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Sunday, February 7, 2016


 by john manzi for NAADA

Showing that last year was no fluke the talented Hannah Miller was again in the winner’s circle last night (Feb. 6) at Yonkers Raceway after she reined Jacks To Open to his second consecutive victory in their division of the NAADA Trotting Series. Robert Kenney won the other split with Rev Up The Spice.

But once again all eyes were on “Hurricane Hannah” as she seems to be picking up where she left off last season, a year in which she won 32 races and was named USHWA’s National Amateur Driver of the Year. She’ll receive that award at the upcoming USHWA National Awards Banquet slated in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. on Sunday night, March 6.

Teamed for the second time this season with her venerable trotter, Jacks To Open, Miller and her
 charge got away softly from the pole position and cut easy early fractions.

 As they reached the half way point Paul Minore moved Wygant Prince out to challenge and a speed duel ensued toward the three quarters where they trotted head to head through a :28.4 stanza. In the lane Wygant Prince tired which allowed Fox Valley Steffen and Dr. John Kokinos, who were enjoying a two-hole covered trip, to move off the pylons and mount a formidable challenge toward paydirt. But Jacks To Open showed his class and held his competitor at bay to score a neck triumph in 2:00 flat. Nautilus De Vie finished third for Dave Yarock.

When asked about Jacks To Open’s performance Miller said via email, “Jack was super this
week and was able to get to the front a little easier than usual. And although we had a stiff challenge in the stretch Jack was strong right through the wire.”
Ms. Miller shares ownership of the winner with trainer Nick Surick.

In his division Robert Kenney took advantage of a two-hole trip behind the pacesetter, AJ Destiny (Bob Hechkoff) and rallied in the lane to score a length victory in 2:02.2. Tony Verruso took home the show dough with Sam’s Honeybee.

For Kenney, who has not driven more than seven times in any of his amateur career seasons  and a total of just 33 since it began in 2000, his victory tonight marked his fourth consecutive over the last two years in which he drove only three times—all winners- in 2015.

Rev Up The Spice is owned by Di Stefano and Sons Stable and trained by John Di Stefano.

Both NAADA trots-each for a $6000 purse- were raced as non-wagering events and presented before the betting card got underway that evening