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Astreos Love Upsets In Ohio Open

Published: March 28, 2015 10:44 pm ET

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Astreos Love raced creditably in his first eight starts at Miami Valley Raceway this winter, earning almost $16,000, but could only garner a pair of fifth-place finishes when elevated to Open company. That changed Saturday night as driver Brad Hanners tactfully guided the five-year-old gelding to an 18-1 upset in the $18,150 feature race.

Sensing hot fractions on the front end, Hanners settled the eventual winner into sixth along the pylons as the leaders reached the quarter in :25.4 and the halfway marker in :53.3. Ice Scraper (Ken Holliday) tripped the first beam while favourite A Sweet Ride (Josh Sutton) tripped the second one.

Twilight Bonfire (Chris Page) was first to move to the outside just past the half with Orions Belt (Greg Grismore) assuming the second-over position and Astreos Love following him.

Twilight Bonfire, who recently surpassed the $1 million earnings plateau with three Open class victories at Miami Valley in recent weeks, failed to fire on this night leaving Orions Belt and Astreos Love no choice but to swing three-wide around the final turn. Both advanced steadily as the field passed the 1:22.2 third stanza, but it was Hanners who had his charge pacing fastest down the middle of the stretch to gain the victory for the Eash Racing Stable.

Winning punters got $38.20 back on their two dollar tickets on Astreos Love. With Ice Scraper holding on for second, the exacta returned $170.60. Another longshot, Kyron (Kayne Kauffman), rallied for the show dough.

There were seven successful claims on the Saturday night program, bringing the total to almost 200 after just 61 nights of racing — tangible evidence that owners, both old and new, and trainers continue to be excited about the recent resurgence in the Ohio racing program.

(With files from Miami Valley Raceway)

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