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2007 Hambletonian Results

The Hambletonian trophies
Date: 08/04/07

One of the most prestigious races on the harness racing calendar is the $1.5 million Hambletonian for 3-year-old trotters. A crowd of 26,115 was on hand at the Meadowlands Racetrack on Saturday afternoon for the 82nd renewal of this classic. A full field of ten lined up behind the starter, with Donato Hanover sent off as the even-money favorite over 3-1 second choice Pampered Princess. 9-2 Flirtin Man rounded out the top three on the toteboard.

Donato Hanover leads over Adrian Chip in the stretch.

5-1 fourth choice Adrian Chip took the lead soon after the start and led the field around the clubhouse turn through an initial quarter in a slow 28 2/5 with favorite Donato Hanover close behind in second. Entering the backstretch, driver Ron Pierce sent Donato Hanover to the lead, getting the half in 58 2/5, as Adrian Chip settled in second and Pampered Princess in stalking position third most of the way. Entering the homestretch, Donato Hanover continued to lead through 3/4 in 1:26. Donato Hanover cruised to an easy 1 1/4 length victory over Adrian Chip in 1:53 2/5. It was a long 4 1/2 lengths back to 30-1 shot Laddie in third, while Pampered Princess attempted to close late but broke stride at the 1/8 pole to finish seventh. Four horses finished the race off stride, and because sixth place finisher Too Salty violated the breaking rule, he was disqualified and placed behind Pampered Princess.

 #  Horse                Driver          Win  Place   Show
 2  Donato Hanover       Pierce         4.00   3.00   3.00
 3  Adrian Chip          Bergh                 5.00   4.40
 7  Laddie               MacDonell                    8.80

$2 Exacta  (2-3) paid               22.00
$1 Trifecta (2-3-7) paid           124.60
$0.10 Superfecta (2-3-7-9) paid    191.28
Winning Time:  1:53.4
Photo Finish Strip
Results Chart

Winning trainer Steve Elliott said, "Donato's a bigger version of Valley Victory and a whole lot smarter than Valley Victory was. That horse was so full of himself. Valley Victory was like a precocious kid. This horse is very professional about everything. It makes you feel pretty good when you get to the half like that. I said early this week that the trip would win the race and, being we got so slow to the half, we made it our trip. I was kind of hoping we'd be following somebody else, but it worked out for us today."

Winning driver Ron Pierce said, "The speed hasn't been holding out here all day, and everybody knew it, so everybody wanted to take a shot from the back. As slow as we were going, I even wanted to come from the back today. As slow as we were going, I had no choice but to go the front. I backed into everybody and I was surprised no one came sooner. I knew what I had. I did have to ask him, twice. Not that I had to, because he was going to win anyway, but I wanted to make sure he kept trotting to the wire."

Hambletonian Oaks

The filly counterpart of the Hambletonian is the $750,000 Hambletonian Oaks for 3-year-old trotting fillies. 3-5 favorite Possess The Magic led the field around the clubhouse turn and down the backstretch through fractions of 27 3/5, 56 1/5, and 1:25 while being stalked by 3-1 second choice Falls For You. However, through the stretch, the pace collapsed and the race set up for the closers. 11-1 Danae, who raced in eighth early, closed with a rush down the center of the track to win going away by 1 1/2 lengths over 82-1 longshot Resortful in 1:54 2/5. It was another 1/4 length back to 54-1 shot Sing Me To Sleep in third, while Possess The Magic faded to fifth.

Winning driver Tim Tetrick said, “George (trainer Teague) said to drive her like a two-year-old trotter, to protect her. I was back three fourth-over and thank god they did. He jumped off three or four on me. All the way to the wire." Tetrick and Teague teamed up to win the Meadowlands Pace last month as well.

 #  Horse                Driver          Win  Place   Show
 6  Danae                Tetrick       24.40  10.40   7.60
 8  Restortful           Gregory              45.00  19.00
 1  Sing Me To Sleepe    Doherty                     12.20

$2 Exacta  (6-8) paid            1084.60
$1 Trifecta (6-8-1) paid         3335.50
$0.10 Superfecta (6-8-1-9) paid  6826.35
Winning Time:  1:54.4 
Results Chart

More Hambletonian info:

Photos ©2007 Walter Pitcher

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