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'Wiggle It' Prevails In Dayton Duel

Published: September 30, 2016 10:11 pm ET

Last Comment: October 5, 2016 1:51 pm ET | 15 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

As the field headed into the stretch, the $150,000 Dayton Pacing Derby turned into another duel between rivals Always B Miki and Wiggle It Jiggleit, with the latter gaining the slight advantage at the wire for the Friday (September 30) feature victory at Hollywood Gaming Dayton Raceway.

Wiggle It Jiggleit rallied off the cover of Always B Miki and defeated that foe in 1:49.1 track record mile by a head for driver Montrell Teague. Sentimental favourite Freaky Feet Pete finished third in his first start since the passing of his trainer Larry Rheinheimer.

Luck Be Withyou (Eric Goodell) blasted off the gate from post four to establish the lead ahead of inside starters Freaky Feet Pete (Trace Tetrick) and Always B Miki (David Miller) while Teague moved Wiggle It Jiggleit into the top four from post five. The 30-1 longshot leader carved out fractions of :26.2, :54.4 and 1:22.1 with even-money favourite Always B Miki tipping first over at the half and 6-5 Wiggle It Jiggleit tracking his cover. Always B Miki advanced up on even terms with Luck Be Withyou at the third quarter mark and then took over the lead turning for home. Wiggle It Jiggleit rallied to his outside at the top of the stretch and eventually persevered in the stretch duel that ensued, sprinting home in :26.3, with fellow Indiana-sired star Freaky Feet Pete finishing one and three-quarter lengths behind in third. Always At My Place (Chris Page) was fourth while All Bets Off (Matt Kakaley) and Shamballa (Scott Zeron) finished fifth in a dead-heat.

"I looked to the inside and I figured there were three that were never going to leave out of there. If I was up on the gate a little bit more, I probably would have left, but the trip worked out good," said Teague of his racing strategy. "And Miki, I thought he was going to move back to the front and leave me first over, but I got the trip that I wanted."

The victory was the 14th in 22 starts this year for Wiggle It Jiggleit, who is trained by Clyde Francis and owned by George Teague Jr. Inc. and the Teague Racing Partnership. The popular Mr Wiggles-Mozzi Hanover gelding has now won 37 races in his career and has amassed a bankroll of more than $3.8 million.

"It's unbelievable to me," said Teague of the four-year-old pacer's fan following. "You come track to track, and you see so many people coming out just to watch him. Walking down and everybody screaming his name and my name, it never gets old."

Wiggle It Jiggleit paid $4.40 to win.

One race earlier in Friday's co-feature event, Obrigado prevailed off a perfect pocket trip to add the $160,000 Dayton Trotting Derby to his resume.

Driver Mark MacDonald and Obrigado charged off the gate from post five, but gave way to outside leaver Homicide Hunter (Eric Goodell) during a :26.3 first quarter. Obrigado followed in the pocket through middle splits of :56.2 and 1:24.2 while Wind Of The North (Matt Kakaley) swept three-wide down the backstretch around stalled cover and confronted the race leader. As Wind Of The North battled Homicide Hunter into the stretch, MacDonald angled Obrigado to the far outside and charged right by down the lane to win in 1:53.2 by two and a quarter lengths. Centurion ATM (Aaron Merriman) came through for second-place while Wind Of The North edged out Crazy Wow (Chris Page) in a photo for show. Favourite Shake It Cerry (David Miller), the only mare in the field of nine, finished fifth.

Despite an extended four-hour ship from Lexington to Dayton due to traffic, Obrigado added the Dayton Derby to his list of 2016 accomplishments that include the Maxie Lee, Charlie Hill, Cleveland Classic and Crawford.

"It didn't effect him, but I think my blood pressure's a little high due to the trip," said trainer and co-owner Paul Kelley after the victory. "The traffic from Cincinnati was brutal and then again coming to Dayton, but we made it in the nick of time and the horse just never lets us down."

Obrigado didn't let his backers down either, paying $5.40 to win as the 5-2 second wagering favourite.

Kelley shares ownership of the six-year-old Boy Band-Malimony gelding with the Srf Stable, Linwood Higgins, and Stable 45. The victory was the trotter's 40th lifetime and pushed his bankroll over $1.36 million.

"He's a very, very sound horse and takes care of himself very well, and I don't see any reason why he won't come back next year and race at the same level," said Kelley.

