Takter lands with Tactical Landing in Bluegrass trot

by Ray Cotolo, for Red Mile

Lexington, KY — Trainer Jimmy Takter swept the top three spots when he piloted Tactical Landing to a 1:51.1 lifetime best ahead of stablemates Zephyr Kronos and Wolfgang in the second of two divisions of the $242,000 Explosive Matter Bluegrass 3-year-old colt and gelding trot, sponsored by the Explosive Matter Syndicate and Hanover Shoe Farms, at Red Mile on Sunday (Sept. 30).

Nigel Soult photo

Tactical Landing lived up to his billing as the favorite with a win in his Bluegrass division.

Zephyr Kronos swept to the front ahead of Wolfgang, another stablemate, in the pocket. Takter placed Tactical Landing wide in fourth through the first quarter in :28.4 before gradually advancing towards the lead. Following a :56.2 half, Tactical Landing gained separation.

Tactical Landing held a 2-1/2 length lead while Muscle M Up attempted to gain position first-over. By three-quarters in 1:24.2, Tactical Landing spun into the stretch while Zephyr Kronos cut his deficit from second well ahead of Wolfgang battling for third. Patent Leather, from last, rallied through the center of the track to take fourth.

An $800,000 yearling purchase at the 2016 Lexington Select Sale, Tactical Landing, a colt by Muscle Hill out of the Varenne mare Southwind Serena, won his fifth race from nine starts this season and of 11 overall, earning $313,600 for The Tactical Landing Stable. He paid $3.60 to win.

Sent off the 1-2 favorite, Met’s Hall delivered a wire-to-wire 1:51.2 performance in the first division of the Bluegrass colt trot.

Andy Miller put the Julie Miller-trained Cantab Hall colt on the point as Evaluate secured the pocket from post one. Met’s Hall trotted to the quarter in :28.2 and faced no pressure to the half, timed in :56.1.

Maxus, positioned fourth, moved first-over heading into the final turn tracked by Shoshie Deo second-over. Met’s Hall maintained a length lead past three-quarters in 1:25.1 and initiated a sprint into the stretch. Maxus lost stride, leaving Evaluate to chase from the pocket two lengths away at the wire along with Fashionwoodchopper in third. Shoshie Deo took fourth.

Earning $964,754, Met’s Hall won his fourth race from nine starts this season and his ninth from 20 overall. The $3 winner races for Stroy Inc. and the Andy Miller Stable Inc.

Grand Circuit action continues at Red Mile on Thursday (Oct. 4) with divisions of the $350,000 est. International Stallion Stakes for 2-year-old colt and gelding trotters. First race post Thursday will be at 1 p.m..

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