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'Swandre' Giant In Seventh Straight

Published: August 26, 2018 1:06 am ET

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For the seventh consecutive time, Swandre The Giant and Brandon Bates found Hoosier Park Racing & Casino’s winner’s circle, this time the $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Final for two-year-old trotting colts and geldings on Saturday, Aug. 25.

Looking every bit the part of a 1-9 favourite, the gate-to-wire victory came as no surprise to fans of the two-year-old trotting sensation who stopped the timer in 1:55.1. With the win, Swandre The Giant remains undefeated in seven starts this season and has now won the first three $75,000 Indiana Sires Stakes Finals for his division this season.

Bates sent Swandre The Giant away from the gate firing but was followed closely by Its A Herbie and Verlin Yoder, the other elimination winner. Sign Here N Here with Sam Widger in the bike was next in line in third through first half fractions of :28:1 and :58. Once the horses hit the three-quarters in 1:27:3, Swandre The Giant was still calling the shots but Its A Herbie tracked closely in second and was poised to put up a fight turning for home.

Swandre The Giant and Its A Herbie began to distance themselves from the rest of the field who were left to battle it out for minor spoils some 11 lengths behind the top pair. Its A Herbie tipped from the pocket and made a strong bid at the leader but Swandre The Giant proved too tough once again, holding off Its A Herbie by a length. Airman Kelly and Trace Tetrick were the best of the rest and trotted evenly to finish third. Swandre The Giant paid $2.10 to win for his betting backers.

“He’s definitely a professional, nothing bothers him,” trainer-driver Brandon Bates said after the victory. “With the horses closing in tonight, I did touch him a little bit because he wasn’t paying much attention. He’s better off the helmet but with races like tonight, I put him on the front to keep him out of trouble.”

Saturday's victory brought Swandre The Giant’s lifetime purse earnings to $148,900 for owners Panic Stables, Terry Erhardt, Brian Hochman and Richard Barone.

(With files from Hoosier Park)

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