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Milstein Post Positions Drawn

Published: August 9, 2016 12:25 pm ET

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Post positions for the third edition of the Carl Milstein Memorial have been drawn, and a field of eight of the top three-year-old pacers in training is set to clash in the $300,000 event this Saturday (August 13) at Northfield Park.

The Milstein Memorial, which will be raced as an invitational for the first time this year, has been carded as Race 11 on Northfield’s 15-dash Saturday card. The program will kick off with a 6 p.m. first-race post time.

The Milstein Invitational will feature Pepsi North America Cup winner Betting Line, who has reeled off seven consecutive victories for trainer Casie Coleman and has been installed as the 3-5 morning line favourite. David Miller is scheduled to steer the Bettors Delight colt from Post 2.

The field features some quality stock, including filly Pure Country (PP6, Brett Miller, 9-2), the highly regarded Boston Red Rocks (PP8, Ronnie Wrenn Jr., 12-1), the Ontario-connected Magnum J (PP7, Doug McNair, 25-1) and Sintra (PP4, Jody Jamieson, 6-1), in addition to trainer Ron Burke’s Dontcallmefrancis (PP5, Yannick Gingras, 8-1).

Coleman spoke with Trot Insider in regard to the field, and conveyed that the Milstein could be quite the tilt.

"They're going for $300,000 U.S., so it's going to be a tough enough race no matter what,” Coleman said. “There's going to be a lot of horses wanting to go for it. Pure Country, she's tough as nails. She raced well [in the Cane], but had a terrible trip...she's always tough. Boston Red Rocks is always tough and there are some horses I don't know coming in from Indiana, and one from Ohio...looks like they're winning quite often.

“They got a good field of horses, no doubt, but I'm really confident in my horse. He's coming into the race great, he raced really well [on Sunday]. Hopefully he'll do well."

Coleman also said that she does not foresee any issues with Betting Line racing over a half-mile oval for the first time in his pari-mutuel career.

"I don't see any issues going to the half-mile...I've only been there (Northfield) once. I went there with McWicked a couple of years ago and he got over [the track] really well."

The ‘starting lineup’ and the morning line odds for Northfield’s richest race were finalized Tuesday morning. The horses, with their drivers, trainers and morning line odds, appear below.

$300,000 Carl Milstein Memorial
(PP – Horse – Driver – Trainer – Morning Line Odds)
1 – Mr Wiggle Pants – Kayne Kauffman – Jim Mulinix – 10-1
2 – Betting Line – David Miller – Casie Coleman – 3-5
3 – Duel Of Truth – Chris Page – Brian Brown – 20-1
4 – Sintra – Jody Jamieson – David Menary – 6-1
5 – Dontcallmefrancis – Yannick Gingras – Ron Burke – 8-1
6 – Pure Country – Brett Miller – Jimmy Takter – 9-2
7 – Magnum J – Doug McNair – Gregg McNair – 25-1
8 – Boston Red Rocks – Ronnie Wrenn Jr. – Steve Elliott – 12-1

Betting Line, a winner of 13 of 20 starts and $1,277,422, carries a seven-race win streak into the Milstein. His latest score came in Sunday night’s $105,000 Ontario Sires Stakes Gold event at Georgian Downs where he defeated Sintra, a Milstein rival, by a length in 1:51.4.

Sintra is an interesting Milstein entry. He has won seven of 10 starts this year by a combined margin of more than 21 lengths. All three of his defeats have been to Betting Line.

Magnum J, like Betting Line and Sintra, is shipping down from Ontario for the Milstein. None of the three have ever started outside of Ontario. Magnum J also raced Saturday night at Georgian Downs and dropped a photo finish by a neck in a division of the OSS Gold.

The Milstein field includes its first female entry in Pure Country. She was voted the top juvenile filly in the U.S. last year when she won all 10 of her starts. Pure Country has won six of 10 more starts this year, and last Saturday finished fourth, beaten just two and a half lengths in the $320,000 Cane Pace at the Meadowlands Racetrack.

Among the other Milstein entrants is the ‘Buckeye-sired’ Mr Wiggle Pants, winner of the Ohio State Fair pace at Scioto Downs on July 30.

The last two Little Brown Jug champions, Wiggle It Jiggleit and Limelight Beach, both raced in the Milstein before ultimately heading on to the Jug.

Carl Milstein Memorial night at Northfield will also include a Legends Driver Challenge and the $50,000 Myron Charna President’s Pace for Ohio-bred pacers four years-old and up.

Other attractions include Seti’s Polish Boys Food Truck, as well as Draeger’s Hot Fudge Sundaes and Crooked Kettle Popcorn. There will be live music featuring Unknown Reason, a Northfield Park T-Shirt Toss after each of the first 12 live races, a dice roll for prizes (from 8 to 9 p.m.) and an appearance from WMJI’s Chip Kullik from 6 to 8 p.m.

The ‘Milstein’ is named in honour of Carl Milstein, who owned and operated Northfield Park from 1984 until his death in 1999. His son, Brock Milstein, immediately took over as chairman of Northfield Park and is now also the chairman of Milstein Entertainment, LLC, majority owner of the Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park.

In 1972, the senior Milstein, a Cleveland builder and real estate developer, headed a group of several partners, including George Steinbrenner, who purchased Northfield Park. They leased the facility to other operators through the early 1980s. The track lost significant amounts of money during that period before Milstein took full ownership and control. In late 1984 he successfully applied to the Ohio State Racing Commission for the necessary licenses and, beginning in January 1985, conducted permanent race meetings at Northfield of between 212 and 238 days every year.

(With files from Northfield Park)

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