Day At The Track

WIJI sixth, Billy Badger N upsets

02:02 PM 20 Dec 2019 NZDT
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Billy Badger N, harness racing Wakizashi Hanover, harness racing Slick Tony, harness racing
Billy Badger N (#7) wins by a long nose
Wakizashi Hanover (#2) wins by a long nose
Slick Tony (#8) wins by a long nose

Wiggle It Jiggleit had another tough mile in his harness racing comeback trail, finishing sixth in the $30,000 Open Handicap Pace Thursday at Dover Downs. The 12th race feature was won by New Zealander Billy Badger N in an upset score.

Wiggle It Jiggleit and driver Jim Morand were able to get to the lead by the opening quarter mile in :26 over Bo Mach (Corey Callahan).

Stuck on the outside from the start was the race favorite, Dealt A Winner (George Napolitano, Jr.), who started coming after Wiggle It Jiggleit with Larry Karr (Mike Cole) second-over.

Then in the backstretch, Cole came three-wide with Larry Karr as Quality Bud (Victor Kirby) followed their cover and Larry Karr cleared to challenge Wiggle It Jiggleit at the three-quarters in 1:21.4. Wiggle It Jiggleit began to fade, Larry Karr took the lead and there was Billy Badger N tipping three-wide and coming on.

Quality Bud overtook Larry Karr in the stretch but could not hold off Billy Badger N, who won by a slim nose over Quality Bud with Larry Karr third. The time of the mile was 1:50.

 

It was a lifetime mark for New Zealand import Billy Badger N, a six-year-old gelding by Art Major, who is not only driven by but is also owned by Dexter Dunn. He is trained by Nifty Norman and paid $23.00 to win.

Wakizashi Hanover was reunited with trainer Jim King, Jr and driver Tim Tetrick as they captured the fourth race $15,000 pace in a photo finish.

The seven-year-old gelded son of Dragon Again had been “off-the-shelf” for six months and then qualified and raced in of all place, Truro Raceway in Nova Scotia, Canada (His owners live there). He won his first start and then was off for five months until returning to the King Stable.

Wakizashi Hanover was given a perfect drive by Tetrick. As Bro Hanover (Dexter Dunn) cut the mile, Lyons King (Mike Cole) had the pocket seat through early fractions of :26.4 and :55.1.

Then the action heated up as Abner The Great (George Napolitano, Jr.) came first-up with Wakizashi Hanover second-over past the three-quarters in 1:23.4. On the final turn Wakizashi Hanover tipped three-wide and then it was a five-horse dash to the wire with Wakizashi Hanover winning by a nose over Lyons King with 99-1 long shot Quick Shot (Jonathan Roberts) photo bombing the photo finish for show. The fifth place horse was a half length off the winner.

 

Undefeated in two starts in 2019, Wakizashi Hanover is owned by Bruce Kennedy, Percy Bonnell, Wayne Burley and Jennifer Weeks, all of Nova Scotia. He paid $8.20 to win.

Slick Tony ($4.80) swept three-wide on the backstretch for driver Dexter Dunn, collared pacesetter Late Mail N (George Napolitano, Jr.) and then held off a late charge by Little Ben (Tim Tetrick) by a nose to win the $27,500 Blue Hen Open Pace.

 

It was the 16th win this year for the four-year-old son of No Spin Zone. He covered the one-mile race in 1:50.3 for owner and trainer George Leager of Sudlersville, MD.

By Steve Wolf, for Harnesslink

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