October 5, 2016 - 1:51 pmIf WIJI wins horse of the

John Carter SAID...

If WIJI wins horse of the year then in my opinion this award will have lost all credibility and should be done away with or the people who vote on it need to be replaced. WIJI has lost to overnight horses like Nickle Bag and Rockin Ron plus he has lost many other races and never even qualified for the series final at yonkers that he was entered in at the start of the year. Hardly the race record that would warrant winning HOY honors

October 5, 2016 - 9:52 amJohn Carter ... you are

John Carter ... you are exactly correct in HOY being Betting Line like I said prior. It really is a laughable that a horse with as many losses is leading the Hambletonian Poll right now. He beats MIKI and he gets many more votes but every time someone beats him (which is often) he barely moves in the poll. LOL

As for racing against the olders there is a slight chance where Control the Moment won the Meadowlands Pace and is now retired they may offer the invite to Betting Line in the TVG final. I hope the connections take it, especially where it was announced he was going to the breeding shed next year? I dont know the reasoning but with the stipulations of the major races having to be foals of stallions 5 years old and up, unless in jury, I can't understand the reasoning there. Maybe because of heading to the breeding shed though he may tackle them as it would be great on his papers if he won and if he loses he is expected to lose anyway against older.

October 4, 2016 - 6:15 pmI would love to see the match

Mike Scott SAID...

I would love to see the match race, like I said, at Mohawk. Whoever wins 2 races get one million dollars. It's $100 to get in.

October 4, 2016 - 12:31 pmState a Race? The Last one!

State a Race? The Last one! He beat Miki!

October 4, 2016 - 9:30 amIt appears a lot of people

It appears a lot of people seem to get HOY confused with popularity.

WIJI is probably the most fan fav horse since SomeBeach. He is awesome for our industry. Last year he dominated as a three year old and deserved HOY. This year he has lost to overnight horses while a mare has beaten the boys consistently in the preferred trotters and another 3 year old has dominated more than WIJI did last year in his division. A couple years ago we had the two year old filly as HOY. She wasn't obviously the fastest horse but most dominate and She also wasn't the most popular.

WIJI is doing an amazing job as a 4 year old racing older horses but he doesn't deserve HOY just because he is the most popular. He has lost to over night horses and claimers and has done this several times. Yet earlier this year people were saying he is one of best ever. That's a joke.

WIJI deserves 4 year old of year, maybe aged horse of year, and maybe all the following if they were categories but are not, Fan favorite, inspirational horse, toughest horse, consistent horse.

Once again I come to this question: State a race other than LBJ where WIJI was so impressive, that he set a world record or totally dominated or did something special? Even for you most loyal fans that is probably hard question to answer. One race came to mind for me after a couple minutes (and it was 3 year old season as well)

Ask same question but put MIKIs name there and several races come to mind.

October 4, 2016 - 8:10 amHe raced in stakes all yr

He raced in stakes all yr against the same horses as Miki.. what planet you guys on?

October 4, 2016 - 5:52 amThere isn't much to choose

John Carter SAID...

There isn't much to choose between Miki and WIJI. To suggest that either Miki or WIJI should be horse of the year is laughable. As of now it is a one horse race and if he doesn't get beat again this year, Betting Line is the horse of the year hands down. What would be great for the sport is if the connections of Betting Line would take a shot at the older pacers this year. If the race was held on a mile track with his closing kick he would be close at the end. This of course won't happen but it would be great if it did.

October 4, 2016 - 12:37 amYou are correct John Thomas,

You are correct John Thomas, that everytime MIKI races it's against the top horses. That can't be said for any of the other horses. His only "easy" starts were at the start of the year when he was in the preferreds and they were going in 1:47.

Yes, WIJI races very often but it is against week competition often. Yes he is great for the sport and love the fact he is promoting it and his owners are as well. Top notch act. Make no mistake though they are pushing him for the money while they can and have openly stated so..... He has no payday coming later on as he can't breed so it all has to be on the track.

Also many of his wins are on the half mile tracks, which is great for him for longevity (similar to Foiled Again). MIKI is not suited for half mile tracks and in fact almost wiped out on the 5/8 (while establishing a world record at the same time). Why did he wipe out --> because he has so much top end speed. Check the races that MIKI won and everyone of them are the faster races. WIJI has only won the slower races.

