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'Ana' Bests 'Colossal' At 'Big M'

Published: April 18, 2021 12:09 am ET

Last Comment: April 18, 2021 9:25 am ET | 1 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

For a second-straight week, Ana Afreet N bested Colossal Stride A after a scintillating stretch drive to take the Preferred for pacers at The Meadowlands Saturday night (April 18), one of two co-features on the card that went for $30,000.

“With the three scratches and the way it worked out,” said winning driver Tim Tetrick. “I drew inside of Dexter [Dunn, driving Colossal Stride A] and had to make sure he would have to chase me again.”

Using the same script from a week ago, Tetrick and his horse were good enough to get the same result.

Only six were behind the starting gate. Tetrick asked Ana Afreet N for an early burst of speed from post 4 and got it, getting around Vettel N out of the first turn and hitting the quarter in :27.2.

Up the backstretch, 4-5 favourite Colossal Stride A vacated the five-hole at the half and cut into the leader’s edge onto and around the far turn. When they turned for home, Colossal Stride A had momentum and a head advantage, but Ana Afreet N would not be denied.

The duo went toe-to-tie like a pair of heavyweights in the 15th round for the final three-sixteenths, and at the wire, it was Ana Afreet N prevailing by a nose for a second straight week, at odds of 3-1 for a second straight week, over an odds-on Colossal Stride A for a second straight week. Vettel N was third.

“It was a real nail-biter all the way to the wire,” said Tetrick. “That horse got a head in front of me but my horse fought back.”

Ana Afreet N returned $8.20 to his backers in taking his third straight at The Big M. The six-year-old son of Bettors Delight-Anna Livia, who is trained by Meadowlands’ leader Jeff Cullipher and owned by Pollack Racing and Cullipher, now has 25 wins from just 51 starts and earnings of $213,272.

Despite facing six tough opponents and not having raced since Nov. 21, Lindy The Great and driver Andy Miller worked a perfect trip to take the marquee trotting event–a Preferred Handicap–in 1:52.3.

The seven-year-old son of Crazed-Highscore Kemp was racing in the three-hole sixth along the rail on the far turn as even-money favorite Scirocco Rob, who was seeking his third straight score, was on the lead.

That’s when Lindy The Great caught a big break, as Morairtime went off stride while third over, so Miller quickly swerved his horse into that spot, which meant he would have clearance for the stretch drive.

“I just wanted to give him a nice, easy trip,” said Miller, whose wife Julie trains the lifetime earner of $1,054,199. “The race shook out well for us and he was full of trot finishing.”

Three-quarters was timed in 1:24 as Lovedbythemasses applied pressure to the leader while first over as Its Academic swung off that live tow three wide and took Lindy The Great with him into the stretch. Lindy The Great then exploded through the lane to record an easy one-and-a-quarter-length score to equal his win output from all of 2020. Scirocco Rob held second with Its Academic third.

“I just wanted to see what he would do,” said Andy Miller of his horse who raced with trotting hopples removed. “I thought I’d try it last week [in his qualifier] and he was super solid. Hopefully, he can go all year without them. We are really excited about this year.”

Lindy The Great paid $5.80 as the 9-5 second choice in winning for the 16th time from 64 career starts. He is owned by Andy Miller Stable and Team Lindy The Great.

A LITTLE MORE: All-source wagering totaled $3,625,679 to wrap a weekend that saw total betting of over $6.8 million.

The 10th race 50-cent Pick-4 pool of $136,807 was a 2021 best. Todd McCarthy and Tetrick each won twice during the sequence, and those who hit cashed in for $128.30 after two favorites and two 3-1 shots scored. 10 of the 13 races on the program were won by horses who went off at 3-1 or less.

McCarthy led the drivers with three winners on the card.

Racing resumes Friday (April 23) at 6:20 p.m. (EDT).

(The Meadowlands)

April 18, 2021 - 9:25 amA couple other notes on last

Mike Mobley SAID...

A couple other notes on last night's Meadowlands program: Nicholas Beach won the 9th race in 1:48.2, the 2nd fastest mile in North America this year. The 5-year-old has only made 15 lifetime starts, but he's won 12 of them and finished 2nd in the other 3. Also, not only did Ana Afreet win the Preferred for the 2nd straight week, but for the 2nd straight week, Colossal Stride was the odds-on favorite and Ana was the 3-1 co-favorite, for the 2nd straight week, the mile went in 1:49.4, and for the 2nd straight week, Ana won by a nose!

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