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Muscles flexed in Woodruff

May 23, 2004

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Muscles Marinara completed his sweep of the Hiram Woodruff Series at the Meadowlands Sunday afternoon (May 23), closing out his three-start trifecta with a career-best 1:53.2 victory in the $52,750 final.

With Brian Sears in the sulky for trainer Trond Smedshammer, Muscles Marinara took control at the half and trotted to an easy 3 1/2-length decision over Double Eagle (John Campbell). Donnegal (Yannick Gingras) was third, with Istanbul (Ron Pierce), who had won his two Woodruff elims, six lengths behind in fourth.

"The horse was the best," said Sears afterward. "It was pretty easy for him today. He is just real good."

A 4-year-old gelded son of Muscles Yankee, Muscles Marinar is owned by The Gandolfo Stable and Lenny Zelin. The win was his sixth of the year in 14 starts, pushing his career earnings to $146,080.

Trainer Smedshammer has now won three Sunday afternoon trotting series finals this year at the Meadowlands. He captured the $134,400 Su Mac Lad with HP Paque on April 4 and the $49,400 Father Foley Memorial with Greensview Hanover on May 3. Smedshammer drove HP Paque and turned over the lines to Sears behind Greensview Hanover.
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