EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Captain Corey took the lead early, held off one problem after which drew off within the stretch to provide trainer-driver Ake Svanstedt his second win within the $1 million Hambletonian on Saturday on the Meadowlands.
Svanstedt did not want any assist from the judges this time. He was awarded trotting’s most prestigious race in 2017 when What The Hill, who was first throughout the end line, was disqualified for interfering with one other 3-year-old. That promoted Svanstedt’s Excellent Spirit from second to first.
“He is a very good horse who will battle however he was a robust horse right this moment,” Svanstedt mentioned.
Captain Corey received for the third time in 5 begins this yr, and the eighth time in 12 profession outings.
Svanstedt, who drove Captain Corey to a win in his elimination division final weekend, fired away from the No. 4 submit and had his colt on the lead on the primary flip with Cuatro De Julio urgent laborious from submit No. 10. Delayed Hanover, one other Svanstedt coach, was third.
Cuatro De Julio challenged close to the top of the backstretch however Svanstedt by no means misplaced his inside place. As the sector got here into the stretch, Captain Corey opened daylight and Svanstedt regarded again 4 instances as they approached the end in search of a challenger.
“I used to be frightened they had been going to come back from behind,” mentioned the 62-year-old Svanstedt, who got here to america from Sweden in 2014.
There weren’t any challengers. Captain Corey crossed the road 1 1/2 lengths forward of longshot Spy Sales space in 1:51.1. Ambassador Hanover, one in all three colts within the race educated by Svanstedt, completed third.
Captain Corey paid $4.60, $3.20 and $2.80 and earned $500,000 for his homeowners. Spy Sales space, who has by no means received a race, returned $28.40 and $14.60. Ambassador Hanover returned $13.60.
Delayed Hanover, who received the opposite elimination final weekend, completed 4 within the discipline of 10. Take All Comers completed fifth and was adopted by Sonofamistery, Cuatro De Julio, Venerate, final yr’s Dan Patch Award winner, Actually Quick and Locatelli, who went on a break close to the highest of the stretch.
One race earlier, Bella Bellini took the lead within the stretch and captured $500,000 Hambletonian Oaks for 3-year-old fillies. Pushed by Dexter Dunn and educated by Nifty Norman, Bella Bellini ($3) lined the mile in 1:52.1 in profitable by 2 1/2 lengths over longshot Iteration.
The 16-race card additionally noticed Rockyroad Hanover ($8.80) rally late to win the $276,150 Cane Tempo, the second leg of the pacing Triple Crown. American Braveness, the winner of the Messenger, the opening leg at Yonkers, completed final within the discipline of seven 3-year-old colts.