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Resolve victorious in epic Maple Leaf Trot
Saturday, September 17, 2016 - by Mark McKelvie, WEG Communications

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Campbellville, ON --- Resolve turned in a game effort to come away with 1:51.4 victory in the C$632,000 Maple Leaf Trot Saturday night (Sept. 17) at Mohawk Racetrack. The 5-year-old stallion went toe-to-toe with the outstanding mare Hannelore Hanover for the final half-mile and ultimately wore down the powerhouse to score a 1-1/2 victory for Swedish native and trainer/driver Ake Svanstedt.

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Resolve bests Hannelore Hanover and Shake It Cerry to capture the Maple Leaf Trot at Mohawk Racetrack on Saturday evening.

Resolve, who finished second in last year’s Maple Leaf Trot, left from the rail and got away third, while Hannelore Hanover released Musical Rhythm to the lead at the opening quarter-mile in :26.4. Driver Yannick Gingras wasted little time circling Hannelore Hanover back to the front in the second quarter-mile and the trotting mare led the field by the half in :55.3.

Svanstedt started up Resolve nearing that juncture and immediately confronted the leader moving into the final turn. Hannelore Hanover and Resolve dueled to three-quarters in 1:23 and continued their battle into the lane. The Svanstedt trainee had no quit and finally edged by the gutsy mare in deep stretch for the win.

“He’s a really great horse and it was difficult today,” said Svanstedt following Resolve’s triumph. “He (left) very fast and then he was first-over the second half, so he did a very good job.”

A son of Muscle Hill, Resolve was last year’s O’Brien Award winner for top older trotter in Canada. He is well-traveled this season, as he raced in Sweden’s biggest race, the Elitlopp, back in May and was second.

Owned by Hans Enggren of Abbottstown, Pa., Resolve now has 14 career victories and over $1.7 million earned. The 5-year-old stallion scored his fourth victory of the season Saturday to bring his seasonal earnings to over C$700,000.

Hannelore Hanover, a 4-year-old mare, was a $45,000 supplemental entry to the Maple Leaf Trot. The Ron Burke trainee entered Saturday’s rich final off an impressive elimination victory and had only one loss in 15 prior starts this season.

“She raced very good,” acknowledged Svanstedt. “She’s just a 4-year-old and a mare. She’s very good.”

Saturday’s clash was the first meeting between Resolve and Hannelore Hanover. Although there is no upcoming meeting scheduled between the two star trotters, racing fans will certainly be hoping to see a rematch sooner rather than later.

Svanstedt noted that he isn’t sure what is next for Resolve, but has an idea of where he hopes to race.

“We hope he’ll be invited to the International Trot (at Yonkers Raceway)," he said.

The 5-year-old mare Shake It Cerry finished third in Saturday’s event, while locally trained trotters Flanagan Memory and Lookslikeachpndale rounded out the top five finishers. Swedish trotter Nahar, who is owned by Daniel and Henrik Sedin of the National Hockey League’s Vancouver Canucks, broke stride on the final turn and finished 10th.

The wagering public was split between Resolve and Hannelore Hanover, as they went off as even-money co-favorites. Resolve returned $4.30, $2.50 and $2.20, while the $2 exacta paid $8.40.

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