Maverick wins debut at Red Mile in 1:57.2
August 17, 2020
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Maverick, who sold last fall as a yearling for a record $1.1 million, made his long-awaited debut a winning one Monday afternoon at The Red Mile. With Joe Bongiorno driving for trainer Tony Alagna, Maverick broke his maiden in 1:57.2.
A son of Father Patrick and a full brother to the 2019 Trotter of the Year Greenshoe, Maverick got away third for Bongiorno in the $5,000 conditioned event restricted to 2 year olds. After an opening quarter of :29.2, Bongiorno tipped Maverick to the outside to take control. Maverick reached the half in :58.3 and 1:28.4 before closing out the mile with a final quarter of :28.3. Tangled Love (Trace Tetrick) finished 1 ½ lengths behind Maverick, who was sent off the 2-1 second choice and returned $6.80. Immigrant Am S (Mattias Melander) was third and 4-5 betting favorite Argyle (Elliott Deaton) was fourth, beaten 3 ¼ lengths.
“I’m very happy wit his first start,” Alagna told harnessracing.com shortly afterward. “Maverick was comfortable and strong through the wire. Joe (Bongiorno) was very impressed with him.”
Maverick had made four qualifying starts prior to Monday’s pari-mutuel debut for owner Maverick Racing. After a third, second and sixth in his first three attempts, Maverick scored a 1:58 qualifying win July 31 at the Meadowlands in his last appearance on the track.
Brad Grant, part of the ownership group, watched the race from his Ontario home and told the U.S. Trotting Association's Ken Weingartner afterward, "You try to treat (Maverick’s first start) the same as every other race and every other race day. There’s no pressure on anybody, you just find out how he races.”