Octogenarian Nadeau takes Maine Amateur at Cumberland

Cumberland, ME — The 86-year-old owner-trainer-driver Bob Nadeau had been winless in seven starts this season. That all changed on Saturday (June 15) at Cumberland, when the youthful octogenarian steered his own N Expense to victory in a $5,000 division of the Maine Amateur Driving Club.

A concrete salesman by trade, the affable and hard-working part-time horseman has never let age get in the way of his passion for racing.

“I have been doing 40 chin ups every day, ever since I was on the football team in high school,” noted Nadeau. “Not only has this helped keep me fit, but has also been useful in the bike when these horses start to get a little grabby.”

Bob Nadeau scored with his own N Expense. Joe Shaw photo.

In Saturday’s victory, Nadeau found himself splitting horses with his two-hole position and left alertly along with the pylon-protecting I’ll Call U Later (Derek Howes) and Goin Manstyle (Hunter Lofthus) who was forcing the quick opening pace on the outside.

However, once around the turn the pacesetting I’ll Call U Later dramatically downgraded the tempo, resulting in a pedestrian :29 opening panel. With the field stacked up tightly around the far turn, Nadeau popped the pocket going into a 1:01 half.

With the upbeat rhythm heading into the backstretch for the final time, N Expense looked I’ll Call U Later right in the eye, and then went right on by. After a 1:29.4 third section, Nadeau kept right on rolling down to the wire by an open five lengths, scoring in 2:01.1.

It was the second seasonal victory for the 13-year-old son of N Xample, who paid $10.60 for the triumph. Owned, trained and driven to victory by Nadeau, it was the reinsman’s first visit to the winner’s circle since December of last year when his gray stable star Putnams Storm won the $7,000 Frosty final. Nadeau has been driving horses since 1977 and has quietly amassed 165 victories and earned $261,508.

Always modest, Nadeau stated, “I never made a lot of money driving horses, but I have always had a lot of fun. And you can’t put a price on that!”

In other news, former track record holder Rocksapatriot, driven by Dave Ingraham, sat a perfect two-hole trip to upset pacesetting favorite Instant Replay (Walter Case Jr.) to win the $6,000 feature in 1:57.2. They paid $12.80 to win for owner Stephen Farrell and trainer Kelly Case.

Former Maine Sire Stakes champion Call Me Maverick returned to his home track to take a $5,500 conditioned pace in a swift 1:55.4. Paying $2.40 to win, Mike Stevenson drove for trainer Alison Hynes. The summa cum laude graduate of the Gordon Corey Institute of Equine Erudition remains the homebred property of Upland Farm.

Stephen LaCasse took the other $5,000 Maine Amateur Driving Club event, picking up his first win of the year with Nets Of Passion in 1:58.4. They paid $3.80 and were the favorites from the pylon position.

The MADC is sponsored by the Blue Seal Feed Stores of North Yarmouth and Windham, Maine.

The Maine Sire Stakes opened the card with two $16,196 divisions of 3-year-old filly pacers. A complete recap is available here.

Racing resumes Friday (June 21) which includes several divisions of the Maine Sire Stakes for 3-year-old trotters.

The First Tracks Cumberland meet continues with racing on Friday and Saturday each weekend during the extended pari-mutuel meeting, which runs through Aug. 3. Post time is always 3:15 p.m.

For additional information, visit our website at firsttrackscumberland.com.

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