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Illinois County Fairs
Contact: Timothy M. Jones for the Brown County Fair
LONGSHOT PREVAILS IN TASER GUN PACE
Constant Change, a two-time Taser Gun Pace winner, bolted towards the lead from post 5 for driver Tom Simmons as the starting gate’s wings folded. Mike Cox had Hot N Sporty’s RPM gauge redlined as that duo sped from post 3. Walter Brown was also in a rush for the lead from post 1 for driver Brandon Simpson. The only problem: 3 horses in the first turn trying to occupy the same piece of Mt. Sterling real estate.
Constant Change on the outside, Walter Brown on the inside, and Hot N Sporty sandwiched in between; the dicey situation was resolved only by some expert reinsmanship between drivers as they deftly avoided a worst possible scenario.
Constant Change and Hot N Sporty continued their speed duel on the front end into the backstretch, but it was the former who finally wrestled the lead just before reaching the quarter pole in 28 seconds.
Sprinting towards the half, Constant Change remained on the point, when Sam Widger then called with Fox Valley Whiz, and Hot N Sporty in tow. Widger urged his mount forward to a half length lead, although parked, as the field passed that station in :57.2.
Fox Valley Whiz whizzed down the backstretch of the half mile oval, opening lengths on Hot N Sporty whose fuel gauge had reached empty, as all-the-while Cox worked desperately, but futilely, to keep the horse alive.
Kissmekissmekissme (Hart Walker) finished third.
Widger, who drove three winners on the evening card, commented following the race that it was a gamble to come first up at the half the way he did. But the Canton, Illinois native and Chicago driving colony member, felt at the time, it was the only move he could make to give his horse a chance for the win.
Fox Valley Whiz is a seven-year-old Incredible Finale-sired gelding from the mare Mystical Year. Owned by Mt. Sterling resident Dave Clinard, he returned a whopping $400 for the lone win ticket.
Hart Walker brushed the former Bob Walker trainee before the Brown County Fair grandstand, reminiscent of the 2002 race in which he guided Taser Gun to a 1:53.4 win, and establishing that mark as the fastest in Illinois county fair history.
Mt. Sterling’s half mile oval, if the aforementioned instances weren’t enough excitement, has a pair of new trotting marks for two-year-olds.
Third race winner Halls Of Gold, in rein to Jamaica Patton, reset the mark for colt trotters as they crossed the wire in 2:04.2. Also trained by Patton for owner Jerry Mims of Vardaman, Ms, the Bands Gold Chip gelding overcame a break behind the starting gate in which he spotted the field ten lengths before settling down to set the new standard.
Itzalusive broke the minutes-old track standard in race 4. Sam Widger guided the Rosemont Principal-sired filly for owners Ron and Carol Cox of Huntsville, Illinois to the new 2:03.4 plateau for freshman trotters regardless of gender.
Itzalusive first had to hold off a backstretch charge by Spread The Chips (Jamaica Patton) before pulling away in the lane for an open-length win and track record.
The 9-5 morning line favorite has now won 3 of 6 starts, with earnings that exceed $7000.
Mt. Sterling, Illinois is located 65 miles west of Springfield, Illinois on US 24. For more information, please contact Speed Superintendent Ed Teefey’s race office at 217-773-3930, visit the Fair’s web site at http://www.browncofair.com, or call the fair office at (217) 773-3939.
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