Miami Valley F&M Pace to Artie's Last Party
April 03, 2015
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Artie's Last Party became the 10th Fillies and Mares Open Pace winner in the first 14 weeks of the 2015 meet on Friday night at Miami Valley.
Driver Jeff Nisonger was content to skim the pylons near the rear of the field in the early going as favorites Shine N Shimmer and Betterluvnexttime duked it out through a sizzling :26.3 opening panel over a sloppy surface. Following a :55.4 half Nisonger eased the winning 6-year-old Artiscape mare into the outer flow following Rev Me Up, last week's winner. When the three-quarter clock flashed 1:25.2 the field fanned out for the stretch duel with closers getting the best of it. Artie's Last Party prevailed in the $17,050 feature race over Betit To Getit (Jason Brewer) and Ivory Collection (Jeremy Smith) in 1:55.2. Trainer Eddie Poling owns Artie's Last Party who has banked $30,000 in a dozen seasonal starts at Miami Valley.
The $10,000 championship leg of the Robert J. Brown Memorial Series was also contested on Friday with Mojita As (Jason Brewer) upsetting the field of green trotters in 1:59.1. Anette Lorentzon trains and co-owns the 4-year-old Muscle Mass mare with ACI Stuteri Ab.
Following a pair of runner-up finishes in the preliminary legs, Mojito As tracked mid-pack as Fly Away Bumblebee and E R Justiceforall played hardball on the engine. After a casual :29.2 opening quarter, the frontstepping pair went at it wheel-to-wheel through a :27.4 second panel to reach the half in :57.1. It wasn't until past the 1:28.3 third station clocking that the others began to close in on the speedsters with Mojito As strongest in the stretch to beat Held In Balance (Nisonger) with Fly Away Bumblebee (Kayne Kauffman) holding on for third. The ‘Skeeter' Brown series featured trotters who hadn't won two races or $15,000 lifetime as of the March 1 nomination date.
Racing resumes Saturday night at Miami Valley with a strong $18,150 Open Pace and two $10,000 divisions of the second leg of the Tom Tharps Memorial Series on tap. Post time is 6:30 p.m. On Easter Sunday, the Budweiser Clydesdales will be presented at Miami Valley from 1-3 p.m., just prior to a special matinee program. (Miami Valley)