Takter extends Breeders Crown trainers' win record at Meadowlands
Hall-of-Fame trainer Jimmy Takter extended his own Breeders Crown record with a 20th victory Saturday as favorite Pinkman matched a stakes record time in the $500,000 2-year-old Colt & Gelding Trot at the Meadowlands.
Pinkman, driven by Yannick Gingras on the final night of the 30th annual Breeders Crown, covered the mile oval in 1:53 2/5, holding on at the wire to beat a charging John Campbell-driven Muscle Diamond by a half-length. Pinkman went off at even money and paid $4.00.
Gingras said he could have driven Muscle Diamond, but decided on Pinkman because "Pinkman came into the race super sharp." It was Pinkman's fourth consecutive win.
Takter, who had five horses in the race, picked up his first Crown winner this weekend in Friday's 3-Year-Old Filly Trot. Gingras won two races Friday.
Saturday's card included the final eight stakes races of the two-night, 12-race event worth a total purse of $5,556,250. The late-season harness event is the sport's equivalent of thoroughbred racing's Breeders Cup, and its champions can take a major step toward winning Horse of the Year honors.
JK She'salady, trained by Takter's daughter Nancy Johansson and driven by Tim Tetrick, kept her undefeated year intact in the $500,000 2-Year-Old Filly Pace by beating Sassa Hanover in a stakes and track record 1:50 2/5. JK She'salady paid $2.20, as she ran her perfect record to 12 for 12.
The win was Johansson's first, and she took the opportunity to throw a playful dig at her father.
"I asked him if he had any good 2-year-old pacing fillies," Johansson said. "And then I told him he could leave them home because I had the best one. I knew she'd be good, but I didn't know she'd be that good."
Hall-of-Fame Driver John Campbell won his record 46th Crown race, his first since 2011, in the $400,000 Open Pace as he rushed Thinking Out Loud up from fifth in the stretch to nip Sweet Lou at the wire in 1:43 3/5. The winner paid $10.40.