DELAWARE-connected horses finished 1-2-3 in last week’s top event, the $500,000 Battle of the Brandywine at Pocono Downs. With half of a field of eight top three-year-old pacers either owned or trained by Delaware horsemen, The Wiggle It Jiggleit victory highlighted an outstanding 50th anniversary of harness racing at Pocono Downs, located near Wilkes Barre, Pa.
Wiggle It Jiggleit, trained by Clyde Francis, and Wakazashi Hanover, conditioned by JoAnn King, finished first and second in the 1:48 victory. Both pacers train at Harrington Raceway.
The third-place finisher was Dude’s The Man, driven by Dover Downs perennial leading driver, Corey Callahan for owners M&L Of Delaware and Victoria Dickenson of Greenville, near Wilmington. Yankee Bounty, co-owned by Harrington horseman Frank Chick was sixth.
George Teague Inc. owns Wiggle It Jiggleit driven by 24-year-old Montrell Teague has now won nearly $1.5 million in purses and is expected to return to first in harness racing’s Top 10 rating.
Remember Me VK, a Delaware-sired pacer and former Delaware Standardbred Breeders Fund champion, owned by Sharon Wyatt and Robin West and Ron Benton of Lincoln, Del., driven by Montrell Teague for trainer Bob Wyatt, was timed faster than 1:50 in his mile but finished out-of-the-money in a $200,000 Battle of the Brandywine consolation.
Corey Callahan steered Bettor Be Steppin, bred by Seaford, Del. auto magnate Fred Hertrich, and trained by University of Delaware-grad, Joe Holloway, to victory in the $350,000 Valley Forge for three-year-old filly pacers.
Another local favorite the remarkable trotter JL Cruze, co-owned by longtime Dover Downs horseman Ken Wood, saw his long win streak come to an end in the $100,000 Sebastian K Trot, finishing fourth, his first start in more than a month.
Smyrna horseman Daryl Bier’s two-horse stable, raced well in their starts. trotter, Wind Of The North and pacer Bandolito, the Dover Downs Horse of the Meet last season, raced gamely and finished third in the $50,000 USTA Invitational pace while trotter Wind Of The North was fifth in the $100,000 Sebastian K Trot.
On Sunday at Vernon Downs, stakes seasoned Table Talk, owned by Frank Deliberti’s The Wiz Kids Stable of Dover, finished fifth in the $194,000 Artiscape mares pacers.
- MICHAEL BACHRAD