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Banking on Moonshiner Hanover
Friday, June 02, 2017 - by Ken Weingartner, Harness Racing Communications

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Ken Weingartner
Freehold, NJ --- Moonshiner Hanover did not win many races last year, but his ability to make money won over trainer Chris Beaver.

Beaver, who owns Moonshiner Hanover with Synerco Ventures and Bill Manes, saw the colt win one of 12 races last year yet bank $263,101. He ranked sixth in earnings among all 2-year-old male trotters and was the only 2-year-old trotter in the top 25 with fewer than three victories.

Moonshiner Hanover aided his cause by finishing second six times, including in the Breeders Crown, Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship, and a division of the Bluegrass Stakes. The aforementioned races were three of the colt’s four most lucrative starts of the season.

“He always seemed like a nice horse, but to make that much money and not really win any races was a big surprise,” Beaver said. “He just always seemed to show up going for a lot of money.”

Chris Gooden photo
Moonshiner Hanover has banked $273,101 in his career.

On Saturday, Moonshiner Hanover will show up for the second of three divisions of the Currier & Ives Stakes for 3-year-old trotters at The Meadows in western Pennsylvania. Moonshiner Hanover is one of five Hambletonian eligible horses in the $39,808 division, along with Phi Alpha, Giveitgasandgo, Affair Of Honor, and Snowstorm Hanover.

Moonshiner Hanover, who will have Aaron Merriman in the sulky, is the 7-2 second choice on the morning line behind returning Pennsylvania Sire Stakes champion Giveitgasandgo at 2-1. Corey Callahan will drive Giveitgasandgo for trainer John Butenschoen.

The $1 million Hambletonian is Aug. 5 at the Meadowlands in New Jersey.

“I think he’ll be in the bigger races,” Beaver said. “He hasn’t shown the qualities of a great horse yet, but I’ve had some horses that have raced competitively in that top group of 3-year-olds and he’s a lot like them. He looks like he’ll go with them. We’ve got him staked enough, so if he can show up like he did last year he could make a lot of money. He’s the kind of horse that I think will rise to the level of his competition.”

Moonshiner Hanover won his seasonal debut May 22 in a division of the Pennsylvania Stallion Series at The Meadows. The colt had offseason OCD removal in his left-hind ankle, which slowed his return to action and prompted Beaver to skip the first round of the Sire Stakes on May 20 in favor of the Stallion Series.

Moonshiner Hanover won by 1-1/2 lengths in 1:55.3.

“I tried to bring him back without rushing him too much,” Beaver said. “I think he raced well enough his first start. He got a little lazy when he got to the front, but he still raced well.”

Moonshiner Hanover is a son of stallion Andover Hall out of the stakes-winning mare Madam Hooch. He is a half-brother to stakes-winner Gabe The Bear Dean and was purchased for $27,000 at the 2015 Standardbred Horse Sale.

Beaver also will send out Fraser Ridge, Andy M, and Always A Good Time in the Currier & Ives. None are eligible to the Hambletonian, but Andy M is the 5-2 second choice behind 7-5 Sortie in the $39,808 third division while Always A Good Time is 5-1 in the same split. Fraser Ridge is 5-1 in the $38,808 first division, where High Glider is the 5-2 choice.

Fraser Ridge and Always A Good Time are sons of former Beaver Stable star Triumphant Caviar.

“I have a special place in my heart for my Caviars; they’re like my grandkids,” Beaver said with a laugh. “Always A Good Time seems to have really come back a lot better horse this year. I’m going into these races like I like to go into them. I like to have a horse that’s 4-1, 5-1, 9-2; you’re in the ballpark.”

Hambletonian eligible horses in the Currier & Ives first division are Meme Hanover, Muay Hanover, Stealth Hanover, and Simply Volo.

Hambletonian eligible horses in the third division are Brand New Key, Dover Dan, Sortie, and Thisguyisonfire.

For Saturday’s complete card at The Meadows, click here. Post time is 1:05 p.m. for the first race and the Currier & Ives divisions are races one, four and eight.

A look at open stakes for 3-year-old male trotters
and state-restricted stakes featuring Hambletonian eligibles

Date – Track – Event – First – Second – Third
May 6 – Freehold – Dexter Cup – Lord Cromwell – Gustavo Fring – Southwind Cobra
May 19 – Meadowlands – NJSS – Long Tom – Yes Mickey – Deacon Tony
May 19 – Meadowlands – NJSS – What The Hill – Southwind Cobra – New Jersey Viking
May 20 – The Meadows – PASS – Sortie – Giveitgasandgo – High Glider
May 20 – The Meadows – PASS – Andy M – Gustavo Fring – Stealth Hanover
May 20 – The Meadows – PASS – Common Parlance – Brown Bear – Brand New Key
May 29 – Vernon – NYSS – Stick With Me Kid – Bill’s Man – Top Flight Angel
May 29 – Vernon – NYSS – Devious Man – Lord Cromwell – Aces And Eights
May 29 – Vernon – NYSS – Enterprise – Swell Chap – Meetmeinthemiddle

Hambletonian eligible in bold


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