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Rookies Impress At The Meadowlands

Published: June 20, 2020 12:32 pm ET

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Breakfast With The Babies officially kicked off for the 2020 harness racing on Saturday (June 20) at The Meadowlands with a double-digit delivery of two-year-old qualifiers.

The Saturday session featured 11 qualifiers for two-year-olds, with eight of those coming on the trot. Topofthehill DK made his debut impressively, winning the fastest of those qualifying outings. The Danish-bred son of Muscle Hill made the front early in his qualifier for Mattias Melander, leading through a :29 opener before yielding to a pocket-popping Ethics (Tim Tetrick). Topofthehill DK then waited patiently through panels of :59.2 and 1:29.1 before finding clear sailing without moving from the rail. Ethics started to drift turning for home, ending up in the five-path but still leading. Shown open racetrack, Topofthehill DK sprinted home in :27.3 to defeat Ethics in 1:57.

From the Varenne mare Laurel America, who won 27 races and banked roughly $370,000 in her career, Topofthehill DK is trained by Marcus Melander for owner Fredrik Holth of Granli, Norway

On the pacing side, Darby Hanover was ultra-impressive with a game 1:54 effort in second qualifier of the season. With Andy Miller at the controls, Darby Hanover set fractions of :28.4, :58.4 and 1:27.3 before facing the challenge of Notorious Pink (Tim Tetrick) in the stretch. Pocket-sitting Spicy Covina (Jim Marohn, Jr.) angled to the inside to give Darby Hanover another challenge but the pacesetter would not be denied, sprinting home in :26.2 to trip the timer a length the best in 1:54.

A daughter of Betting Line out of the speedy stakes winner Darena Hanover, Darby Hanover is trained by Julie Miller for Andy Miller Stable Inc. of Millstone Township, N.J. and Caroll Huffman of Sigourney, Iowa. She The connections paid $35,000 for the yearling at Harrisburg.

The Saturday session also featured a handful of prep sessions for some of the sport's established stars and award winners, including O'Brien Award winners Tall Dark Stranger and Caviart Ally. For that recap, click here.

For the results from Saturday's qualifying session at The Meadowlands, click the following link: Saturday Results - Meadowlands Racetrack (Baby Races).


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