03/05/2017 12:20AM

Miami Valley: New all-age track record set by Franzo

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Franzo was claimed for $20,000 just five weeks ago.

Franzo not only won his second straight $22,000 Open I Pace at Miami Valley Raceway on Saturday night (March 4), but established an all-time, all-age track record of 1:49 1/5 in the process.  The 5-year-old Rockin Image gelding was claimed for $20,000 five weeks ago by trainer Adam Short, who raced him in $30,000 claimers for three weeks--finishing third, first and second--before moving up to the Open ranks for his latest two successes.

After last week's 1:51 4/5 'neck' victory from a second tier start, driver Dan Noble must have sensed that Franzo was in fine form.  With a start position in the middle of the gate this week, Noble and Franzo set sail from the onset and refused to let anyone go, including Southwind Amazon, who has won four opens at Northfield already in 2017. 

The speed duel between the two stalwarts resulted in fractions of 26, 54 4/5, and 1:22 3/5 before the new track record holder drew off with a final quarter in 26 3/5.  Franzo's seasonal earnings now stand at $50,535 with five wins in nine starts.  Career-wise, Franzo has 14 wins and $145,507 in earnings.

Two divisions of first leg action in the George Williams Memorial late-closer also took place for male non-winners of four races or $35,000 lifetime.  Dan Noble also steered the winners of both heats, scoring an upset with California Sun, who returned a $25.00 win mutuel, and winning as expected with heavy favorite Control Tower ($2.40).  Both victories were clocked in 1:53 4/5.

California Sun beat Snowball's Romeo (Ken Holliday) and My Three Sons (Trace Tetrick).  The 4-year-old son of Bettor's Delight is owned by James Miller of Dayton and trained by Bill Miller II.

Noble also trains Control Tower, a 5-year-old by Panspacificflight, who is owned by Stephen Sexton of nearby Xenia.

--edited release (Miami Valley)