Always B Miki, JK She'salady win qualifiers
September 17, 2015
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JK She'salady, the 2014 Horse of the Year, and Always B Miki, the runner-up in last year's Meadowlands Pace, won qualifiers at Pocono on Thursday morning. JK She'salady won her race in 1:53.3 while Always B Miki was an effortless 1:50.1 winner.
JK She'salady was making her first start behind the gate since finishing fifth in an elimination for the James Lynch Memorial at Pocono on June 27. She finished a lackluster fifth in that race, which prompted trainer Nancy Johansson to take the Art Major-sired filly to Cornell University to have her examined. Veterinarians found the filly had a deep lung infection and prescribed treatment and time off from racing.
With regular driver Tim Tetrick in the sulky, JK She'salady was sent to the lead in the qualifier and carved out fractions of :28.2, :57 (:28.3) and 1:25.3 (:28.3 third panel) before finishing with a :28 quarter.
Always B Miki was driven by trainer Jimmy Takter, who also now shares an interest in the 4-year-old stallion by Always A Virgin. Takter sent "Miki" to the front and without visible exertion, the stallion paced to a 15 1/4-length score over Jones Beach with fractions of :28, :55.3 (:27.3 second quarter) and 1:22.3 (:27 third panel), and a :27.3 last quarter.
"He's a scary good horse," said Takter of Always B Miki, who he began training this year, after the horse suffered a broken P-3 bone just prior to last fall's Breeders Crown 3-Year-Old Colt Pace. "I plan to qualify him again next week, in Lexington, and we'll go from there. I'm taking it one week at a time with him."
Last November, Always B Miki underwent surgery for a P-1 (long pastern) fracture of his left hind. Dr. Patty Hogan performed the surgery. "Miki" had exhibited lameness while in the post parade and scoring down before the race. Dr. Hogan used four screws to repair the fracture.
After 30 days of stall rest and 30 days of hand walking, Takter took over training Always B Miki. The horse had trained down and went a fast mile at the Meadowlands when he suffered another setback in May, breaking his right hind pastern. Dr. Hogan again was able to surgically repair the damage and the horse was given time off again, making his first return behind the gate in the Pocono qualifier.--harnessracing.com