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Graves skates to PPK win

February 18, 2007

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Hilliard Graves, who enjoyed an 11-year career as a right wing in the NHL and AHL, drove his first winner of the 2007 season at Pompano Park on Saturday when guiding Yankee Leader to victory in the evening’s ninth event in 1:55.2. Graves also owns the 9-year-old son of Artsplace.

Graves began his hockey career in 1970 with the Providence Reds of the American Hockey League, and had stints with the California Golden Seals, Atlanta Flames, Vancouver Canucks, and Winnipeg Jets of the NHL. Graves’ final season on the ice came in 1980 when he played 35 games for the Jets, tallying one goal with five assists.

I Can Only Imagine extended his winning streak to three on Saturday when coasting to victory in the $10,000 Open Handicap Pace.

Driven by Brett Miller for trainer Tom Harmer and owner Michael Polansky of Loudonville, N.Y., I Can Only Imagine swept to the front in the opening quarter mile and took the field through fractions of :28, :56.4, and 1:24.4 before cruising to a 1 ¾-length victory in 1:52.3.

The 5-year-old son of Cole Muffler has won three of his last four starts, and began his current skein of victories with a triumph on Jan. 27 where he paced the mile in 1:50, the third fastest clocking in the 43-year history of Pompano Park. (Pompano Park)
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