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Fodera Euphoric Over Hambo Win

Published: August 10, 2020 3:57 pm ET

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The third time has truly proved to be the charm for longtime Standardbred owner John Fodera.

Fodera, who first started owning Standardbreds 59 years ago, finally made it to the Hambletonian winner's circle this past weekend courtesy of Ramona Hill and her gutsy, front-stepping score at the Meadowlands Racetrack in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

Andrew McCarthy and Ramona Hill, pictured after winning the 2020 Hambletonian.

The 2020 edition of the Hambletonian was the third time that Fodera, of Castleton Corners, New York, entered a Standardbred to contest the coveted stakes. And, with his filly, the third time was definitely the charm for the 75-year-old Fodera, who co-owns Ramona Hill along with Florida's Steve Wienick, Milton, Ontario's Brad Grant, Syracuse's Crawford Farms Racing, and Austin, Texas' Robert Leblanc.

“It’s the thrill of a lifetime, something a horse owner dreams about. I’m still in euphoria," Fodera told on Monday (August 10), two days after the dust from the victory had settled.

In the 2020 Hambletonian, driver Andrew McCarthy sent the three-year-old daughter of Muscle Hill to the front during the middle half of the $1-million stakes, made the lead and dared her competition to come get her. Ramona Hill's elite counterparts tried their best, but their best just wasn't enough, as the Tony Alagna trainee would go on to trot to a one-length victory in a stakes-record-equalling 1:50.1.

After having owned Standardbreds for decades and finally winning the Hambletonian, Fodera told that "nothing compares to this" and that "it’s just a phenomenal feeling."

John Fodera, pictured in the Hambletonian winner's circle after winning the 2020 edition with Ramona Hill.

(With files from

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