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The Keys To 'The Freak’s Success

Published: November 5, 2015 3:56 pm ET

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Freaky Feet Pete’s trainer, Larry Rheinheimer, has discussed his star Rockin Image colt, and has touched on the keys to ‘The Freak’s success.

“The key to Pete’s success seems to be his attitude,” Rheinheimer explained. “He’s got a playful, goofy demeanor and once he steps out of the trailer at the racetrack, he’s all business. He knows when it’s time to get to work, and he loves his work, yes he does.”

The sophomore pacer has been a terror on the United States’ Midwest harness racing scene all year. He most recently captured the coveted $531,250 Breeders Crown final for three-year-old male pacers.

On Saturday night he’ll venture postward against six rivals in the $150,000 American National for three-year-old colt and gelding pacers. ‘Pete’ will be trying for his sixth consecutive victory and will start from Post 2. Regular pilot Trace Tetrick will be behind the swift-footed Indiana-bred.

Rheinheimer bred Freaky Feet Pete for owners Mary Jo and Marty R Rheinheimer. The bay is a total family horse, as the homebred often has Mary Jo at his side as his caretaker whenever he races. A winner of 14 of 16 starts this season, the colt’s connections forked out $62,500 to supplement him to the Breeders Crown on October 24 at Woodbine Racetrack, a costly investment that more than paid off when the ‘Pride of Indiana’ bested some of the sport’s top male sophomores in 1:50.

That triumph also gave Tetrick his first Breeders Crown trophy. “It was exciting,” he revealed. “It was something I’ll never forget.”

Born May 31, 2012 in LaGrange, Indiana, Freaky Feet Pete is the eighth foal out of the Pilgrims Punch mare Skyway Lori p, 3, 1:54.1S ($56,663) and has half siblings in: Dongetinskyway (by Dontgetinmyway) p,6,1:51.2 ($288,458); Virgil (by Always A Virgin) p, 5, 1:51f ($217,803); Dontlookatthesky (by Dontgetinmyway) p,4,1:51.3 ($170,396); Just Fred (by Dontgetinmyway) p,4,1:51.3 ($166,750); Loretta (by Dontgetinmyway) p,5,1:52s ($145,112); Lightninginthesky (by Electric Yankee) p,5,1:52.1s ($129,032); and Good Gum Gertie (by Palone Ranger) p,3,1:53.1 ($43,993), etc.

‘Pete,’ as he’s known around the Rheinheimer’s barn at the family’s home in LaGrange, IN, showed signs of greatness as a freshman, as he captured nine of his 10 starts in 2014 and earning $261,950. He won his first career start on July 3, 2014 at Hoosier, pacing in 1:55.1 with Tetrick at the lines. One week later, he won an Indiana Sires Stake in a blistering 1:51.4 at Hoosier.

As a two-year-old he went on to win multiple sire stake tests in the Hoosier State before capturing the $220,000 ISS Final on October 18 at Hoosier Park, stopping the timer in 1:50.4 and drawing off from his rivals by 11 and a half lengths.

“He surprises me every time he’s on the track,” Larry stressed. “We don’t give Trace any instructions but he always takes care of him and does what he needs to do.”

Freaky Feet Pete has now amassed $1,037,724 from 23 wins and two seconds in 26 trips postward. In fact, he’s only finished off the board once in his career and that was in his third career start as a freshman, when he finished fourth. The hardy colt thus has never missed a purse cheque, ever.

The colt really didn’t start to show was he was going to become a superstar though until he made that first career start, Larry recalled.

“He won his first race, then his second, and we started to think he might be something special,” Larry said.

Now that’s a point everyone is getting the chance to evidence by the eye popping numbers that he continues to put up!

(Balmoral Park)

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