Washington, PA — Fighting Evil launched a decisive move past the three-quarters and rolled home in a career-best 1:52.2 in Tuesday’s (Sept. 15) Keystone Classic at The Meadows. Darby Hanover took the other split in the $79,900 stakes for freshman pacing fillies.
Sniper Hanover opened up a sizeable lead after three-quarters but was no match for the rally of Fighting Evil, who overwhelmed her in the lane and held off Peep N Weep by a head for Mike Wilder. Ocean’s Apart completed the ticket.
“This filly just loves to chase,” said Dane Snyder, who trains the daughter of Sweet Lou and Evil Fight — a $12,000 yearling acquisition — for Danielle Snyder and Jason Ash. “She’s not very big herself, but she has a big heart. She has one more race this year — the Standardbred at Delaware. She’s little, and she needs some rest.”
Although Darby Hanover was forced to a :27.4 opening panel to reach the point, she had little trouble thereafter, cruising home for Andy Miller and trainer Julie Miller in 1:53.1. Natchez Belle was second, beaten 2-1/2 lengths, with Lady Newton third.
“When she came back to me at the half, she relaxed, so I felt all right from there on,” Andy Miller said. “She’s putting together a pretty nice year, and she has a few more races to go. She’ll probably go to the Liberty Bell next. We might try a big race later in the year.”
The daughter of Betting Line and Darena Hanover has finished in the money in all seven of her career starts for the Andy Miller Stable and Carroll Huffman.
$85,000 Keystone Classic — 2-Year-Old Filly Trot
This year’s Pennsylvania Stallion Series champion, Love Muffin, was out to extend her winning streak to three — and she did just that with a front-end victory in 1:56.2 for Jim Pantaleano, trainer David Wiest, and owners Edward Kimmel and Don Wiest. Long shot Cheesy Hanover was 2-3/4 lengths back in second with the first-over Frankly My Dear third.
Although the daughter of Andover Hall and Pine Yankee has been ahead at every call in her current streak, David Wiest indicated she actually prefers chasing.
“She’d do better off the pace, but she’s that quick off the gate,” he said. “She has two more races this year, both at (Harrah’s Philadelphia).”
In the other split, Julie and Andy Miller teamed up again to triumph with Pub Crawl who, on paper at least, appeared to lay over the field. The 1-5 favorite did nothing to dispel that notion, jogging in 1:56.1 and defeating Keystone Barracuda by four lengths. Myreanna earned show.
“She’s been racing some pretty good fillies, and she found a little better spot today,” Andy Miller said. “She still has quite a few races to go. We’ll probably go to the Liberty Bell next.”
The daughter of Bar Hopping and Myth now has banked $132,763 for the Andy Miller Stable, Louis Willinger, Kapildeo Singh and Phillip Helmuth.
Dave Palone collected three wins on the 13-race card, including a pair for trainer Marcus Marashian.
Live racing at The Meadows continues Wednesday (Sept. 16), when the 13-race program features a $22,835.77 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. On the racing front, the card offers a pair of Keystone Classics: a $63,550 stake for 3-year-old pacing fillies and a $67,500 event for 3-year-old trotting fillies. First post is 12:45 p.m.