Muscle Hill wins 10th straight in NJSS final
June 13, 2009
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Despite missing the biggest check of the night with Dial Or Nodial in the New Jersey Classic, driver Brian Sears reined in a pair of stakes winners for a total of six on the Saturday night card at the Meadowlands.
Sears rallied Showherthemoney ($6.40) off a second-tier trip to take the $175,000 SBOA/Thomas D’Altrui Miss New Jersey for fillies in 1:50.4. McGibson benefited from a pocket trip behind the leader Dawn’s Legacy to finish second, while Scarlet McZara nabbed the show spot in the fifth race tilt.
Showherthemoney improved her record to five wins in 15 career starts, while trainer Bjorn “Bernie” Noren, a pupil of trotting master Jimmy Takter, scored his first stakes trophy just six months after opening his own stable. Bulletproof Enterprises of Boca Raton, Fla. owns the regally bred daughter of Cam’s Card Shark-Stienam’s Place.
“We were fortunate with the draw (post three) and the trip, but Bernie had her really sharp tonight and it showed,” Sears said. “There were pretty good numbers (fractions on the board), and she was pretty relaxed keeping up. When I got ready to call on her, I knew that we had a lot of pace and she just kicked right in.”
Sears steered Muscle Hill, the early favorite for the Hambletonian, to his 10th straight win in the $200,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes final for 3-year-old trotting colts and geldings.
Muscle Hill wasted no time taking the lead from stablemate My Back Pages at the midpoint of the backstretch and drew clear to take the third race on the card in 1:53.3. The Chancellor finished four lengths behind in second and My Back Pages was third.
“The horse had great manners and it was a pretty easy trip,” Sears said. “He just seems like he’s a little straighter this year and he’s obviously got a little more stamina.”
It was the second sire stakes title for the Greg Peck trainee, who won the NJSS championship at two.
“He has no stakes race until the Stanley Dancer,” Peck said of Muscle Hill’s upcoming schedule. “There’s five weeks now (before the Hambletonian elims), but we’ll make sure to get something. He’s like a Thoroughbred, he can seem to come in off a layoff and that’s where we’re very fortunate. He’s an athlete.”
The son of Muscles Yankee-Yankee Blondie increased his career earnings to $944,751 for owners Jerry Silva, TLP Stable, Southwind Farm, and Muscle Hill Racing. During his champion freshman season, Muscle Hill won $817,301 and eight of nine starts, including the Breeders Crown in a world record 1:53.3 and Peter Haughton Memorial.
In the first of the evening’s stakes events, Margarita Momma charged down the stretch to take the $200,000 New Jersey Sire Stakes final for 3-year-old trotting fillies.
Driver George Brennan and Margarita Momma rallied three wide around the far turn and split horses to take the night’s second race in 1:55.3. The pacesetting Gabby’s Dream was a neck behind in second and I Wanted Wings finished third.
The daughter of Yankee Glide-Sheena Hall is two for two in 2009 and boosted her career earnings to $454,908. Jan Johnson trains and co-owns Margarita Momma with Jorgen Jahre, Jr. (Meadowlands)