Breakers ruin Maven's chances; Solvato wins
December 28, 2014
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Although she started on the wings of the gate in an 18-horse field and left strongly to get position in front, following favorites Texas Charm and Ready Cash, the American mare Maven finished out of the placings at Vincennes in Paris on Sunday as the American-blooded Solvato won the Prix du Bourgogne, a top prep race for the Prix d'Amerique. Solvato came from off the pace in the homestretch to win over Up And Quick and Tiego Etang, who finished in a dead heat for second. Roxane Grif took fourth.
"Maven was very good, she just had bad racing luck," Takter said in a text message to harnessracing.com. "I think she will be good here (for her upcoming starts, including the Prix d'Amerique."
Solvato, a 5-year-old son of Donato Hanover-Solveig, and thus a full brother to Trotter of the Year Shake It Cerry, was driven by Orjan Kihlstrom, who won the 2014 Prix d'Amerique with Maharajah and the recent Breeders Crown Open Trot with Commander Crowe. Veijo Heiskanen trains Solvato.
Maven was driven by her regular driver, Yannick Gingras, who was wearing trainer Jimmy Takter's colors instead of his own. Gingras put Maven in a spot that seemed safe in the large field which raced wheel-to-wheel for most of the 2,100-meter race (1 5/16ths miles). With two-time Prix d'Amerique winner Ready Cash on the lead and Texas Charm in the pocket, Maven was following two very good horses, but they could not sustain their efforts and caused her bad luck when they both broke stride. That allowed Solvato, who was safe farther back in the field, to rally on the outside to win.