01/18/2016 11:13PM

Harness: Brad Grant buys sale-topper at Meadowlands Mixed Sale

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Ken Weingartner/USTA Photo
Lindy's Tru Grit brought $125,000 as the most expensive horse sold on Monday.

Lindy’s Tru Grit was the sale-topper at Monday’s Tattersalls January Select Mixed Sale at the Meadowlands Racetrack, one of three horses purchased by owner Brad Grant for trainer Ben Wallace as the two friends look to move forward following the Classy Lane Training Centre fire that claimed the lives of 43 horses earlier this month.

The Jan. 4 fire destroyed a barn that housed horses trained by Wallace, Roger Mayotte, Chantal Mitchell, Kris DiCenzo, Dan Lagace, and Floyd Amos. Grant owned four horses killed in the fire, all trained by Wallace, including multiple-stakes-winner Apprentice Hanover.

“I lost a great horse in Apprentice Hanover,” Grant said, referring to the 6-year-old stallion who had earned $983,118 in his career. “I got a lot of comments from horsepeople who thought this was going to be his year. But you get back up and you go back at it. This gets Ben back up and running and racing right away. We’ve known each other for 40 years and he’s probably trained my horses for 20 or 25.

“I wanted a top-end trotter and I think (Lindy’s Tru Grit) was the best one in the sale by far. I think he’s just one step below the great ones. He’ll fit in Toronto; he’ll race real well against the preferred up there. I’m excited about it. I want top-end horses and I think all three of them will be.”

Grant purchased 6-year-old stallion Lindy’s Tru Grit for $125,000. He also purchased 4-year-old female pacer A Plus for $80,000 and 3-year-old male pacer Easy Lover Hanover for $70,000.

Lindy’s Tru Grit, who raced most recently for trainer Julie Miller, has won 10 of 51 races and earned $479,311 in his career. His victories include the 2013 American-National Stakes at age 3. A Plus has won three of 16 races and $51,858 lifetime and the lightly-raced Easy Lover Hanover has won one of four races and $9,300.

A Plus and Easy Lover Hanover were both previously trained by Tony Alagna.

“I talked to Tony about them and he was high on them both,” Grant said. “They’ll fit in classes in Toronto right away. That’s the part we do like. I think the mare could end up being an outstanding mare down the road. We’re excited about both of them.”

Grant said the outpouring of support from the industry following the Classy Lane fire was overwhelming. A GoFundMe page set up by the Central Ontario Standardbred Association has raised more than $365,000 so far.

“It’s been amazing,” Grant said. “It’s just amazing, the outpouring from everywhere. It’s not just locally, it’s everywhere. It’s been tremendous.

“You’ll never get over what you lost. They’re as much your family as they are racehorses. They’re your life. It’s been devastating. But the industry rallied around it. It’s just an amazing industry. You can’t say enough about the people in it. You want to win every race and beat them every night, but when somebody is down on their luck this industry seems to rally around them.”

Two-time Ontario Sire Stakes champion Dont Rush was the day’s second-highest selling horse, going for $100,000 to Delaware-based trainer Josh Green. Dont Rush, a 4-year-old trotting stallion, has won nine of 28 career races and earned $497,975. He was trained previously by Dustin Jones.

“I loved the look of him,” Green said. “I loved the size; he’s just kind of a medium-small horse. I just thought he was well made. I’ve bought some horses from Dustin Jones and he’s a great trainer and does a nice job with them. He helps me out with them. He’s a good guy.

“(Dont Rush) will start out at Dover and we’ll see how it goes from there. But he’ll probably finish out the meet at Dover. It’s always tough buying the 3-year-olds turning 4. There’s always high risk there. But I think the horse has been a pretty consistent horse. The 4-year-old year, our big thing is to just try to protect them.”

Four-year-old trotting stallion Maestro Blue Chip was next on the list of top-selling horses. He was purchased for $90,000 by Richard Poillucci of Massachusetts. The horse, who has won three of 14 races in his career and earned $84,173, will be trained by Jim King Jr. and is being pointed toward April’s Yonkers Raceway/SOA of New York Bonus Trotting Series.

