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My Buddy Liz Wins By A Lip

Published: February 29, 2016 9:01 pm ET

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My Buddy Liz opened a daylight lead at the three-quarters pole, but had to hang tough late to capture the fastest division in Monday’s opening leg of the Donna Dunn Memorial Pace for three and four-year-old fillies and mares at the Meadows.

The series honours the memory of the late Donna Dunn, a long-time Standardbred owner and wife of the late Walter “Boots” Dunn, the accomplished trainer, driver, breeder and United States Trotting Association director.

Away third for Aaron Merriman, My Buddy Liz made the lead easily with a first-over burst and drew off by six lengths. But she had to find more to hold off the rallying Shark Gal by a nose in 1:56.3, a lifetime mark. Wasaga Beach earned show. Dave Zito owns and trains My Buddy Liz, a four-year-old daughter of Badlands Hanover-Taylorlane Action.

Tricky Girl and Call Me Lil Terror, each piloted by Mike Wilder, took the other $12,000 opening-leg splits.

In the $20,000 Filly & Mare Not Listed Preferred/Preferred Handicap Pace, Spreester kept to her task when her cover broke in front of her and went on to score for Merriman and owner/trainer Bill Bercury in1:52.3, matching her career best. Set Me Up shot the Lightning Lane for second, with Champagne Shower third.

With the victory — her second straight — the five-year-old daughter of American Ideal-Rodeo Spree vaulted over $400,000 in lifetime earnings.

Tony Hall, Merriman and Wilder each collected a triple on the 15-race card.

(The Meadows)

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