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Muscle Massive flexes in 85th Hambletonian

August 07, 2010
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Muscle Massive and Ron Pierce made the most of their pocket trip, springing the upset in the $1.5 Million Hambletonian Saturday with a 1:51 performance. Sent off at 6-1, the Muscles Yankee-Graceful Touch colt reeled in favorite Lucky Chucky and John Campbell in the stretch, edging in front just before the wire to capture the 85th edition. Wishing Stone covered a considerable amount of ground for George Brennan to finish third.
 
Pierce wasted little time going to the front with the Jimmy Takter-trained colt, grabbing a spot behind Cassis and Tim Tetrick after lining up sixth. On The Tab, lining up seventh for Dan Dube, followed in third, with Lucky Chucky racing fourth. Cassis clicked off fractions of :27.1 and :54.3 on the lead before before Campbell began his charge with the favorite.
 
First up in second as the field passed three quarters (1:22.2), Lucky Chucky made the front as the field turned for home. Pierce pulled from the pylons and began measuring the favorite, gaining ground with every stride. The two colts battled through the stretch before Muscle Massive pushed ahead in the final strides. The winning time was the second fastest Hambletonian final in history behind Muscle Hill's 1:50.1 clocking in 2009.
 
Bred by Perretti Farms and owned by Brixton Medical AB, Order By Stable, Louie Camara, Al Libfeld, Marvin Katz and Sam Goldband, Muscle Massive knocked nearly three seconds off his previous best. Runner up in his Hambletonian elimination, the colt earned his sixth career victory, and pushed his career earnings to just shy of $1 million with $995,192. Muscle Massive paid $15.00, $5.80 and $5.00.
 
Saturday’s victory gave Pierce his third Hambletonian win. He reached the winner’s circle with American Winner in 1993 before scoring his second win with Donato Hanover in 2007. For Takter, who sent out 1997 winner Malabar Man, the victory was his second in harness racing’s most prestigious race.
 
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