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Top pacing mare to be bred

December 08, 2006
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Three-time divisional champion Loyal Opposition, the second richest pacing mare of all time, has been retired after being purchased for an undisclosed price by Diamond Creek Farm in Kentucky. The 6-year-old daughter of Cole Muffler retires with 56 wins in 98 starts and $2,861,294 in earnings.

“My father (Chris) and I are extremely proud to have been able to acquire a mare of the ability and recognition as Loyal Opposition,” said Diamond Creek owner Adam Bowden. “She is certainly one of the greatest pacing mares of the modern era and we couldn’t be happier with the opportunity to add her to our broodmare band. The plans are to breed her to Western Hanover in the coming season.”

Loyal Opposition, the richest Illinois-bred Standardbred of all time, won 12 of 25 starts this past year, including the Strada Memorial at the Meadowlands and the Ann Vonian and Fairy Godmother at Balmoral Park. She also had second-place finishes in the Cape & Cutter final and the Overbid final, while her third-place effort in the Allerage Farm Series final at The Red Mile Oct. 7 catapulted her past Bunny Lake into second on the all-time earnings list of pacing mares behind only the $3.7 million-winning Eternal Camnation.

Loyal Opposition was voted the 2002 Two-Year-Old Filly Pacer of the Year, and also added Dan Patch Award divisional honors as an older mare in 2004 and 2005. Her career-best effort of 1:48.4 came while winning the 2004 Lady Liberty at the Meadowlands. She won the 2005 Breeders Crown at Mohawk in 1:51, a parked-out effort trainer Erv Miller told harnessracing.com he believes was her best-ever race.

“That Breeders Crown was just a phenomenal race,” said Miller, who trained the Cottonwood Farm-bred mare for owner Daniel Waxman since May 2004 after an ownership transfer from Waxman’s father, Bob. “She is just a phenomenal mare. She was real easy to get along with and keep going all the time. She is the best horse I ever had.”

A retirement ceremony is planned for Balmoral Park Saturday night. Miller will take Loyal Opposition on the track following the sixth race and then bring her into the winner’s circle where her shoes will be pulled for the final time.
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