After a first-over bid came up short in last week's Pennsylvania Sire Stakes final, Fashion Farms LLC's Patent Leather ($3.60) overcame the elements and proved dominant in the second of three $30,000 Liberty Bell splits for Pennsylvania-sired 3-year-old trotting colts and geldings on Sunday afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia.
Tim Tetrick floated the son of Broadway Hall forward from his outside post six to land in third behind early pacesetter Hill Street (Corey Callahan) and pocket sitter Stonebridge Gamble (Tyler Buter). After drafting patiently behind soft fractions of :29 and :57.2, Tetrick gave Patent Leather his first-over cue with three-eighths to go and the Jim Campbell trainee's response was instant. He powered past Hill Street at the 1:26.1 three-quarter mark and drew clear at once. He amassed 7 3/4 lengths of clearance over eventual runner-up Stonebridge Gamble at the end of the 1:54 mile, while Hill Street faded to finish third.
Patent Leather, who finished second to Tactical Landing in a Hambletonian elimination, earned the sixth win of his career. For Tetrick, the win capped a Liberty Bell double on the card, as he also teamed up with Tom Fanning trainee Mississippi Storm ($10.60) for a 1:54.3 victory over Scirocco Rob (Callahan) in the first trotting division.
Toast Of Lindy ($9.00, 1:56.1) rounded out the winners of the trotting divisions, taking advantage of an early break from twos-on favorite Lindy's Big Bang (Dexter Dunn) and edging away late in rein to Andy Miller for trainer Julie Miller.
Liberty Bell - 3-Year-Old Colt and Gelding Pace
Hayden Hanover ($2.20), runner-up to Dorsoduro Hanover in the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes final, won the last of four $30,000 Liberty Bell divisions for sophomore pacing colts and geldings convincingly, shrugging off a challenge from JK Wildfire (Dunn) en route to a 1:51.1 mile amid intensifying wind and rain. Andy Miller sent the son of Somebeachsomewhere to the lead at race's outset, and the pair controlled fractions of :27.2 and :56 before JK Wildfire emerged at their flank to press a :28 third sectional.
Despite his rival working to within a head a quarter from home, Hayden Hanover responded in kind, kicking on the afterburners at the eighth pole and edging away to a two-length win with plenty left in reserve. Daddyofemall (Mike Wilder) chased off cover to narrowly claim third.
Julie Miller trains four-time winner Hayden Hanover for the Pinske Stables, Andy Miller Stable, TLP Stable and Deo Volente Farms. For the Millers, Hayden Hanover capped a stakes double on the card.
Iluvtomakemoney ($51.00) opened the pacing proceedings with a major upset, circling four-wide from astern under Dexter Dunn to narrowly reach in 1:53.1 for trainer Mark Harder.
Messenger starter Winston ($10.60) followed in the second division by vaulting from the pocket to overtake odds-on pacesetter Terror Atthe Beach (George Napolitano Jr.) and stave off a late charge from Go West Go Fast (Matt Kakaley) by half a length in 1:53. Corey Callahan drove for trainer John Butenschoen.
After breaking in his two previous starts, Wheels On Fire ($10.80) and Matt Kakaley righted the ship in the third division with a 1:52.1 mile which saw him emerge late from the pocket to upend Macadoodledoo (Tetrick) by half a length. It was the seventh career win for the Ron Burke trainee.