Eternal Lee Steadfast On Oak Grove Opening Day

Published: April 16, 2023 10:15 pm EDT

Eternal Lee withstood sustained pressure before drawing clear to a 1:58 win in the featured $24,000 Open Trot on Sunday's (April 16) meet-opening harness racing program at Oak Grove Racing, Gaming & Hotel.

Trainer-driver Roger Cullipher put Eternal Lee in play from post five immediately as the gates closed, and the four-year-old Southwind Frank mare wasted no time clearing the pole-sitting Stride The Hill to control a :28.1 first quarter. After early outside challenger Just For Trix broke stride coming off the first turn, Eternal Lee found herself in the crosshairs of 3-5 public choice Its A Herbie, who advanced uncovered after being caught three-wide for most of the first turn. Its A Herbie maintained outside pressure on Eternal Lee through middle splits of :58.3 and 1:27.1 before fading off the home turn. Eternal Lee, on the other hand, gained separation on her rivals after cornering for home, finishing four lengths clear at the winning post. Primed N Powerful (Atlee Bender) hooked three-wide out of traffic at the eighth pole to edge the four-wide Luckey Stormin (Joey Putnam) and the ground-saving Jacked (Drew Neill) in a place photo.

Murray Ferguson owns and bred 10-time winner Eternal Lee, who paid $14.60 to win.

A pair of $20,000 paces for Kentucky-eligible four-year-olds served as supporting events on the 10-race card. Ainthesamewithoutu ($2.56, Tony Hall) sustained a first-over grind to wear down Kentukylady before holding off Galinaruckus by a half length in 1:55.3 in the distaff event, while Wolftrax ($3.14, Atlee Bender) employed similar tactics to nab Dancin Sancho by the same margin in 1:54 in the male pace.

Racing returns to Oak Grove on Monday. First post is 3 p.m. (CDT).

(Oak Grove Racing)

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