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Sunday, October 30, 2016

Meadowlands Racing Recap - Saturday, October 29, 2016

by James Witherite, Meadowlands racing media

East Rutherford, N.J. -- A trio of Breeders Crown records were broken or tied on Saturday (October 29) evening at The Meadowlands, highlighted by Racing Hill’s 1:48 effort in the $500,000 Crown for 3-year-old pacing colts and geldings.

Brett Miller drove the son of Roll With Joe to his 12th seasonal victory, shaving three-fifths of a second off the previous divisional record held by Somebeachsomewhere. Tony Alagna trains Racing Hill, who also won the Messenger and Adios this year, for owner-breeder Tom Hill.

Tim Tetrick turned in a pair of stakes records as part of a natural hat trick on the night, teaming up with Linda Toscano trainee Walner for a 1:53 win in the $600,000 Crown for 2-year-old trotting colts and geldings, and Jimmy Takter trainee Bar Hopping for a record-tying 1:54.1 mile in the $500,000 event for 3-year-old trotting colts and geldings.

A pair of drivers earned their first Breeders Crown titles, both in upset fashion. Marcus Miller took the 2-year-old filly pace with 17-1 shot Someomensomewhere, while Scott Zeron teamed up with 12-1 outsider Call Me Queen Be in the 3-year-old filly pace.

Other Crown winners on the night were Ariana G (2-year-old filly trot, Gingras/Takter), Huntsville (2-year-old colt pace, Tetrick/Schnittker), and Broadway Donna (3-year-old filly trot, D. Miller/Campbell).

In all, the weekend’s 12 Breeders Crown events attracted a total of $3,954,042, with total all-sources handle for the weekend coming in at $6,409,792.

Pacing divisions of the final Kindergarten Classic series preliminary highlighted the Saturday undercard, each going for $10,000. Eleven 2-year-old pacing colts and geldings contested the opener, and Chip Walther ($3.60) lived up to his odds-on billing. The son of Art Major and Bittorsweet Terror sustained a first-over bid for over half a mile to barely collar Air Strike (David Miller) in 1:51.2, earning a third consecutive victory in the act. Marcus Miller handled the driving duties for trainer Erv Miller.

In the filly division, carded as the night’s finale, Gurl Band K ($6.60) evaded her nine rivals for a 1:52.3 score. Matt Kakaley drove the daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven and Native Flower for owner Robert Key and trainer Andrew Harris.

Live racing returns to the Big M on Friday (November 4) evening, with post time slated for 7:15 p.m. Eastern.