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Harness racing’s richest pacer takes on Breeders Crown winner in American-National
Friday, November 06, 2015 - from the Balmoral Park Publicity Department

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Crete, IL --- Saturday night's (Nov. 7) $136,500 American-National for older pacers at Balmoral Park will see Foiled Again, the richest Standardbred of all-time, butt heads with this year’s Breeders Crown victor, Always B Miki.

Only four other horses were dropped in the box to vie against these two standouts.

The seemingly-indefatigable Foiled Again, now just two months away from celebrating his 12th birthday and also a Breeders Crown winner, will leave from post five with regular driver Yannick Gingras in the sulky for trainer Ron Burke. The son of Dragon Again, out of the Artsplace mare In A Safe Place, has racked up $7,281,913 in one of the most stellar careers ever in the sport of harness racing.

 
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Foiled Again will be looking to add to his $7.28 million bankroll in Saturday's American-National.

Despite being named after cartoon villain Snidely Whiplash’s favorite saying of “Curses, foiled again!” by his breeder Barbara Matthews, Foiled Again has bested every hurdle set before him. Owned by Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi and JJK Stables (Joseph Koury, Joseph Koury Jr. and Kevin Koury), Foiled Again earned the majority of his money after his 6-year-old season.

Co-owner Bruscemi, of Cannonsburg, Pa., once remarked that “to find another horse like Foiled Again would be like saying you want to find the next Michael Jordan. It’s unreasonable.”

If Foiled Again could speak, he’d likely say “True That!” with a plethora of accomplishments to his credit that few pacers ever attain. For instance, he’s the only harness horse to compete strictly in North America and earn more than $1 million for three consecutive seasons (2011, 2012, 2013). He was named the 2011 Dan Patch Pacer of the Year by the U.S. Harness Writer’s Association -- the only pacer older than four ever to earn that honor -- and his Breeders Crown win -- having captured the pinnacle event for older horses as a 9-year-old -- was the oldest ever in Breeders Crown history for a pacer.

Foiled Again also holds the record for the most miles paced in 1:55 or faster and as a 9-year-old rocketed to a winning mile in 1:48 at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, setting a world record for the fastest mile ever paced by an older horse on a five-eighths-mile oval.

He’s a three-time winner of Northfield Park’s Battle of Lake Erie and one of only a handful of Standardbreds to have a Breyer model created and sold in his honor.

“He’s a horse that never ceases to amaze you and he’s not one to ever be underestimated,” said Gingras. “He always shows up and never gives you less than 200 percent.”

Besides these accomplishments, the bay gelding has also won the Ben Franklin Pace, the Canadian Pacing Derby, the Levy Memorial, the Quillen Memorial, the Molson Pace, the TVG Championship Series and most recently took the $165,000 Hoosier Park Pacing Derby in a wire-to-wire, 1:50.4 triumph with Gingras at the lines on Oct. 30 at that Indiana venue.

Foiled Again’s younger rival, the 4-year-old Always B Miki, is unbeaten this year in just three starts, but all have been impressive victories for the team of trainer Jimmy Takter, driver David Miller and owners Bluewood Stable, Roll The Dice Stable, and Christina Takter.

Lifetime, the son of Always A Virgin-Art Stopper-Artsplace has won 17 of 34 races and earned $1,154,366. His last victory was a near gate-to-wire effort in the $400,000 Breeders Crown Pace that saw him stop the timer in 1:49.3.

“This horse has a heck of a back story,” said Takter. “He was supplemented to the Breeders Crown last year at three and won his elimination, then had to be scratched from the final.”

Always B Miki has more than made up for that unfortunate twist of fate as a sophomore, when he had to be scratched from harness racing’s biggest event. It was discovered at the time that he had fractured a pastern bone, which resulted in him having surgery and substantial time away from the racetrack.

Partnered with Takter over the winter, Always B Miki began prepping for his 4-year-old campaign when he fractured the opposite pastern bone, which necessitated more time off to recover.

He did not return to the races until Oct. 3, when he notched a 1:49 mile at Hoosier Park, drawing off by 5-1/4 lengths in an Indiana Sires Stake. After that he headed to Woodbine where he swept both his Breeders Crown elimination and final with impressive efforts.

Also in this American-National line-up are Foiled Again’s stablemates Bettor’s Edge (a winner of $1,580,300 lifetime) and Ultimate Beachboy (a winner of $425,593 from 18 career victories). Joe Seekman harnesses $723,502-winner Let’s Drink On It, while Chris Oakes sends out million-dollar earner Luck Be Withyou from the rail.


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