07/07/2013 12:47AM

Meadowlands: Warrawee Needy ties world record with 1:46 4/5 effort in Haughton elimination

Lisa Photo
Jody Jamieson piloted Warrawee Needy to a world-record tying 1:46 4/5 clocking.

Going into 2013 the aged pacing ranks appeared to be loaded. On Saturday night, harness fans found out just how talented this group of pacers really is. It came quick like a bolt of lightning on a warm summer evening as Warrawee Needy became the fastest four-year-old pacer of all time while equaling the Meadowlands track record of 1:46 4/5 in the first of two $50,000 eliminations for the William Haughton Memorial at the Meadowlands.

It was a rare time when a great race on paper actually played out that way on the track with the action fast and furious from the outset. Entrymates Hugadragon and Foiled Again were the quickest at the start with the former grabbing the top quickly and parking the latter through a :26 opening quarter. With Foiled Again on the lead Meadowlands master Golden Receiver stepped on the accelerator and blasted to the front hitting the half in a dazzling :52 3/5 seconds.

Once in front driver Corey Callahan allowed Golden Receiver a little breather that gave A Rocknroll Dance and 7-5 favorite Warrawee Needy the opportunity to enter the picture on the outside first and second over respectively.

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In his past two starts over five-eighths mile tracks Golden Receiver threw in the towel early, but renewed and refreshed on the big track the eight-year-old kicked into high gear losing pocket-sitting Foiled Again and looking poised to spring a 16-1 surprise. But Jody Jamieson, behind the sharp closing Warrawee Needy, refused to concede and kept driving his horse. The son of E Dees Cam was able to edge past the pacesetter late and stop the teletimer equaling Holborn Hanover’s all-age track mark.

“I saw the half flash up and I thought we would have to go a big trip to win,” said Jamieson following the race. “But I wasn’t thinking (1):46 and a piece. That’s amazing.”

The victory was in some ways vindication for Jamieson. “I’m just really happy to be part of the horse and happy that the horse is still around after some tough trips I gave him last year,” Jamieson said.

Razzle Dazzle found room between horses to finish fourth with Hugadragon also advancing to the final.

Sweet Lou’s bad luck streak ended on Saturday with the four-year-old overcoming post nine to capture the second $50,000 Haughton elimination in 1:48 4/5. Driver Yannick Gingras was able to get around horses early and then had to go uncovered the final half eventually wearing down pacesetting favorite Pet Rock in the final strides. Unlike the first elimination the half was only :55 in this division as Pet Rock was able to displace Bolt The Duer on the front after the quarter and relax the pace.

It set up a stretch-long sprint with the once again unlucky Bolt The Duer caught in traffic during the :25 3/5 final quarter having to settle for third. Up The Credit and Aracache Hanover were close-up throughout and rounded out the qualifiers.

Winning driver Gingras explained Sweet Lou’s lackluster performance over the past two weeks at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs following the score. “Ninety-nine percent of the horses love the Pocono surface,” said Gingras, “but he really didn’t take to it. He was hitting his knees and that’s why he ran.”

Gingras summed up his winning drive “He (Sweet Lou) was waiting for me to call on him all the way around the last turn. At the top of the stretch I called on him and he responded.”

George Brennan made a rare appearance at the Meadowlands on Saturday and drove 3-5 favorite Sunshine Beach perfectly to a 1:48 victory in the lone $50,000 Meadowlands Pace elimination. The Ontario-based invader had been a total closer racing North of the border but that didn’t change Brennan’s style as he jetted the Somebeachsomewhere-sired colt through a blistering :26 1/5 second quarter to reach the lead. Sunshine Beach drew off from most of the competition while coasting to the three quarters in 1:21 and then had enough left in reserve to sprint home in :27 flat for a measured score.

Odds On Equuleus, idle for three weeks since some disappointing efforts in Canada, rallied brilliantly after a parked without cover expedition for driver John Campbell. The Hall of Fame reinsman kept the colt going and eventually found himself in the pocket behind the winner in midstretch. Odds On Equuleus made a race of it to the wire looking very much like the top horse he was at two.

Resistance Futile rallied from well off the pace for the show spot.

“He came from the back up at Mohawk, “said Brennan following the race, “but that just doesn’t work here. I knew I had to be up close. I didn’t necessarily need to be on the lead but I wound up there.”

Winning trainer Mark Steacy offered his view of what the coming week looks like for his colt. “We’ll give him an easy week and hopefully he’ll be stronger and better next time.”

The draws for next Saturday’s finals were held following the prelims. The William Haughton final (with post positions): (1) Hugadragon;  (2) Warrawee Needy; (3) Sweet Lou; (4) Razzle Dazzle; (5) Golden Receiver; (6) Foiled Again; (7) Bolt The Duer; (8) Aracache Hanover; (9) Pet Rock; (10) Up The Credit.

The Meadowlands Pace: (1) Odds On Equuleus; (2) Sunshine Beach; (3) Resistance Futile; (4) Twilight Bonfire; (5) Captaintreacherous; (6) Sir Cary’s Z Tam; (7) Johny Rock; (8) Beach Memories; (9) Wake Up Peter; (10) Rockin Amadeus.

The Mistletoe Shalee (no eliminations necessary): (1) Novascotia Hanover; (2) I Luv The Nitelife; (3) Shebestingin; (4) Jerseylicious; (5) Acquavella; (6) Nikki Beach; (7) Charisma Hanover

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