Strong Hope Doubles Up In Buffalo

Published: April 8, 2016 09:30 pm EDT

After pulling a mild $17.40 upset at Buffalo Raceway last Friday night, it seemed only natural that the public would give Strong Hope some more respect at the betting windows this week.

But that wasn't the case at all. Strong Hope was sent off at 25-to-1 odds this time around and proved his doubters dead wrong by posting a $53.50 victory over Northern Bullet in the featured $9,000 trot in 1:59 over the fast track.

Being assigned the outside post, Strong Hope (Ray Fisher, Jr.) managed to drop into fourth place as Lutetium played catch me if you can as usual. Strong Hope began his first over grind at the half, slowly chipped away at the lead and wore down eventual third place finisher Lutetium (Ron Beback, Jr.) in the stretch. Northern Bullet (Jim Morrill, Jr.) rallied late to take second place, a non-threatening length behind.

Owned by Nancy Knockwood and trained by Joe Agostino, Strong Hope (CR Excalibur-Spring Lane Joanie) is a nine-year-old horse that has now earned $20,581 this season and $521,824 lifetime. It was the third victory of the season in 13 tries for Strong Hope.

Morrill, Jr. finished the night with five wins, Fisher, Jr. and Todd Cummings each doubled in the sulky while Agostino had a training double for the second Friday in a row.

In other news from the Hamburg half-mile oval, current leader in the driver's standings Jack Flanigen will be out of action several weeks after suffering a broken arm in off-track mishap.

Racing will continue on Saturday night at Buffalo Raceway with an 11-race card set for 6 p.m. There will be a $991 carryover in the Pick-5 which begins in the fifth race.

(Buffalo Raceway)