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Winless Wake Up Peter closing in on dubious record

November 18, 2013

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Even if Wake Up Peter fails to win a race this year, he still will have a memorable season when it comes to money.
Although winless in 17 races, Wake Up Peter has earned $304,291 – a total good enough for 18th place among all 3-year-old North American pacers in 2013. And if he ends the campaign without a victory, he will have earned more money than any winless 3-year-old pacer in history.
Colt pacer At Point Blank finished 1997 winless in 15 starts and banked $269,157, with nearly all his earnings coming in a second-place finish to Dream Away in the $1 million Meadowlands Pace. To date, no 3-year-old pacer has finished a year winless and earned more money.
"I like to break records,” trainer Tony Alagna said with a laugh about Wake Up Peter's season.
"Of course, I would like him to get a win,” he continued. "But as long as he's doing his work, I know what kind of horse he is. It hasn't changed my opinion of him in any way. For a $20,000 yearling, he's done OK for himself.”
Wake Up Peter's next chance for a win comes in Sunday's elimination for the Progress Pace for 3-year-old male pacers at Dover Downs in Delaware. Wake Up Peter and driver Scott Zeron will start from post 7 in the nine-horse field, from which the top eight will advance to the Dec. 1 final.
Vegas Vacation and Sunshine Beach, who finished 1-2 in the Matron Stakes at Dover on Nov. 17, will start the Progress Pace elimination from posts four and five, respectively. The field also includes Clint Westwood, Ronny Bugatti, Emeritus Maximus, Good Day Mate, Dedi's Dragon and Twilight Bonfire.
Wake Up Peter heads to the Progress off a third-place finish behind Captaintreacherous and Lucan Hanover in the $256,000 American-National Stakes on Nov. 9 at Balmoral Park in Chicago.
It was his first start since back-to-back sixth-place finishes in his elimination for the Breeders Crown at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs and a division of the Tattersalls Pace at Lexington's Red Mile in early October. Prior to those races, he finished third in his elimination of the Little Brown Jug and fifth in the same-day final.
"He was a little beat up heading to the Breeders Crown,” Alagna said. "After racing in the Jug two heats and two weeks in Lexington, he was a little tired. We gave him some time to freshen up and he came back and raced really good in the American-National. That's as good as he's been in a while.”
For his career, Wake Up Peter has won two of 26 starts and earned $594,521. He is a son of stallion Rocknroll Hanover out of the mare Lovely Lady, who is a half-sister to two-time Dan Patch Award-winner Worldly Beauty and Worldly Treasure.
Worldly Treasure is the dam of Captaintreacherous, who also is trained by Alagna and has earned $2 million this season, with 13 wins in 15 starts.
Wake Up Peter is owned by Wake Up Peter Partners, Brittany Farms, Andy Willinger and Eagles Soar Partners.
Alagna also trains Emeritus Maximus, who finished third in the Matron Stakes. He has won five of 23 starts and $229,439 for owners Cheap Speed Stable, Alan Alber and Eagles Soar Partners. Simon Allard will handle the driving for the sixth time in the colt's last eight races.
"He was tremendous in the Matron,” Alagna said. "Simon is getting to know him better and has confidence in the horse.” (HRC)
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