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Horse slaughter in Illinois
|Balmoral Park (6/30/09)
Contact: Tom Kelley
FOX VALLEY LOVER CONTINUES TO ROLL WITH ISOBA STAKE WIN
Continuing her money-making ways for owners Paula Smith and James Runyan, Fox Valley Lover trotted right by her rivals in the late going to record a three-quarter-length victory in a career best of 1:55.3.
Handled in the usual fashion by veteran Dale Hiteman, Fox Valley Lover was placed in mid-pack as Fox Valley Strata (Tyler Buter) and Queen Creek (Dean Magee) battled through tough opening splits of 28.3 and 57.0.
Heading around the far turn Fox Valley Strata came to a screeching halt, jamming up several horses that had been trotting along the pylons. By that time Hiteman had Fox Valley Lover out and moving, and the daughter of Vaporize-Love You More was advancing steadily while following the live cover of D Lee More (Mike Oosting) as the ladies hit the three-quarter-mile station in 1:26.4.
After watching D Lee More grab command from a tiring Overt (Josh Sutton) with an eighth of a mile to go, Hiteman tipped Fox Valley Lover off her cover and the Joel Smith-trained miss responded beautifully, trotting right by her rivals with a slick 28.2 final quarter to get the victory. D Lee More turned in a solid effort to finish second while Queen Creek overcame the traffic problems on the far turn to finish third, some 10 lengths behind the winner.
The victory was the fifth in sixth starts this season for Fox Valley Lover, who returned $5.20, $3.20 and $2.20. A model of consistency throughout her career, she now sports a record of 10 wins, three seconds and two thirds in 20 starts with earnings of $141,818.
The stakes action continues for trotters on Wednesday night as a total of 14 state-bred three-year-old colts slug it out in a pair of $14,455 ISOBA Stake splits, which have been carded as races four and eight.
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