Julie Miller hopes that if anyone can win Saturday's $462,000 William Wellwood Memorial for 2-year-old trotters at Mohawk Racetrack, My Man Can.
My Man Can notched his first win last weekend by defeating Ergo Hanover by 2 3/4 lengths in 1:57.1 in his Wellwood elimination. My Man Can finished second in his two previous starts--a Pennsylvania Sire Stakes division on Aug. 23 at Harrah's Philadelphia and a division of the Champlain Stakes on Aug. 31 at Mohawk--and has been worse than third only once in six career races.
"We were kind of pointing him to this and hopefully he's coming into his own,” Miller said about the colt's improvement heading into the Wellwood final. "That was the plan. That was a good race last week; we were pretty happy with him. Everything went right with the trip and he got up for the win.”
My Man Can is a son of Cantab Hall out of the mare Woman Of Strength. He was purchased for $32,000 at the Lexington Selected Sale and is a half brother to Whit, who was second to Manofmanymissions in last season's New Jersey Sire Stakes championship for 3-year-old male trotters. He has earned $94,302 for owners Andy Miller Stable, Albert Delia Jr. and Mark Moger.
"We just liked how he looked and he was in our price range and we went for it,” Julie Miller said. "He showed us enough talent training down that we did put him in some of the open (stakes) events. And I'm glad we did seeing how we're going to the Wellwood on Saturday. I'm pretty excited.”
A foot injury slowed My Man Can's development as he was preparing for the campaign, but the colt has made steady progress since then.
"He didn't really do anything wrong,” Miller said. "He ended up having a foot issue early in the year and we kind of had to baby him along there. We didn't want to rush him with that. We wanted to give it time to heal properly.
"He's really a big horse, but he's just great to be around on and off the track.”
Also winning his Wellwood elimination last weekend was Wheeling N Dealin, who captured his division by two lengths over Murmur Hanover in 1:56.4. Trained by Dustin Jones and driven by Sylvain Filion, Wheeling N Dealin is 6-for-6 this year, including a 1:55 victory in a Champlain split.
Wheeling N Dealin is also a son of Cantab Hall, out of the stakes-winning mare Quick Credit.
"I'd like to get a two-hole trip behind (Wheeling N Dealin) and then pop up and win it,” Miller said with a laugh about the Wellwood final. "That would be my dream trip. I'm sure nine other people have their dream trip too.
"I know we have gate speed and I know Andy can also take him back. I'm just looking for a good race and hopefully we can get some money.” (HRC)