East Rutherford, NJ — Zenith Stride stayed on gait as two favorites broke stride, allowing driver Brian Sears to steer the Muscle Hill-Open Access offspring easily down the middle of the track for an 87-1 upset in the $319,000 Peter Haughton Memorial for 2-year-old trotting colts and geldings Saturday afternoon (Aug. 8) at The Meadowlands.
Favorite Plumville Prince never got started, breaking as the gate swung open and allowing Moonstone S to leave for the early lead over Venerate. As the first quarter ticked in :28, Type A took over the lead from Moonstone S, while Venerate followed the pair to the half in :57.
Moonstone S came out of the pocket and reclaimed the lead as Type A broke stride, allowing Venerate to inherit the catbird seat. Moonstone cut three-quarters in 1:25.3 as Venerate began the hard chase. Sitting with cover all the way and with plenty of trot left, Zenith Stride circled the front pair and flew past the top two with no urging to cross the finish line in 1:55.1. Moonstone S was second.
“I liked this colt the first time I sat behind him,” said Sears. “He had a few issues; made a few breaks, but I never lost confidence in him. I knew one he matured a bit, he’d come around and be the horse we thought he was.”
Mark Harder trains Zenith Stride, who won his first race in four starts for owners Emilio and Maria Rosati. Sears recorded his fourth Peter Haughton Memorial victory.
Zenith Stride paid $177.00 to win.