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Roland Bags Pair Of Features

Published: August 19, 2019 12:42 pm ET

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Horseman Nick Roland won two of the featured races during Running Aces’ live program on Sunday (Aug. 18).

Roland steered his three-year-old gelded trotter to victory in the $16,000 Minnesota-Sired sophomore trot from Post 7. They got away quickly for the early lead before yielding to Major Al-Mar (driven by Dean Magee) for the pocket. Ice Storm (Mooney Svendsen) came from second over and battled late with Major Al-Mar. MD Magic looked to be blocked nearing the wire, but Roland was able to thread the needle and surge in between his two rivals to get up right on the money in a three-way photo as they stopped the timer in 2:00.3.

For MD Magic ($4.00), it was four wins in a row and his sixth victory in eleven outings in 2019, for seasonal earnings of $50,550. The winning owners are Set The Pace Racing, LLC.

Roland sent out Firedrake in the $15,000 Open Handicap Pace for horses and geldings, and again had to face his chief rival Nine Ways (Dean Magee) who was in search of his ninth consecutive win and was heavily favored at 2-5. Both Firedrake and Nine Ways flashed their customary gate speed. Firedrake got to the front first from Post 6, then yielding to the big favourite near the eighth-mile mark as they ripped off an opening stanza of :26.4.

Nine Ways led through the middle stages in :56.1 and 1:24.2, but faced strong first-over pressure from Fox Valley Nemitz (Brian Detgen). Nine Ways had the lead as they straightened for home, with Fox Valley Nemitz still pressing on, and Bettors Promise tipping wide with pace. Firedrake was looking for room and found just enough to squeeze through the inside lane and make it a four way go at the line. After a lengthy photo finish examination, Roland and Firedrake had gotten home just in front of Nine Ways in an absolute thriller in 1:53.

Set The Pace Racing, LLC. are the proud owners of Firedrake, who is a six-year-old gelded son of Dragon Again. Firedrake ($14.40) has now recorded three wins and banked $50,780 this season.

Running Aces honored and remembered horseman Tim Brown on Sunday, as the $15,000 Open Trot was named the Tim Brown Memorial Race and was captured by Winning Lyric ($3.20).

Nineteen-year-old driver Braxten Boyd picked up his first career pari-mutuel driving victory on Sunday at Running Aces when he steered his family-owned pacer Bestinthebusiness ($13.60) to victory.

Live racing will return to Running Aces on Tuesday night (Aug. 20) with local post time at 6 p.m.

(With files from Running Aces)

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