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Triple Crown Winner Seeks International Glory

Published: October 13, 2017 10:26 am ET

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Marion Marauder is no stranger to Yonkers Raceway. Last year, the horse went two-for-two at The Hilltop, winning both the elimination and final of the Yonkers Trot.

The Yonkers Trot win resulted in an invitation to last year’s International Trot, but his connections turned it down to focus on the Trotting Triple Crown (Hambletonian, Yonkers Trot, and Kentucky Futurity) and Breeders Crown. Marion Marauder completed his sweep of the Triple Crown by winning the Futurity a week prior to the International.

“Turning it down last year was tough,” said Mike Keeling, who trains Marion Marauder with wife Paula Wellwood.

“We always put a lot of thought into everything we do with him,” he continued, discussing the decision to accept this year. “We had a schedule mapped out and we always knew this might come up. Once we talked to a few of our friends that have done this, they recommended it highly. They said Yonkers does a wonderful job and treats you like a king. We decided, not many people get this opportunity so we’re going to do it.”

Marion Marauder is one of only two four-year-olds in the race. The other is Dreammoko.

“This means the world to us,” Wellwood said. “He’s the horse of a lifetime. He is very special and we’re honoured to have him.

“This would be as exciting as winning the Hambletonian, for sure,” she added. “It’s a very prestigious race that my family has been in before. It would be a great honour.”

Marion Marauder, owned by Devin Keeling and Jean Wellwood, won this year’s Hambletonian Maturity for four-year-olds at the distance of 1-1/8 miles at the Meadowlands. He has won 14 of 35 lifetime races and earned $2.22 million. He starts the International Trot from post one with regular driver Scott Zeron.

Zeron said he would spend this week taking a look at his competition, particularly from Europe.

“That’s what I have to do through this week, study those horses that are from overseas and figure out what kind of characteristics they have,” Zeron said. “I know that so far I’m going to have the shortest distance to the wire, so I’m very happy with the draw and I’m happy with my horse.”

Oasis Bi Seeks Revenge

Oasis Bi, who finished second to Resolve in last year’s International Trot and is making his third appearance in the event, will start Saturday from post two. That post happens to be the starting spot of the two most recent International champions, Resolve and Norway’s Papagayo.

“It is difficult to win this race; there are a lot of good horses,” trainer Stefan Pettersson said. “We think we’ve got a very good number behind the gate and he’s in good shape, so we’ll do our best.”

Added owner P.G. Svard, “We say the third time gives us luck.”

Danish Tripolini V P A “Very Tough Horse”

Denmark’s Tripolini V P comes to the International Trot with three wins in his last four races. The seven-year-old gelding drew post nine in the second tier, behind Marion Marauder, and is 15-1 on the morning line. He will be driven by trainer Jeppe Juel.

For his career, Tripolini V P has won 21 of 56 races and earned $230,561. He is a son of stallion Archduke Kemp out of the mare Lady Magic D. His dam is by U.S.-bred Shane Scottseth and his sire, by Express Ride out of the mare Emilie Cas El, is a half-brother to 2014 Hambletonian winner Trixton.

“He’s a very tough horse, that’s what makes him special,” said owner Niels Juel, the father of Jeppe. “He is in good shape. He’s not won any very big races, but he’s won a lot of them and worked very hard to make his money.

“We are excited and happy to be here.”

On Track Piraten Connections Hoping For Better Luck

The connections of Sweden’s nine-year-old On Track Piraten, who joins Italy’s Oasis Bi as a three-time International Trot participant, are hoping for better luck in this year’s event.

In 2015, On Track Piraten finished seventh after an early three-wide move left the gelding parked first-over for a lengthy distance. Last year, On Track Piraten was the fastest horse by a full second over the race’s final quarter-mile, but had too much distance to overcome after starting from post eight. He finished fourth, beaten by 2-1/2 lengths.

“With a good trip I think he can beat almost anyone,” said John Backlund, representing the ownership group of Stall Morkermasse and Stall CK HB. “He’s a very tough horse. He just keeps going.”

On Track Piraten has won 37 of 116 career races and earned $1.99 million. He will start the International Trot from post ten, in the second tier behind Oasis Bi (post two). On Track Piraten, who will be driven by Johnny Takter and is trained by Hans Stromberg, is 8-1 on the morning line.

“He was not as good this summer, he had some allergy problems, but I think now he is in good shape,” Backlund said.

“We are enjoying the hospitality. It’s been amazing every year. We are just happy to be here.”

Dreammoko Looks To Follow In Sire’s Footsteps

With Timoko having retired earlier this year, France turns to his four-year-old son Dreammoko in the International Trot. Timoko, whose career accomplishments include two wins in the Elitlopp, finished second in the 2015 International Trot.

Dreammoko will start from post three with Gabriele Gelormini driving for trainer Richard Westerink, who also conditioned Timoko. Dreammoko, who has won three of 13 races and $293,802 this year, is 6-1 on the morning line. He is owned by Jan Stins.

French horses have won the International Trot on 13 occasions.

“I think he is a very fast horse and a very tough horse,” Westerink said. “He likes tough races. We will see if he can take a little place. That will be nice.

“He’s not raced on a half-mile track. That’s not a problem for him. He will take the turns good, I think.”

Following is the field in post-position order for the International Trot with drivers, trainers and morning line odds.

Post - Horse - Driver - Trainer - Line
1. Marion Marauder - Scott Zeron - Paula Wellwood – 5-1
2. Oasis Bi - Kim Eriksson - Stefan Pettersson – 5-1
3. Dreammoko - Gabriele Gelormini - Richard Westerink – 6-1
4. Twister Bi - Christoffer Eriksson - Jerry Riordan – 4-1
5. Shadow Woodland - Tim Tetrick - Reijo Liljendahl – 12-1
6. Resolve - Åke Svanstedt - Åke Svanstedt – 3-1
7. Midnight Hour - Iikka Nurmonen - Ossi Nurmonen – 10-1
8. In Secret - George Brennan - Ron Burke – 6-1
9. Tripolini VP - Jeppe Juel - Jeppe Juel – 15-1
10. On Track Piraten - Johnny Takter - Hans Strömberg – 8-1

Note: Tripolini VP and On Track Piraten start from the second tier.

This story courtesy of Harness Racing Communications, a division of the U.S. Trotting Association. For more information, visit

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