Michigan Colt Stakes champions announced
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All eight Michigan Sires Stakes winners swept as champions of their respective divisions for the 2019 Michigan stakes season, as announced on Friday by the Michigan Harness Horsemen's Association.
Breeder Libby Myers accounted for four of the divisional champions: 2-year-old pacing filly Vicious Circle, 2-year-old trotting gelding Suzygottanewheart, 3-year-old trotting filly You Go Girlygirl, and 3-year-old pacing filly Lady Medusa.
Vicious Circle, whom Myers co-owns with trainer Kelly Goodwin, won 10 of her 11 stakes assignments this season and took her mark of 1:58.2 in the $11,687 Michigan Breeders Futurity at Northville Downs. The daughter of Manhardt and Vivacious Raider earned $54,040 through the Michigan stakes season, the most of any 2 or 3 year old in action on the Wolverine State circuit.
Suzygottanewheart won five of 10 starts to take top honors among juvenile male trotters for owner-trainer John Goodyear. Carl Putnam Jr. was the primary driver of the Colie's-Abs Super Hall gelding, and they teamed up for a 2:06.4 mark at Northville in the Great Lakes Stakes.
Putnam was also the primary driver of 3-year-old trotting filly You Go Girlygirl, who won four of nine Michigan stakes assignments and took a mark of 2:06.1 at Fowlerville for top seasonal honors in her division. Kent Hess trains the daughter of Colie's for Marjorie Deshetsky.
Lady Medusa rounds out the quartet of champions bred by Myers, having won three of her nine Michigan stakes starts this season and finishing second in three others. Her fastest Michigan mile was a 1:57.3 effort at Northville in the Breeders Futurity, but she since paced 1:54.3 in defeat at Harrah's Hoosier Park. When based in Michigan, Larry Lee Smith drove and Al Tomlinson trained the 3-year-old Manhardt filly for owner Trevor LaFountain.
Matty's Legacy, tops among 3-year-old male pacers, won half of his 10 Michigan starts, won the Michigan Sire Stakes at Northville in 1:58.4, and captured the Great Lakes Stakes by a resounding 45-length margin before being sold to connections in Massachusetts in October. Through the summer stakes campaign, Rick Dobson drove the Alicia Case-bred son of Keystone Rodeo for owner-trainer Monica Krist.
Gemini Eddie won seven of 11 stakes in Michigan this season to take the title among sophomore male trotters. Art McIlmurray was the primary driver of the son of Southwind Russet, who took a 2:00.2 mark in a Northville overnight on Nov. 1, for trainer Kevin St. Charles, owner ECS Racing LLC, and breeder Henry Detweiler.
Two-year-old trotting filly Come On Loretta (Crest-Sher To Be) and freshman pacing colt Gabe The Babe (Manhardt-Bad Noble) each won eight of 11 races during the Colt Stakes season to claim their respective divisional honors. Come On Loretta, who is owned by trainer-driver-breeder Tim Roach in partnership with Larry Elvin, took her 2:05.3 mark at Northville by way of a 33 1/2-length win in the Great Lakes Stakes. Oscar Sievert homebred Gabe The Babe's fastest win came in 1:59.3 in the Michigan Sires Stakes, and Chuck Taylor served as his primary driver for trainer Jeff Rowley.
The eight Michigan divisional champions and their connections will be recognized at the Michigan Harness Horsemen's Association's annual banquet and awards ceremony, scheduled to take place on Jan. 25, 2020, at the Johnson Center on the campus of Cleary University in Howell, Mich. (MHHA)