“Marvelous Marvin” Raber wins Billings Midwest final with Mikey Hanover

Dayton, OH — Although the seven-month CKG Billings Harness Driving Series is winding down this season, the finals in both the Midwest and Eastern Regions, as well as the Gold and Silver Cup Finals, will be forthcoming.

Tonight at Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway in Ohio the top point earners in the Midwest Region battled for a $10,000 purse but it was “Marvelous Marvin” Raber and Mikey Hanover who made a laugher out of the contest when they sailed to the lead and played catch me if you can, and nobody could as they trotted off to a four-length triumph in a 1:56.2 clocking. At the top of the stretch, Mikey Hanover had eight open lengths on his competition and just coasted home an easy winner for “Marvelous Marv.”

With the starting gate in high gear, the field of trotters was turned loose and Gregg “Fast Greggy” Kiedel sent the eight-horse, Nashville Holiday, to the front and they had command in a :27.2 first quarter with Mikey Hanover comfortable in the two-hole.

Not content to follow, Raber moved Mikey Hanover to the lead before the halfway point and Mikey was full of trot and stepped a :28.4 third split to open a three-length lead over Kiedel’s charge as he whizzed by the three quarters in 1:25.2. From there the only thing that was in doubt was how many lengths would Raber’s trotter win by.

When he headed down the lengthy home stretch Mikey Hanover had upped his lead to eight lengths and Raber sat cool looking around for challengers who never came as they crossed the wire an easy four-length winner. Fairground Drama and Richard “the Wolverine” Roach, who was traveling in the fourth position, rallied and finished second. Nashville Holiday, had broken equipment and faded to third.

The winner, a 9-year-old altered son of Majestic Son, is owned by Leroy Keim and trained by Robert Coblentz. He returned a $14.00 win mutuel.

The Billings, known as the granddaddy of all amateur organizations, will present the East Region Final at Pocono Downs next Saturday with the series Gold & Silver Cup Finals set for November 25 at Yonkers Raceway.

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