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'Max' Showing Heart Of His Namesake

Published: July 29, 2021 10:04 am ET

Last Comment: July 29, 2021 9:11 pm ET | 1 Comment(s) | Jump to Comments

When Mysweetboymax races in Saturday’s (July 31) $375,000 final of the Delvin Miller Adios Pace for the Orchids at The Meadows, Alison and Scott Liroff and their family will be watching from their Basking Ridge, N.J., home with more than the usual interest.

That’s because the horse was named for their late son Max, who succumbed to cancer in 2018 at the age of 25. Mysweetboymax leaves from post six with David Miller aboard in the Adios, which goes as race 15.

The Adios anchors a blockbuster program that includes five other stakes: the $106,745 Quinton Patterson Adioo Volo for three-year-old pacing fillies; a pair of Arden Downs Grand Circuit events for freshman pacers, and a $143,132 Pennsylvania Sire Stakes and a $40,000 Pennsylvania Stallion Series event, both for three-year-old trotting fillies.

In addition, the Adios Day program features five pool guarantees totalling $90,000, including a $40,000 Super Hi-5 guarantee — with a mandatory payout — on the Adios. A livestream of the Adios Day card, produced by the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association (MSOA), will be available on the MSOA’s Facebook and YouTube channels as well as Meadows Live! First post is noon.

Max Liroff was a good friend of Casey Horowitz, whose brother Brandon and father Bob bred and own Mysweetboymax and honored their late family friend by naming their horse for him. At two, though, it wasn’t clear the son of Sweet Lou and Faster Faster would live up to expectations. He earned nearly $62,000 and took a mark of 1:52.1, but wasn’t facing or beating top competition.

“He was a little immature,” says his trainer, Sam DePinto. “I knew he would be a late bloomer. The more he does it, the more he gets the idea what he’s supposed to do. He has no physical issues, so I think he’ll be a very nice horse.”

He showed how racy he’s become in his Adios elimination when, dismissed at 42-1, he rallied inside to finish second to Hellabalou, beaten two lengths and individually timed in 1:49.3.

DePinto is no stranger to this territory. In 2010, his horse We Will See, finished fourth in the Adios final by challenging for the lead down the backside but tiring in the lane, beaten only a half length by winner Delmarvalous. That’s not the kind of trip DePinto wants Saturday.

“I would have to believe he needs to be up close and get good fractions and a covered-up trip. If he can get that, he has a heckuva shot, considering the way he raced last Saturday.”

Mysweetboymax is eligible for most major late-season stakes; DePinto and the Horowitz and Liroff families have several reasons for expecting big things.

“He’s maturing, and he’s maturing at the right time,” DePinto says. “He might turn around and start winning some of the big ones. Bob Horowitz wants everyone to know that Max Liroff fought like hell to beat that cancer. This horse races with Max’s heart.”

(Meadows Standardbred Owners Association)

July 29, 2021 - 9:11 pmHow can you not want to root

How can you not want to root for Max? GO MAX GO!!!!

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