Posts drawn for Hambletonian Oaks elims
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Seventeen 3-year-oldstrotters entered Tuesday for the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks, the filly division of the Hambletonian.
Hambletonian Festival week kicks off on July 28 with two $50,000 eliminations to narrow the field to 10 for the $500,000 Oaks final on Hambletonian Day, Saturday, Aug. 4, at the Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J.
The recent battle between Dan Patch Award champion Manchego and rival Plunge Blue Chip in a division of the Del Miller Memorial at The Meadowlands resulted in a near dead-heat with Plunge Blue Chip emerging a nostril ahead in a world-record 1:49.4.
The two fillies were seeded into different Oaks eliminations, with Plunge Blue Chip receiving post eight in one and Manchego receiving post seven in the other. The other Del Miller Memorial winner, Phaetosive, will start inside of Plunge Blue Chip with post five in their elimination.
Manchego has lost just two of 17 career starts, breaking against males in the Beal Memorial final on June 30, and the aforementioned nose loss to Plunge Blue Chip. Her career earnings stand at $961,170 for trainer Jimmy Takter and owners Black Horse Racing, John Fielding and Herb Liverman.
Plunge Blue Chip, driven and trained by Ake Svanstedt, has a record of 5-3-2-0 in 2018 for an ownership comprised of Svanstedt Stable, Blue Chip Bloodstock, Zeron Racing Stables and Tomas Andersson. Her only losses this year have come in meetings with Atlanta, the top filly in the division, whose connections opted to race the males in the $1 million Hambletonian Open. The daughter of Muscle Mass-Dunk The Donut became the fastest 3-year-old of any gender with her recent 1:49.4 scor
For the first time this year Plunge Blue Chip will face Phaetosive, driven and trained by Trond Smedshammer and owned by Purple Haze Stables. The daughter of
Explosive Matter-Phaeton was a $65,000 purchase at the Standardbred Horse Sale in 2016 and has earned her connections $352,358 in just 10 lifetime starts.