It will be nice to see WIJI next year as a five year old and hopefully he races the same or better and not be burnt out racing the claimers and over-nighters week in and week out. Will be sad for many of the fans to see him drop off fast if he gets burnt out chasing all these smaller purses and pushing him every week. Of course it goes back to their comments... we'll be where the money is.... as they are chasing it while they can and hoping it lasts as long as it can.

October 3, 2016 - 11:10 pmMiki is a HUGE horse he's

Miki is a HUGE horse he's like 16.2 or 16.3 and he's Long legged which carries his gait. He can cover ground in one stride compared to their 2 or 3! Not taking anything way from him but their all equally fast but if your going stride by stride with him he's going to out reach you most of the time! He's Bigger and Taller! He's supposed to Dominate, Its like Rocky vs the Russian, Rocky won but we all know that was just a movie.. But far as Guts, Heart and speed WIJI Hands Down!! Here's a 3 yr that came back at 4 and dominant the older division on all size tracks. Screw the races he lost, talk about how many He Won! Every week he's just as Strong, Fast, Sharp as his Last Start! Deserves HOY!!

October 2, 2016 - 7:22 pmThe thing I love most about

john thomas SAID...

The thing I love most about Miki is he is game to the wire every time.
If he gets beat one week he comes back and adds another world record to his mantle.
He is the only one who has done that this year.
You will never see him lining up against the likes of Mcardles Lightning on half mile tracks. He faces the best every race who dare to.

October 2, 2016 - 4:15 pmTed Decker....WIJI definitely

Ted Decker....WIJI definitely will be 4 year old pacer of the year and deserves it. As for horse of the year, honestly neither him or MIKi should get it. They have both been beaten many times. Yes they are both better than all the other horses but horse of the year goes to the most dominate of their division. It seems Betting Line should be HOY. Hannelore Hanover or Marion Maurauder should also have more consideration.

I know you are a huge fan of WIJI but lets put it this way, last year WIJI was HOY (deserved) but if you compare his record from last year to Betting Line's from this year, betting line has a better record with only 1 loss (his first start). WIJI had 11 wins (not top stake company) last year prior to laying off for a month and half prior to April. Betting Line also has a faster race record than WIJI did last year (or in fact his record is equal to WIJI lifetime mark.

Being a WIJI fan and actually thinking a little about the numbers I would hope you would agree Betting Line actually deserves HOY this year the same as WIJI did last year.

It was a great race this week also and WIJI deserved the win. I think it was his best race actually all year.

October 2, 2016 - 2:53 pmtip of the hat on a well

john thomas SAID...

tip of the hat on a well driven race by Montrell.
for the score
Miki 3 / WIJI 3

By the way. For those of you who think I was joking about WIJI previously racing against optional 50k claimer.
I assure you I was not.
I may have been over estimating Mcardles Lightnings worth in the Quillen memorial
Back on July 30th race 8 at the Big M.
NW/11,500 last 5 going for 17,500
Race 10 was a NW 7,500 L5 and an optional 15k tag racing for 10,200
so you do the math. Maybe thats the equivalent of 35k claimer for Mcardle's Lightning.
He was racing against Calvin B and Rakin Wizard that night.
For those of you who think others were avoiding WIJI in the 150k quillen memorial. No they were racing in the Hoosier Park 175k against the tougher horses.
Miki is not micromanaged to make sure he races in all the little half mile track events against class B or C types.
Every time he goes out it's against the top pacers win or lose. He dodges nobody.
I love this horse!!!!
Every time he races he puts it all out on the track.
He may be the fastest horse out there.

October 2, 2016 - 11:16 amHe is a throwback to what

Bob Colbert SAID...

He is a throwback to what horses used to be like. He races often and is always at the top of his game racing against the best FFA horses in North America. His connections understand what he means to the sport and do an excellent job allowing the public to see him.

October 1, 2016 - 8:23 pmHe comes to race week in and

Ted Decker SAID...

He comes to race week in and week out. Off the front from behind. He gets the job done. Even takes time to stop at the Jug and promote the sport. Class. Class. Class. And he is fast too. By far 4 year old and horse of the year honors.

October 1, 2016 - 6:32 amWhat a horse race :) the

Mike Scott SAID...

What a horse race :) the brawler wins again. Always B Miki can't race with him week in and week out. Wiggle It Jiggleit is just too tough

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