Maestro Blue Chip was trained previously by Trond Smedshammer, who guided the horse to a career-best 1:53 4/5 win on Jan. 8 at the Meadowlands. It was the horse’s first time on Lasix.

“He’s a young, fresh trotter,” said Poillucci, who owns seven horses and was among the owners of late trotting star Modern Family. “Fresh horses are hard to come by. We’ll see how he matures and how he progresses. That was the horse I was looking at. I thought he was the best for what I was looking for.”

Horse --- Sire-Dam --- Buyer --- Consignor --- Price

Lindy’s Tru Grit (6ht) --- Cantab Hall-True Diva --- Bradley Grant --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $125,000

Dont Rush (4ht) --- Infinitif-Color Me Pretty --- Josh Green --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $100,000

Maestro Blue Chip (4ht) --- Credit Winner-Up Front Hotsey --- Richard Poillucci --- Northwood Bloodstock Agency --- $90,000

A Plus (4mp) --- American Ideal-Has An Attitude --- Bradley Grant --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $80,000

Blood Brother (4gp) --- Somebeachsomewhere-Blood Diamond --- Richard Banca --- Northwood Bloodstock Agency --- $80,000

Go Daddy Go (4hp) --- Ponder-Sanfrancine --- Rene Allard --- Northwood Bloodstock Agency --- $80,000

Journeyman (5hp) --- American Ideal-Cosmic Journey --- Mark Ford --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $75,000

Cooperstown (4hp) --- Four Starzzz Shark-American Charm --- Brian & Ira Wallach --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $72,000

Ultimate Beachboy (6gp) --- Somebeachsomewhere-Ultimate Bet --- Rene Allard --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $72,000

Easy Lover Hanover (3cp) --- Somebeachsomewhere-Easy Go Go --- Jeff Ruch, agent --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $70,000

Yankee Bounty (4gp) --- Yankee Cruiser-Bootleg Yankee --- Benita Simmons --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $70,000

Rockin Wizard (6gp) --- Rocknroll Hanover-Please Me Please --- Mike Russo --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $70,000

Yankee Artillery (3gp) --- Somebeachsomewhere-Adept Yankee --- Northwood Bloodstock Agency --- Northwood Bloodstock Agency --- $67,000

Northern Grace (4mt) --- Yankee Glide-Rare Elegance --- Steve Stewart/Hunterton Farm --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $67,000

Medusa (5mp) --- Bettor’s Delight-Mythical --- Thomas Pollack --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $65,000

Nat A Virgin (5mp) --- Always A Virgin-Nat-A-Tat-Tat --- Larry Stone --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $65,000

Major Athens (6ht) --- Andover Hall-Miss Athens --- Howard Taylor --- Northwood Bloodstock Agency --- $65,000

Some Kinda Beach (6hp) --- Somebeachsomewhere-Art’s Fantasy --- Harmon Racing Stable --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $65,000

Statesman N (9gp) --- Christian Cullen-Club Sport --- David Abbott/Abbott Stables --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $57,000

Bettor Memories (3gp) --- Bettor’s Delight-Allamerican Memoir --- Gus Dovi --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $55,000

Everything N More (3ft) --- Muscle Hill-Aiken For Clay --- Dewayne Minor --- Northwood Bloodstock Agency --- $55,000

Bettor Than You (6gp) --- Bettor’s Delight-Mambo Hall --- Lionel Watiker --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $55,000

Crazshana (4gt) --- Crazed-Keystone Shana --- Jeffrey Bamond/Bamond Racing --- Northwood Bloodstock Agency --- $52,000

American Ivy (3fp) --- American Ideal-Haunted --- Joseph Pennacchio --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $51,000

Doctor Terror (4mp) --- Western Terror-Doctor Seth --- Anthony Lake --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $50,000

Mystical Treasure (4mp) --- Real Desire-Sneakheravalentine --- Thomas Pollack --- Preferred Equine Inc., agent --- $50,000

For complete sales results, click here.

-Courtesy of Harness Racing Communications, a division of the U.S. Trotting Association. For more information, please visit www.ustrotting.com