09/02/2016 3:15PM

Freehold: Southwind Hope, New Jersey Viking win stakes for trotters

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World Wide Racing Photos
Southwind Hope led at every call on her way to taking the Helen Smith at Freehold

New Jersey Sire Stakes champion Southwind Hope won the $30,000 Helen Smith for 3-year-old trotters, and Reynolds winner New Jersey Viking dominated the $29,000 Harold Dancer for 2-year-old trotters on Friday afternoon at Freehold Raceway.

In the Smith, Southwind Hope (Andy Miller) never had an anxious moment, trotting through stations of 28 4/5, 1:00 1/5, and 1:29 2/5 on her way to a 1:58 3/5 tally as the 1-5 favorite.  She beat Unica Steed (Jim Marohn Jr.) by 2 3/4 lengths, with Southwind Venus (Marcus Melander) back in the third position.

Southwind Hope, a daughter of Muscle Hill, is trained by Julie Miller for owners Andy Miller Stable Inc., Little E LLC., and Larry Dumain.  This was her eighth career victory, and she has now earned $178,973.  She returned $2.60 to win.

One race later the rookies stepped on to the track for the Dancer, and New Jersey Viking (Steve Smith) made his way to the lead from the outside post six, reaching the opening quarter in 28 3/5.  Pocket sitter Deacon Tony (Joe Bongiorno) was rank in that position, so he was sent after New Jersey Viking just before the 58 second half, but that move was rebuffed quickly, and New Jersey Viking began to open up on the lead at the 1:26 4/5 three-quarters.

New Jersey Viking continued to pour it on in the final quarter and reported home with a 9 1/2 length victory in 1:57 3/5, just missing Chapter Seven's track record for a 2-year-old colt trotter by a fifth of a second.  Long Tom (Melander) checked in second, and 1-2 favorite Fly On (Miller) wound up third.

Ake Svanstedt trains New Jersey Viking, a son of Muscle Hill, for owners Knutsson Trotting Inc. and Little E LLC.  He has now won half of his six starts, and he has earned $83,768.  New Jersey Viking, who was taken out of the Standardbred Horse Sale in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, for $77,000, is out of the Broadway Hall mare Hall Of Wishes.  She earned over $207,000 in her career.  Sent off at 5-2, he returned $7.60 for the win.