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Melander Confident In Gimpanzee

Published: November 21, 2019 6:25 pm ET

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Gimpanzee will attempt to extend a win streak for three-year-old male trotters in the $350,000 TVG Open Trot final this Saturday evening. The past two editions of the championship were won by sophomores – Tactical Landing in 2018 and What The Hill in 2017).

The TVG open finals are part of a stakes-filled card that is set for the Meadowlands Racetrack this Saturday (Nov. 23). The program will also feature TVG championships for trotting mares and pacing mares, plus the Fall Final Four for two-year-old male and female trotters and pacers. Racing will get underway at 7 p.m. (EST).

Gimpanzee, pictured winning the 2019 Breeders Crown Three-Year-Old Colt Trot at Woodbine Mohawk Park.

Gimpanzee will start the TVG Open Trot from Post 2 with Brian Sears driving for trainer Marcus Melander. The colt will face a group that includes history’s fastest female trotter, Manchego, and one of history’s fastest male trotters, Six Pack, as well as this year’s Maple Leaf Trot winner, Guardian Angel AS.

“It will be an exciting race to watch,” Melander said. “I don’t know what to expect. I know my horse is very good at the moment. I think he’s coming into the race very sharp.

“It’s been a long season for all these horses, so you never know. But I’m confident in my horse. I think he can step up and win this race, otherwise I wouldn’t have put him in the race. I didn’t want to be in the race just to be in it. I believe he is capable to win the race, but it’s going to be tough.”

Gimpanzee, who was the 2018 Dan Patch Award winner for best two-year-old male trotter, has won eight of 13 races this season and $1.10 million. The son of Chapter Seven-Steamy Windows, owned by Courant Inc. and S R F Stable, enters the TVG off wins in the Breeders Crown in October and Matron Stakes on November 14.

“He came out of the Matron very good,” Melander said. “We trained him (Wednesday) morning and everything felt good. I’m pleased with him.

“We got a good draw. You never know when you’re racing against aged horses, but I was really happy with how my horse performed last week. He showed, at least, that he’s in good form. There were some nice three-year-olds in that race, and he won pretty easily.”

Manchego will arrive at the Meadowlands with a six-race win streak, which includes her 1:49 world record triumph at the Allerage Mare Trot at Lexington’s Red Mile and the Breeders Crown Mare Trot final. Six Pack, who owns a career mark of 1:49.1 and season mark of 1:49.2, won the Allerage Open Trot and finished second from Post 10 to French star Bold Eagle in the Breeders Crown.

(With files from the USTA)

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