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Spring Sale Topper Sizzles At Hoosier

Published: May 12, 2017 11:41 pm ET

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Rock N Roll World, with driver John DeLong in the bike, made an emphatic debut at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino on Friday, May 12 winning the featured event of the evening, a $21,000 Invitational Pace, and in doing so, recorded the fastest mile of the young 2017 harness racing season in North America.

The 1:48.3 final time established a North American season’s record for aged pacers on any size track.

After fetching a cool $165,000 final bid at the Tattersalls 2017 Spring Mixed Sale at The Meadowlands just five days ago, Rock N Roll World is making good on the investment for new owners Tom Pollack and Jeff Cullipher.

Leaving from post seven, DeLong sent Rock N Roll World away from the gate firing to grab a pocket seat behind the overwhelming favourites, Night Pro and Sam Widger. Night Pro dictated fractions of :26 and :54.2 while the field remained in single-file line down the backside. New Talent and Todd Warren were the first to commit to the outer flow as the field approached the final turn.

Night Pro continued to call the shots through the three-quarter clocking in 1:22.1, but Rock N Roll World loomed large in the pocket. Utilizing a :26 final quarter, Rock N Roll World exploded past Night Pro late in the lane to win by two and three-quarter lengths. Night Pro maintained his position to secure second-place honours while Gerries Sport and Trace Tetrick rallied gamely to round out the trifecta.

Slightly dismissed at the betting windows, Rock N Roll World returned $16.60 to his backers for the win.

“That one had me shaking a little bit,” trainer Jeff Cullipher noted in the winner’s circle. “He’s a very nice horse, I don’t know if I expected that much out of him in his first start for us, but he’s staked to quite a bit of things this year so we’re really excited about him.”

A regally-bred five-year-old son of Rocknroll Hanover-Worldly Beauty, Rock N Roll World recorded his fourth consecutive victory and has now won five of six seasonal starts. With the 1:48.3 victory, Rock N Roll World shaved two seconds off his lifetime record while pushing his lifetime bankroll to $592,050.

The win was also one of two wins for driver John DeLong and trainer Jeff Cullipher. The DeLong-Cullipher combination also found the winner’s circle just a few races later with Shooters Dream in 1:50 in a conditioned pacing event.

Hoosier Park’s reigning leading driver, Trace Tetrick, had five winners on the evening’s 14-race card. Tetrick leads all drivers with 77 wins on the 2017 season.

Live racing at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino will continue on Saturday, May 13 with a 12-race card. Post time is 6:30 p.m.

(With files from Hoosier Park)

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