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Antonacci hopeful Mambo Lindy hopes to make the Spirit of Massachusetts cut
Wednesday, July 12, 2017 - by Tim Bojarski, for Plainridge Park

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Plainville, MA --- As the $250,000 Spirit of Massachusetts Trot draws near only nine of the 38 eligible horses will go postward based on the highest combined money earnings from 2016 and 2017 from those who declare. One horse that is looking to make the field is Plainridge Park regular Mambo Lindy, whose connections look forward to the opportunity.

Mambo Lindy (Donato Hanover-Rum Boogie) had no juvenile stakes engagements and as a result was unraced at two and lightly started at three. However, the time taken to bring him along has paid dividends now, as he has developed into a first-class Open trotter.

 
Photo courtesy of Lindy Farm
Assistant trainer Domenico Cecere and Frank Antonacci, with Mambo Lindy.

Frank Antonacci trains Mambo Lindy and he is no stranger to good trotters. His Lindy Farm lineage includes 50 years of harness racing tradition that includes ownership of Hambletonian winners Lindy’s Pride, Speedy Crown, Probe, Harmonious, and Victory Dream.

The 33-year-old Antonacci has been training since 2004 and has 499 conditioning wins, a lifetime UTR of .342 and just under $10 million in purses as a result. He is responsible for developing a host of top trotters including millionaire Crazed and most recently International Moni. He is hopeful Mambo Lindy gets the chance to take on the best older trotters right in his own backyard.

“Mambo Lindy started out as a non-winner of nothing at Plainridge and worked his way up the ladder there. He was un-staked at two and three so we had the forced luxury of having nothing to get him ready for, so we kind of just let him come along as he would. We have always raced him every other week and he has turned into just one heck of a horse,” said Antonacci.

In 31 lifetime starts Mambo Lindy has 19 wins, 17 of which were at Plainridge. This year he's won five out of six starts at The Ridge and the one he lost was by a nose in his first outing of the year.

Consistent success in overnight events is tough enough; taking on the best trotters in North America is another issue. But it doesn’t seem to be one for this trainer.

“I think he would be more than competitive especially on his home track; I think he would stack up very well against those horses. We have a short ship from the farm so his daily routine would not be affected and he knows that paddock and the track, so to him it would just be another day at work. I wouldn’t want Mambo Lindy sitting on my back turning for home at Plainridge,” said Antonacci.

If he did start in the Spirit of Massachusetts he could face very tough competition like Resolve, Crazy Wow and Obrigado, who are all likely participants. But it wouldn’t be the first time Mambo Lindy competed against the best trotters around.

In 2016, Mambo Lindy raced in the Vincennes Invitational on Hambletonian day at the Meadowlands and was second guessed from the draw to going off at 75-1. But Antonacci knew he would be more than a tough opponent and the trainee backed up his mentor 100 percent.

After getting away seventh and then shuffled back to eighth by the top of the stretch, Mambo Lindy had a wall of horses ahead of him with nowhere to shake loose. But his driver Tim Tetrick was able to find an opening behind eventual winner Melady’s Monet (Jason Bartlett) in deep stretch and followed him right across the wire. Although Mambo Lindy was raging with trot, he never got the opportunity to advance on an open track and finished a locked-in third, with his chin over Bartlett’s shoulder.

The race went in 1:51.4 and Mambo Lindy was timed in 1:52, the fastest he has ever trotted. Plus in that race he beat Hambletonian champion Pinkman and Natural Herbie as well as Wings Of Royalty and Centurion ATM, who are both eligible for the Spirit of Massachusetts Trot.

“I am looking forward to racing Mambo Lindy in the biggest harness race in the history of Massachusetts but we have to see if he makes the cut first. It would be an awful shame if he didn’t qualify because he is definitely a hometown hero at Plainridge. It would be nice to see a Plainridge regular compete in that race,” said Antonacci. “The Spirit of Massachusetts Trot is just one example of the whole harness racing success story in Massachusetts and it’s exciting. I hope we can build on that momentum and have more events like this in the future. New England harness racing has such a storied history; it’s nice to see the sport here become relevant nationally once again.”

For more information and updates on the Spirit of Massachusetts Trot, visit www.plainridgeparkcasino.com and hit the "Racing" tab.


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