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International Trot Set For Saturday

Published: October 11, 2016 3:33 pm ET

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Resolve has drawn Post 2 in a field of 10 for Saturday’s $1 million Yonkers International Trot. The son of Muscle Hill has been installed as the 3-1 morning line favourite in the one and a quarter-mile invitational event at Yonkers Raceway.

Hannelore Hanover, the lone mare in the race, drew Post 1 and was made the 4-1 second choice.

The International Trot was first contested in 1959 and held through 1995. The event was resurrected last year by Yonkers Raceway President and CEO Tim Rooney. It will be Race 6 on a 13-race card this Saturday at Yonkers. First-race post time will be 1:10 p.m. (EDT) and the International Trot is expected to head to post at 3:20 p.m.

Resolve and Hannelore Hanover are among three U.S. representatives in the International Trot, along with Obrigado, who drew Post 6 and was made 6-1 on the morning line.

“I’m satisfied with the draw,” said Swedish-born Ake Svanstedt, who is now based in the U.S. and trains and drives Resolve for owner Hans Enggren of Pennsylvania. “I know a lot of the horses and have seen them race. I’ve raced against a couple of them, too. The drivers are good drivers. They drive differently. It’s going to be a European (style) race, not American.”

Resolve, a five-year-old horse, has won four of 10 races this year and earned $775,953. He heads to the International Trot off a win in the Maple Leaf Trot on September 17 at Mohawk Racetrack. Earlier this season, he finished second to Nuncio in the Elitlopp at Sweden’s Solvalla Raceway.

“He is doing good,” Svanstedt said. “He is doing good the whole year. It’s been almost four weeks since he raced the last time, but he trained good. He looks good. He’s excited to race when he has a long time between the races. He wants to race. He’s sharp.”

Returning from last year’s International Trot are Norway’s BBS Sugarlight, Italy’s Oasis Bi, and Sweden’s On Track Piraten. Oasis Bi, who finished fourth in last year’s edition of the race, drew Post 5 and was established at 5-1. BBS Sugarlight was fifth and On Track Piraten finished seventh.

Completing the field are Sweden’s Explosive De Vie, Canada’s Flanagan Memory, Finland’s Jonesy, and Denmark’s Tano Bork.

Norway’s Papagayo E won the 2015 race, but is unable to return this year because of injury.

Hannelore Hanover will try to join a list of eight mares to win the International Trot. She has 15 wins and two seconds in 17 starts this season, and has won 24 of her 38 career starts for trainer Ron Burke, who co-owns the four-year-old with the partnership of Mark Weaver and Mike Bruscemi, Frank Baldachino and J&T Silva Stables.

The mare heads to the International Trot off a win over the boys in the Centaur Trotting Classic on September 24 at Hoosier Park. She finished second to Resolve in the Maple Leaf Trot.

“I was open-minded about (posts) one through five, and maybe nine or 10, but drawing the rail in this race is definitely a big edge for her,” Hannelore Hanover’s driver, Yannick Gingras, said, adding with a laugh, “I told Ake that he better buckle up his chinstrap.

“She’s really sharp. She’s been racing really good. She’s had a three-week break now, which I think is a great thing for her. She’d been racing really hard, shipping all over North America. I think the three weeks will help her and I’m sure Ronnie will have her trained up. I know she’s ready to rock.”

This will be Hannelore Hanover’s first race on a half-mile track.

“I don’t think it’s an issue,” Gingras said. “She’s a really square-gaited mare. I don’t think it’s any problem at all in my mind.”

Yonkers International Trot

(PP – Horse – Driver – Trainer – Line)
1 – Hannelore Hanover – Yannick Gingras – Ron Burke – 4/1
2 – Resolve – Ake Svanstedt – Ake Svanstedt – 3/1
3 – Jonesy – Tuomas Korvenoja – Tuomas Korvenoja – 15/1
4 – Flanagan Memory – Brian Sears – Rene Dion – 6/1
5 – Oasis Bi – Erik Adielsson – Stefan Pettersson – 5/1
6 – Obrigado – Mark MacDonald – Paul Kelley – 6/1
7 – BBS Sugarlight – Vidar Hop – Fredrik Solberg – 6/1
8 – On Track Piraten – Orjan Kihlstrom – Hans Stromberg – 10/1
9 – Tano Bork – John Campbell –Christian Lindhardt – 20/1
10 – Explosive De Vie – Kevin Oscarsson – Jim Oscarsson – 12/1

Tano Bork and Explosive De Vie will start in the second tier.

It’s downright blasphemous and borderline illegal to use the terms ‘Wiggle It Jiggleit’ and ‘undercard’ in the same sentence.

However, such is life in the big city, where Wiggle It Jiggleit returns this Saturday afternoon (Oct. 15th). Harness racing’s richest horse ($1,597,162) of 2016 is going to have to work to add to that number, as the post position gods banished him behind the eight-ball for Yonkers Raceway’s $250,000 Invitational Pace.

The quarter-million-dollar number goes as the 10th of 13 races Saturday afternoon (first post 1:10 p.m.), four races after Yonkers International Trot (post time 3:20 p.m.) and three after a $250,000 Invitational Trot.

Both trotting features go at the mile-and-a-quarter distance (part of a ‘French four-pack’), with all other races at the flat mile.

As for Wiggle It Jiggleit, he returns to Westchester for the first time since competing in this past spring’s George Morton Levy Memorial Pacing Series. He’s been board-certified (14 wins, 6 seconds, 2 thirds) in all 22 seasonal starts and 48-of-49 lifetime.

Montrell Teague again does the honours for trainer Clyde Francis and co-owners George Teague, Jr. and Teague Racing Partnership.

Levy series winner Bit of Legend N (Jordan Stratton) won the draw for the Saturday pacing invite.


This story courtesy of Harness Racing Communications, a division of the U.S. Trotting Association. For more information, visit www.ustrotting.com. With files from Yonkers.


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