Brett Miller has knocked on the door when it comes to winning a major stakes race. Now he hopes he can break through.
Miller, who has won more than 6,600 times in his harness racing career, will drive Tellitlikeitis in Saturday's eliminations for the Meadowlands Pace.
Tellitlikeitis, who finished second to JK Endofanera in last month's North America Cup final, is the 8-5 morning line favorite in the second of two elimination divisions. JK Endofanera is the 6-5 choice in the other elim. The top five horses from each division advance to the Meadowlands Pace final on July 12 at Meadowlands Racetrack.
"That would be something else,” Miller said about winning the Meadowlands Pace. "I've never won a big, big race. I can't wait for it. We're not going in there hoping something happens. This is a real horse.
"I've never won a Breeders Crown, or Meadowlands Pace, or Hambletonian or (Little Brown) Jug. That was one of the reasons why I moved out here. I felt being at The Meadows, or being in Ohio, you're so far away from the East Coast trainers and horses that it's hard to pick up those big stakes drives. At least it was for me. I felt like I needed to be out here.
"Now that I'm here, I'm glad that I did come out here because I feel that's what has gotten me some of these good drives.”
A native of Ohio, Miller this season has raced primarily at The Meadows, Harrah's Philadelphia, Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs, and the Meadowlands. He ranks among the top six drivers in wins at The Meadows, Harrah's Philadelphia, and Pocono Downs.
"When I made the move out here, I definitely didn't expect things to go this good,” Miller said. "I feel like I've gotten lucky; I've been in the right place at the right time and picked up some really good horses to drive. I just feel very fortunate right now.”
Miller has twice finished second in the North America Cup, this year with Tellitlikeitis and in 2010 with We Will See. He finished second in last year's Canadian Pacing Derby with Clear Vision.
Among his big wins so far are two victories with Rocklamation in the Milton Stakes, the 2013 Quillen Memorial with Clear Vision and numerous Pennsylvania and Ohio sire stakes championships.
Tellitlikeitis, trained by Jimmy Takter, has won two of three races this year and earned $262,931. The son of 2009 Meadowlands Pace champion Well Said, out of the millionaire Kikikatie, was bred by owner Lothlorien stable.
In his Meadowlands Pace elimination, Tellitlikeitis will start from post seven. To his inside will be Let's Drink On It, Sometimes Said, Allstar Partner, Jet Airway, Luck Be Withyou, and Somestarsomewhere. To his outside in the nine-horse field are Beat The Drum and He's Watching.
"I would have rather drawn in a little closer than the seven hole, but the horse has got gate speed,” Miller said. "You can pretty much do whatever you want with him. I don't look for the seven hole to be a problem.
"I'm anxious to race him because I talked to Jimmy Takter the other day and he said (Tellitlikeitis) trained real good and is feeling good. He feels like the colt races best the fresher he keeps him, not racing him every week.” (HRC)