LEBANON, OH. – Like ageless wonder Tom Brady and the world’s finest wines, a lot of good harness horses seem to get better when they should be past their prime. The current Miami Valley Claim To Fame Series for $20,000 horses and geldings is a prime example.
Of the three first leg divisions totaling 25 horses, ten were ten years old or older. Eight of the veteran pacers have eclipsed the 30 wins plateau, while the other pair have 29 and 19 victories.
The double digit aged stalwarts almost swept the three divisions, with two of them winning and a third narrowly defeated—by a nine year old!
American Virgin (Tyler Smith, 1:54.3, 10 years old, $18.40 to win) triumphed over Rock Solid Image (Trevor Smith) and Lucifers Legend A (Brett Miller) in the first split. The Always A Virgin gelding’s lifetime scoreboard now reads 226 starts with 41 wins, 42 seconds and 32 thirds good for $754,718 in purse earnings.
Not to be outdone, 12-year-old Major Bucks (Trace Tetrick) captured the second division, narrowly defeating 10-year-old Evergreen Elite (Miller) in 1:54. Shanghai Bobby (Chris Page) was next across the line. The winning son of Art Major now sports a career scoreboard of 36-48-59 in 299 starts. Entered by leading trainer Tyler George, Major Bucks will make his next start for Burke Racing and Weaver Bruscemi LLC, who purchased him via the claim box.
Owner William Cantrell and trainer Jeff Brewer, who campaign American Virgin, got a second series victory with nine-year-old Highlandbeachycove (Tyler Smith, 1:52.4) who nipped Hawk’s Red Chief (Dan Noble), who is two years the winner’s senior. Youngster Tick’s A Yankin (age 5) secured the show share of the $20,000 purse.
Other veteran race horses who competed in the $20,000 claiming series were Cantescapemydesire (age 10, 32 wins, $234,385 in earnings), Sportskeeper (10, 32, $566,991), Armaboybluechipboy N (10, 19, $230,432), Fools Desire (10, 37, $377,017), Vegas Rocks (10, 43, $390,646) and Rangers Sureshot (11, 48, $483,971).
Racing resumes Wednesday (Feb. 2) at Miami Valley. Post time is 4:05 p.m.

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