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Pocono: Foiled Again continues to set records at age 9
Yannick Gingras would be surprised by Foiled Again’s continued excellence at age 9 except at this point he finds it impossible to be surprised by anything Foiled Again accomplishes.
The richest pacer in harness racing history added to his laurels last weekend when he won his elimination for Saturday’s $500,000 Ben Franklin Pace by a neck over Modern Legend in a career-best 1:48 at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. The time equaled the fastest mile ever by an older pacer on a five-eighths-mile track and set the record for the fastest mile by a gelding of any age on a five-eighths oval.
“Am I surprised that he’s doing that, yeah; but on the other hand nothing really surprises me that he does,” said Gingras, who has driven Foiled Again in 110 of his 134 starts since joining the stable of trainers Mickey and Ron Burke in July 2008. “You just shake your head sometimes; he’s a great horse.”
Foiled Again has won $4.92 million in his career, making him the richest pacer in the world. He could become the first to top $5 million with either a first- or second-place finish in the Franklin. Only three trotters in history earned more money: Varenne ($5.63 million), Moni Maker ($5.58 million) and Jag de Bellouet ($4.97 million). All three are retired.
Last season, Foiled Again earned $1.20 million, becoming at the age of 8 the oldest pacer to have a million-dollar year. He also was named the sport’s best older male pacer for the second consecutive year by the U.S. Harness Writers Association.
In 2011, at the age of 7, Foiled Again was voted Pacer of the Year. He was the first pacer older than age 4 to ever receive the honor.
For his career, Foiled Again has won 69 of 180 races and finished among the top three a total of 137 times. This season, the gelding has won four of 11 starts with nine finishes in the money.
His victory in his Ben Franklin Pace elimination was his first trip to the winner’s circle in two months, but Foiled Again finished second in the $450,000 Levy Memorial final and $184,000 Roll With Joe during that span.
“Everybody writes him off and he comes back and shows what kind of horse he is,” the 33-year-old Gingras said. “I know I’m young, but I don’t think many people have seen a horse like him; the way he’s done it for so many years in a row. I don’t think he gets the credit he deserves.
“You’ve got to give the Burkes a lot of credit. They do a great job at keeping him happy. He’s an unbelievable horse. He’s got $4.9 million and it’s not because he’s the fastest horse, it’s because he’s the toughest horse. It’s his heart.”
Foiled Again, who is owned by the Burke Racing Stable, Mark Weaver and Mike Bruscemi, and JJK Stables, drew post No. 4 for the Franklin final and is the 5-2 morning line favorite.
The other elim winners, Razzle Dazzle and Dynamic Youth, drew posts one and nine respectively. Betterthancheddar, who won last year’s Franklin in 1:48, got post eight after finishing third in his elimination (won by Dynamic Youth). He is the 3-1 second choice, with Razzle Dazzle at 4-1.
“One thing I know is there’s going to be a lot of action,” Gingras said. “There are a lot of great horses in there and a lot of speed. I think they’re going to put up some huge numbers. I don’t think we necessarily have to be on the front this week because I think they’re going to go really, really fast.
“It will be an exciting race to be in and for the fans to watch too.”
-Courtesy of Harness Racing Communications, a division of the U.S. Trotting Association. For more information, please visit www.ustrotting.com
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