Veteran reinsman Kyle Di Benedetto has driven plenty of winners in his career; 5,837 to be exact. And he's driven many that have returned a big mutuel payoffs. But when he won the third race at Monticello Raceway on Tuesday in 2:00.3 with Mia Casino from the seven hole, the 7-year-old Bettor's Delight pacing mare paid a whopping $282 for win.
Di Benedetto and Mia Casino started slowly and by the halfway point in 1:01 they still were at the end of the eight-horse field. As the field headed up the backside Di Benedetto moved his pacing mare into two-horse position and they began some forward movement.
By the third stanza they were still five lengths off the leader but in sixth position. As they rounded the final turn Di Benedetto moved Mia Casino down along the pylons and they used the passing lane to score an easy one-length victory over MoDonna and driver Jason Ryan.
"Starting in the seven hole is never an advantage but I thought if we got a little racing luck we could get some money, after all she won in (1):59 flat a few starts back,” Di Benedetto said after the race was completed. "She went a real good race today and finished strong.
"I can't tell you how surprised I was when I returned to the winners circle and saw she was 99-1 on the (tote) board, but that was only part of the story. She went off even longer (odds) because she paid $282 for win. She (Mia Casino) is biggest longshot I ever won with.”
It was the second victory of the season for Mia Casino who is owned and trained by John Stubits. (Monticello)