His tactic might have been different, but the result was still the same.
The usually speedy Opulent Yankee, who won this event one week ago on the lead, opted to sit a pocket trip Friday night (Jan. 26) in the featured $20,000 conditioned trot at the Meadowlands, and the 7-year-old gelded son of Muscles Yankee responded with an eighth of a mile to go, easing past Dover Downs invader Theresademoninme and holding on as that one came back on nearing the wire to win by a nose in 1:53.1 for the husband and wife Miller team of driver Andy and trainer Julie.
Theresademoninme left the gate hard and put Opulent Yankee in the two hole and was allowed to rate the middle half-mile in :58.2, which left him with plenty for the stretch drive.
But Opulent Yankee had a bit more in the latter stages, returning $4.00 to win as the post-time favorite for Jeff Gural’s Little E LLC, Arthur Geiger and David Stolz. He now has 20 wins in 83 lifetime starts and earnings just shy of $400,000.
THREES ARE WILD: Andy Miller, Tyler Buter and Vinny Ginsburg all recorded driving triples on the card. Buter pulled off a ‘natural hat trick’ by winning the fifth, sixth and seventh races. Those who bet a cold $1 Pick-Three on Buter were rewarded with a payoff of just over $3,100.
A LITTLE MORE: On or near the lead is where you wanted to be on this night. Three of the 13 races were won in wire-to-wire fashion while six pocket-sitters scored on the card. … The Pick-5, which had a total pool of $57,506, returned $12,220.05 for a 50-cent wager to those smart enough to have the winning combination of 2,9-5-2-7-1. … All-source wagering on the card totaled $2,362,813. … The Late 20-cent Jackpot Super High-Five failed to result in a single-ticket winner, which upped the carryover to $78,880.98. ... Racing resumes at the Big M Saturday at 6:35 p.m. (Meadowlands)