Wolverines vs. Buckeyes Saturday at Northville
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A longtime mainstay at the former Raceway Park in Toledo, Ohio, will be resurrected on Saturday night when the $25,000 Wolverine-Buckeye Invitational Pace heads a 12-race card at Northville Downs.
Four pacers with Michigan connections will square off against a quartet of their Ohio-based rivals in the featured event, carded as Race 10 on the program. First post time is 7:30 p.m. Eastern.
Local Open contender Top Notch has been installed as the 2-1 morning line favorite from post three. Prior to a gutsy second-place finish out of post eight in last week's featured pace, the 5-year-old No Pan Intended gelding proved victorious in two straight top-level events. Darrell Wright will once again drive the 21-time winner for trainer Kristy Casagranda.
Top Notch's main competition will likely come from the Ohio-based Gorgeous View, the 5-2 second choice out of post six. The 5-year-old He's Gorgeous gelding invades from Northfield Park, where he has proven competitive in upper-level conditioned races and taken a seasonal mark of 1:52.1. Marc St. Louis Jr. will handle the driving duties for owner-trainer Jessica Roegner.
The fastest winning mile of the season belongs to Swapportunity, who represents Ohio from post two. The 7-year-old son of Mach Three won a mid-level conditioned race at Hollywood Dayton Raceway in 1:50.1 on Oct. 10, and he has amassed 29 victories throughout his career. Art McIlmurray will drive for trainer Ray Farmer.
Crusoe Hanover (Mark Headworth, post one), OGradys First Man (Don Harmon, post four) and Still Friskie (David Lake, post seven) are the three other Michigan entrants, while Dancin Fever (John Moody, post five) and The Book Of Life (Justin Belanger, post eight) complete the Ohio quartet.
Keeping with the Wolverine-Buckeye theme, fans on track will have the chance to win a pair of tickets to the Michigan-Ohio State football game at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Mich., on Nov. 30, in a "Survivor"-style handicapping contest. The contest, which is free to enter, requires fans to select the winner of each race on the live card. (Northville Downs)