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Records in Indiana

July 12, 2004

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In the 10 days since Indiana Downs began its 84-day harness meet, track superintendent Jim White has converted the racing surface from one that required a four-second allowance during the the first qualifiers to a blazing-fast limestone oval. The track yielded records for both gaits Sunday as the state’s top older horses competed in the first leg of Indiana Sire Stakes action.

Big Boy Josh and Charlie Conrad were the first to redefine the standard, winning the $12,000 event for stallion and gelding trotters in 1:54.4. The 4-year-old Prince Pine gelding has set national season’s marks in the past, so the record time came as no surprise to his trainer and driver.

“I’ve been waiting for that,� Conrad said of his homebred’s performance. “I thought he had a big shot at winning.�

Cog Hill rewrote the record for pacers three races later with a dominant 1:50.4 performance against 11 other top stallions and geldings. The time eclipsed Street Sign’s 1:51 mile from last fall as the benchmark for the Indiana oval. Walter Haynes Jr. piloted the 4-year-old son of Electric Yankee to victory for trainer Alan Riegle.

“He’s a high-speed horse,� said Haynes. “I won two opens with him at Hoosier with 1:52 miles.�

Five of the 11 winners Sunday established new lifetime marks. On Saturday’s program eight of the 12 winners either equaled or exceeded their lifetime best performances.
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