver Brian Sears gave Bee The Queen the cue to go entering the far turn, flushed from fourth by Sarcy.
Within a matter of strides, Bee The Queen secured control. Sarcy stalked uncovered while Allerage Star was to her inside in the pocket. Bee The Queen trotted by three-quarters in 1:24.3 (:29.1).
Sarcy broke turning for home, and Allerage Star swung out of the pocket, but failed to rally by Bee The Queen. Wiclet Hanover from the back closed into second, as well as Kirsi Hanover into third as Bee The Queen was victorious in 1:54.1 (:29.3).
Owned by Alfred Ross and trained by George Ducharme, the Donato Hanover-Bee Line-Self Possessed filly paid $5.40 to win. Her 1:54.1 victory is a lifetime best, and her season’s earnings are now at $63,392.
Live racing resumes Friday, September 26 with the $287,600 Bluegrass for two-year-old filly pacers and the $393,000 Bluegrass for two-year-old colt trotters. With three divisions for the fillies and four for the colts, post time is set at 7:00pm EDT.