Comfortably in the pocket, Designed To Be pulled early — the winning decision, as she drew off to an easy victory that matched the stake record of 1:55.2 in Tuesday’s $254,184 Pennsylvania Sires Stake at The Meadows.
The event for two-year-old filly trotters, known as the Delmonica Hanover, was contested over three divisions, with A Perfect Gem and Needle Pointe taking the other $84,728 splits. Andy Miller enjoyed a stake double behind Designed To Be and A Perfect Gem.
Designed To Be had shown a stalking style in her two previous starts, but Miller pushed the button before the half on the 1-5 favourite.
“It was a move I thought I should make with her,” Miller said. “I thought the leader might back into me a little bit. I thought I was the best and if I put her on the front to control the race, she’d be okay. She responded real well. She’s trained on the lead enough, and she knows what she’s doing. She’s a professional.”
Designed To Be rolled on to defeat Demanding Sam, driven by Paul MacDonell for trainer Scott McEneny, by 4-1/4 lengths. Early leader Royal Tabs saved show. The time equaled the Delmonica Hanover mark established by Sand Violent Blu in 2011. Julie Miller trains the homebred daughter of Donato Hanover-Sheer Soul for Al Libfeld and Marvin Katz.
A Perfect Gem gave up the lead late in her last outing, the Arden Downs at The Meadows, but she had plenty left in the Delmonica Hanover after a cover trip, shooting the Lightning Lane to triumph in a career best 1:57. Global Magic was second, with Vanity Matters third.
“I think she was a little sick last week, and she likes chasing horses down,” Miller said. “Maybe reversing the trip helped her. She was on her game today, whether I was on the front or off a helmet.”
Robin Cruise conditions the daughter of Yankee Glide-Asixpakfromperfect for Paymaq Racing, Louis Willinger and Daniel Plouffe.
Dismissed at 23-1, Needle Pointe found a good early seat from Post 7, then brushed through the Lightning Lane to upset in 1:58.3 for MacDonell, trainer Wayne Henry and owner Shelley Henry. Abettajetta fell a neck short in second while the first-over Noon Tea Party earned show.
“I was pretty sure that she would need a trip however she raced,” MacDonell said. “She’s real handy, and that’s what made the race. She got off the gate strong, and she finished strong. That’s kind of her M.O. Next year when she fills out and matures, she’ll be even better.”
The daughter of Cantab Hall-Sumi Hanover broke her maiden with the victory.
Brett Miller drove three winners on the 15-race card.