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Friday, June 30, 2017

Miriam Toland and Fleetwood Hall shocks field at Vernon Downs (6/29).

Miriam Toland the 72-year-old owner, trainer, and driver took command of Fleetwood Hall ($39.80) to go from last to first at Vernon Downs Thursday night. 

The 7-year-old Deweycheatumnhow gelding found himself already behind by 12 lengths after the first quarter.  ABC Crown ((Joe Nassimos) would charge out to the early lead and set the early fractions of :27.0, :56.3, 1:26.3.  The African (John MacDonald) rode in the pocket and looked poised to takeover after the top of the stretch and would take a short lead in deep stretch.  Then came the late charge by Fleetwood Hall who looked like a speeding bullet in deep stretch to go by and just nip The African (second) at the wire in 1:57.0.  ABC Crown held on for third.  For Toland it was her first win this season at Vernon Downs, holding the reins like a thirty year-old, she proudly strolled Fleetwood Hall into the winners circle.  Is harness driving a young mans sport?  Not on this night!

Earlier in the night Special Princess (John MacDonald) would win in her debut.  The 2-year-old Art Major filly charged to the front right out of the gate.  Owned by 4 for 3 Stable and trained by Donna Reidel, Special Princess ($11.40), would put up fractions of :28.1, :59, 1:27.1, 1:56.0 while going gate-to-wire.   Hayleighs Hat (Ben McNeil) would be second best and Bonita Island (Truman Gale) would finish third.

Truman Gale would get a couple winners on this night.  Gale would win race number one with Tea Party Tempest ($12.40) winning in 1:54.1.  Gale would capture the last race of the night with Southwind Vixon ($6.80) in 1:55.0

There will be no racing Friday night (6/30) because of a 38 Special concert at Vernon Downs.  The miracle mile will return to live action on Saturday (7-1) with a nine race card starting at 6:45 p.m.

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