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Venier Hanover, Cruiserwillwin, Bet On Tom impress at Meadville
Sunday, July 16, 2017 - by Publicity Office, Pennsylvania Fair Harness Horsemen’s Association

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Meadville, PA --- After getting rained out on Thursday at Hughesville, the Pennsylvania fair circuit had a dry weekend at the home track of the late great Boots Dunn, the Crawford County Fair in this northwest Pennsylvania city, for a two-day Sire Stakes event on Saturday (July 15) and Sunday (July 16).

Seth Dowling photo
Cruiserwillwin takes the sophomore pace in 2:01.4.

After being photoed out of third in a Pennsylvania Sire Stakes pari-mutuel division on Thursday behind Wild Bill, the full brother to Meadowlands Pace winner Huntsville, Venier Hanover shipped the 366 miles from Chester to Meadville and appeared none the worse for wear, coming back with only two days in between races to take Sunday’s A section of the freshman colt pace Fair Sire Stakes in 2:02.2 for trainer/driver Dave Brickell, who co-owns with Mitchell York.

The Well Said gelding is now three for four at the fairs and five for seven overall, with that quintet of victories tying him for the North American lead among 2-year-olds – a position Brickell knows all too well from his perch behind Camera Lady last year.

Cruiserwillwin, also with just two days in between starts, posted the fastest time for the second straight meet when he won Saturday’s sophomore colt pace A cut with a 2:01.4 triumph for trainer/driver Todd Schadel, who co-owns with Christine Schadel. The altered son of Yankee Cruiser had a good tightener two starts back at Gratz, where he went 1:25.3 to the three-quarters, only to tire a little late as Ginger Tree Marty missed the track record by a tick with a 1:55.2 win. The trips have been kinder to Cruiserwillwin since, and he’s made the most of the opportunities.

In terms of prime speed with respect to gait, possibly the most impressive winner at Meadville was the Tom Ridge sophomore colt Bet On Tom, who trotted in 2:03.1 to defeat two tough horses in Gee Wizz George and Lima Moonshine. Cory Kreiser steered the winner for trainer for trainer Gary Johnston and owner Dr. William Solomon.

Other horses who added to lustrous fair records by winning at Meadville in A Sire Stakes action included 3-year-old trotting filly All Set Lets Go, undefeated in four starts; 3-year-old pacing filly Gemalous, a win in all but one of her six fair starts; and Grapple Hanover, now three for four in the 2-year-old colt trotting ranks.

Gemalous combined with Keystone Nikki for a Shaw brothers sweep of the 3-year-old pacing filly A section; Grapple Hanover was the second half of Sunday’s “Daily Double” behind the filly Crazed Creek, giving trainer/driver Wayne Long a sweep of the freshman trots.

Chris Shaw guided seven winners to Victory Lane on the weekend, including five on Saturday, to lead at Meadville and expand his seasonal advantage to 28-17 over Roger Hammer.

Jason Shaw and Wayne Long each harnessed four successful starters at Meadville to tie for meet honors; Shaw’s four-bagger brings him within one, 18-17, of circuit leader Roger Hammer.

Hammer and Sam Beegle will be honored by their hometown and the Keystone Chapter of the U.S. Harness Writers Association just before the races start at the circuit’s next stop, the Bedford Fair. Beegle and Hammer will jointly receive the Mary Lib Miller Award, the highest honor of the Keystone communicators, for longtime outstanding service to harness racing on Monday (July 24) at 5:15 p.m., 15 minutes before the first race of the opening card of that 2-day stand.

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