LEBANON, OH – The first of four $40,000 James K. Hackett Memorial championship races for Ohio-sired sophomore trotters and pacers was featured on Monday (April 12) at Miami Valley Raceway.
Swizzle Hanover (Mike Wilder), a daughter of Uncle Peter, was impressive winning in 1:55.4 over Ozma (Aaron Merriman) and Magic Credit Card (Brett Miller). Despite a second place finish in last week’s elimination heat, the public sent Swizzle Hanover to post as the 3-5 favorite and she looked the part throughout the championship tilt. Wilder patiently marched his filly forward before clearing to the front as the :28.2 first quarter beam was tripped. From there he rated a mile with splits of :57.3 and 1:26.1 while elimination winner Ozma (Aaron Merriman) sat nose-to-helmet on his back. Despite his attempt to rally Ozma in the stretch, Merriman couldn’t get any closer as the winner crossed the finish line in 1:55.4 with a margin of just over a length on the runnerup.
As a two-year-old Swizzle Hanover won two races and earned $75,575 for her owner-trainer Randy Bendis and his partner Reed Broadway. To start her sophomore season, she has won three races out of four, plus the second in the Hackett elimination, and has pushed her earnings to $108,125.
In addition to Swizzle Hanover, Ozma and Magic Credit Card, I Am Winning (Chris Page) also earned an automatic berth in the $50,000 Scarlet & Gray Invitational at Miami Valley on Friday, April 23. The remainder of that field will be announced when it is determined.
The $40,000 James K. Hackett Memorial championship race for state-bred sophomore trotting colts will be featured on Tuesday (April 13) as the ninth race on a 14-race program that starts at 2:05 p.m.
Elimination heat winners Winning Ticket (Merriman) and Panzano (Dan Noble) have been installed as morning line favorites, followed by Tango With Me (Ronnie Wrenn Jr.), Credit Ace (Brett Miller) and Lockbox (Chris Page). Three of the five favorites hail from the Chris Beaver stable, while the other pair are members of the Ron Burke brigade.

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