Elista Hanover charges home, wins Weiss final

Wilkes-Barre, PA — Third-over on the backstretch and still sixth at the stretch call, Elista Hanover found her best strides late to easily win the $50,000 Bobby Weiss Trotting Series final at Pocono Downs at Mohegan Pennsylvania on Tuesday afternoon (April 30), with her new mark of 1:53.1 also equaling the fastest trotting mile of the season at the mountain track.

Elista Hanover, starting from post four for driver David Miller, saw several of her rivals argue contentiously throughout fractions of :27.2, :56.1 and 1:24.2, then utilized a potent late kick to draw off to a three-length decision over Tove Palema, who caught much of the worst of the early battle. The 3-year-old International Moni filly won in the first two preliminary legs of the Weiss then took last week off, but she certainly showed her A-game Tuesday for trainer Annie Stoebe, who shares ownership with R. Lynn and Philomena Curry.

Elista Hanover passed a bevy of rivals late to win her $50,000 Bobby Weiss Series final at Pocono. Curtis Salonick photo.

The 1:53.1 local trotting standard for 2024 had first been posted by Fight Song on April 9, and then was equaled by the very same trotter in Tuesday’s second race. Anthony Napolitano bottomed out the field with the Kadabra gelding as he won his fourth race in his last five starts for trainer Deborah Daguet and owners Donald MacRae and Daguet Racing LLC.

The Walner filly Sister Diane won a $20,000 Weiss consolation, coming up the Pocono Pike to break her maiden with a 1:56.4 tally for trainer Åke Svanstedt and the ownership of Stable Why Not and Åke Svanstedt Inc. Sister Diane was driven by Andy Miller, top pilot on the day with three winners.

There will be no live racing at Pocono this Kentucky Derby Saturday (May 4), but the day following (May 5) features the return of Sunday racing to the Pocono program, with a first post of 6 p.m. This program will also mark the return of the stakes program for Pennsylvania-sired horses, as there will be three $30,000 divisions of a Pennsylvania All-Stars event for 3-year-old pacing fillies. Free Pocono programs are available at www.phha.org.

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