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Givens Could Have Powerful 'Pace' Contender


Published: June 30, 2011 11:01 pm ET

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Powerful Mist has emerged as a major contender for this year's Meadowlands Pace with a string of impressive stakes efforts over the past month. The Maryland-bred by Powerful Toy will prep for the 'Pace' eliminations in the $25,000 10th race Open for three-year-olds on Saturday night at Meadowlands Racetrack.

Trained by Wayne Givens, Powerful Mist will start from Post 5 in the eight-horse field, which includes fellow Pace eligibles Fashion Delight, Mystic Desire and Sir Ziggys Tam. Eliminations on July 9 will establish the field for the $1 million Meadowlands Pace on Saturday, July 16.

Powerful Mist has won 13 of 24 career starts and banked $398,537 for Givens' Legacy Racing of Seaford, Delaware, Niel Gargiulo of Milford, Delaware, and Louie Paglierani of Valrico, Florida. His last four starts include a close second in the $300,000 Hempt Final at Pocono Downs, and a 1:50.2 victory in his North America Cup elimination at Mohawk. He finished sixth in the North America Cup final won by Up The Credit.

Powerful Mist - North America Cup Elimination

"He was really good winning his North America Cup elimination with a :53.4 back half," Givens said. "When he just missed in the Hempt Final at Pocono he was on the lead and that's just the way it turned out. The week before, the eventual winner Custard The Dragon had made a break so they didn't want him in front. Joe Pavia Jr. did a great job rating our colt. He tried to take off in a :27 third quarter, and Custard The Dragon had a perfect trip to beat us by half a length. That's the way it goes sometimes.

"Going into the North America Cup final, I thought he might be the best. We fired out for a two-hole trip behind Big Bad John, but that colt wasn't good. We had to come up the inside, and I felt we never really had a clear chance. I shipped him back [to Delaware] the next day and he's been fine. There are no issues with him. It's about a three and a half hour trip to the Meadowlands, but it doesn't bother him at all. I haven't ever been close to going in a million-dollar race and it sure would be exciting."

Powerful Mist was a $27,000 yearling purchase at the 2009 Winbak Farms Sale. As a freshman in 2010, Powerful Mist romped in his third career start at the Meadowlands in 1:51.4, with a final quarter of :26.1. He followed that with another easy 1:51.4 score in his Woodrow Wilson elimination, then set the pace and finished sixth, placed seventh in that final.

"Around the first of the year he acted like something special, so I advised our owners to pay him up into some stakes," Givens said. "He certainly earned his keep as a two-year-old. I thought we should spend a little money to stake him as a three-year-old. So far, it's turned out okay."

Later on in his two-year-old season, Powerful Mist captured the $100,000 Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund Final at Harrington in 1:53, which equaled a world record. Powerful Mist also won his Matron Stake elimination in 1:51.4 at Dover Downs, and was second to Feel Like A Fool in that final.

"He can leave out of there good, and that's an advantage, but I always thought he was better coming from behind," Givens said. "[Driver Tim] Tetrick said he's a horse you can do anything you want with. You can take him off the gate with two fingers and he'll relax just fine. Those are the signs of a good one."

(Meadowlands Racetrack)

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