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Miller and McWicked are on a roll heading into Adios
Thursday, July 24, 2014 - by Ken Weingartner, Harness Racing Communications

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Ken Weingartner
Freehold, NJ --- David Miller was familiar with McWicked entering this season, but the colt’s performance this year has gotten the Hall of Fame driver to sit up and take notice.

It doesn’t hurt, of course, that Miller now has the best seat for such a thing -- in the sulky behind the horse.

McWicked brings a three-race win streak into Saturday’s $400,000 Delvin Miller Adios for 3-year-old pacers at The Meadows. He starts from post two and is the 7-5 morning line favorite.

Chris Gooden photo
McWicked won his Delvin Miller Adios elimination in 1:50.4 over a sloppy track.

Last weekend, McWicked won his Adios elimination by 3-1/4 lengths over At Press Time in 1:50.4 on a track that had been downgraded from “good” to “sloppy” prior to the race. Earlier elim winners were Somewhere in L A, in 1:50, and Let’s Drink On It, in 1:50.2.

In his previous start on June 28, McWicked won the Max C. Hempt Memorial in a world-record 1:47.3 at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. For the year, he has won five of eight races, finished second on two occasions, and earned $418,830 for owner Ed James’ S S G Stables and trainer Casie Coleman.

“I thought he raced very well,” Miller said about the Adios elim. “He hadn’t raced since the Hempt, he was off three weeks. I know they had worked him a mile in (1):56 out here (at White Birch Farm), but it’s still not racing. I thought he was very sharp and got over the track great. It’s all pretty positive.”

McWicked, a son of stallion McArdle out of the mare Western Sahara, won three of 10 races and earned $179,617 in 2013 while racing in the stable of trainer Julie Miller. He was purchased for $210,000 by James in November at the Standardbred Mixed Sale and sent to Coleman for his 3-year-old campaign.

The colt has won four of six races since Miller became his regular driver in late May. He won his elimination for the North America Cup and finished fourth in the final -- his only off-the-board finish this year.

“I knew the horse from last year,” Miller said. “I didn’t really pay much attention to him, to be honest with you, but I knew who the horse was and he’s impressed me this year.

“His elimination win in the North America Cup, I was very impressed with him, and his win in the final of the Hempt, you couldn’t ask for a horse to race better than he did. He’s really stepped up to the plate in his 3-year-old season.”

Miller will be trying to win the Adios for the second time in his career. He captured the race in 2008 with Shadow Play. Coleman is looking for her first Adios victory.

“I’m most impressed with the way (McWicked) can race,” Miller said. “He’s very easy to get along with; his manners are superb on the track. He can carry his speed a very long way and that’s the most impressive thing about him.”

Following is the field in post order with drivers, trainers and morning line: 1. Cammikey, Brian Zendt, Bill Zendt, 8-1; 2. McWicked, David Miller, Casie Coleman, 7-5; 3. At Press Time, Matt Kakaley, Ron Burke, 6-1; 4. Beat The Drum, Ron Pierce, Staffan Lind, 20-1; 5. Somewhere In L A, Brett Miller, Jimmy Takter, 5-1; 6. Stevensville, Mark MacDonald, Ray Schnittker, 20-1; 7. Let’s Drink On It, Tyler Smith, Joe Seekman, 7-2; 8. Bushwacker, Dave Palone, Chris Ryder, 10-1; 9. Carracci Hanover, Yannick Gingras, Ron Burke, 15-1.

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