East Rutherford, NJ — Lock Down Lindy and Spirit To Win captured their respective $35,000 Hambletonian Oaks eliminations, the filly counterpart to the Hambletonian, for 3-year-old filly trotters on Saturday night (Aug. 1) at Meadowlands Racetrack.
Both the Hambletonian and Hambletonian Oaks will be shown live on CBS Sports Network next Saturday (Aug. 8) from 4-5:30 p.m. Post positions will be drawn on Monday afternoon at a press conference at the track. The winner of each Oaks elimination will draw for posts one through five.
|Lock Down Lindy won the first of two Hambletonian Oaks eliminations in 1:51.4.|
Lock Down Lindy (Tim Tetrick) locked in her spot in the final of the $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks with a two length win in 1:51.4 in the first of two elimination races.
Content to let Bright Baby Blues (David Miller) and then Gatka Hanover (Yannick Gingras) set the early pace, with Gatka Hanover hitting the quarter in :27.2 and the half in :55.1, Lock Down Lindy began her sprint to the front of the pack just past the half.
The daughter of Lucky Chucky-Love Lockdown grabbed the lead with authority and held it through the 1:23.2 three-quarters. She trotted strong to the wire with all others giving futile chase, though Wild Honey (Jimmy Takter) put on a rally late in the race to be second, with Bright Baby Blues behind her. Also advancing to the Oaks final were fourth place finisher Lady Winona and fifth place Smokinmombo.
Lock Down Lindy is trained by Tony Alagna and owned by Mystical Marker Farms, Crawford Partners, Joe Sbrocco and In the Gym Partners. She has four wins now in 17 lifetime starts, with earnings of $184,629.
“I had a lot of confidence in this mare and it hasn’t really worked out, a lot of bad spots and some mistakes here and there, mostly mine,” said winning driver Tim Tetrick.
“She showed tonight the talent she does have. I was hoping I could follow Takter’s mare (Wild Honey) all the way up there but somehow she got to drop in the three hole. I just went up for the lead and after that, it was over. Anytime you get to compete in these races (Hambletonian and Oaks) is awesome, let alone win them and I’ve gotten to drive some great horses that put me in the winner’s circle in those races.
“It’s a wide open race, the way she raced in here tonight, they’re definitely going to be looking for her. She won’t be dismissed quite as much, she’s always had the talent, she just hasn’t always been able to put it together.”
|Spirit To Win and Brett Miller won the second Oaks elimination in 1:52.2.|
Spirit To Win turned on the afterburners in the last sixteenth of a mile, with driver Brett Miller’s hands in his lap all the way to the finish line in 1:52.2 to win the second Hambletonian Oaks elimination. The margin of victory was two lengths.
Spirit To Win is trained by Dustin Jones and is owned by Frederick Hertrich III and Noblock Racing Stable. The win was her fifth in just 11 lifetime starts, lifting her career bankroll to $185,630.
Spirit To Win flirted with the lead off the starting gate, but Rules Of The Road (Corey Callahan) got to the quarter first in :28 before Livininthefastlane (Andy Miller) took over that spot with a quick move to the top. They held that spot to the :56.2 half with Rules Of The Road tucked in behind.
Spirit To Win, meanwhile, was working her way to the top on the outside, all the way to the top of the stretch. After idling on the outside alongside leader Livininthefastlane for a few strides at the 1:24.4 three-quarters, Miller gave the daughter of Cantab Hall-Celebrity Spirit the mildest of urging and off she went to the top for the win.
Livininthefastlane was second and Sarcy (Johnny Takter) was third. Also earning spots in the final were fourth place finisher Rules Of The Road and fifth place finisher Speak To Me (Scott Zeron).
“After last week (when she beat Mission Brief by a nose in the Del Miller Memorial), I had a lot of confidence in her,” said Brett Miller. “When I landed where I landed (sixth at the quarter), honestly, it didn’t bother me. The way she felt, this filly, she acts like one of those horses who gives 100 percent and won’t stop until she gets by them. There’s a lot of nice fillies in here, she’s going to have to show up next week and do her best.”