Monte Miki just in time at Woodbine

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The finish line arrived just in time for Venerable. The two-year-old filly won her second Major Grand Circuit Prize of the Month at the Grand Circuit at Woodbine Mohawk Park, taking home the $ Mohawk Million on Saturday.

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Led by David Miller, Venerable found his way to the front halfway down the home stretch. She faced slight pressure on the turn, then a final steep climb from Duly Resolved. But Venerable dug to win by a 1:54 3/5 header as a 4-5 favorite.

“I can’t explain how well she plays, how tough she is,” Miller said. “Her heart and guts put her on edge.”

“My game plan was to go and put myself in the middle somewhere. But it didn’t work like that. It was a quick first quarter, but she got a smooth half. “

Trained by Nifty Norman, Venerable is now eight for eight this year, including a victory two weeks ago in the Peaceful Way. This was the second edition of the Mohawk Million, a unique race where nine starting places are sold for $ 100,000 each and last place goes to the winner of the William Welwood Memorial.

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Two more two-year-olds won big prize races at Mohawk on Saturday. Monte Miki charged near the back of a 12-horsepower field to win the $ 824,000 Metro Pace. Starting from behind the gate at station 11 meant pilot Scott Zeron needed a lot of patience in this one. Monte Miki was 11th at the start of the last corner. A few horses broke their stride but he was able to avoid any danger. Still ninth in the streak, he charged in for a break from Wearinmysixshooter, who had pulled away from the rest of the field, in a long streak to win in 1:52 2/5.

“I probably moved my horse three times before half-time because there was so much action going on,” Zeron said. “I thought I was going to be second because he answered well.”

“Probably in the last eighth of a mile, I thought I was going to catch up with him.”

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Trained by Mark Evers, Monte Miki is perfect in four starts, having raced his first three times in Ohio.

Niki Hill outlived Prohibition Legal in an undefeated filly battle by winning the $ 500,500 She’s a Great Lady. Coached by Dexter Dunn, Niki Hill took command in the backstretch and briefly lost the advantage over her rival before making her way to a win by a length of 1:50 2/5. It was the fifth win for the two-year-old filly owned by Hamilton’s Tom Hill.

In addition, four year old Lyons Sentinel won the $ 240,000 Milton Stakes with Tim Tetrick at the wheel in 1:49 2/5. She had won the Roses Are Red Stakes earlier this month. The $ 157,000 Simcoe Stakes for three-year-old trotters went to Inaminute Hanover 13-1 in long shot with Louis-Philippe Roy at the wheel in 1:52 4/5.

DOUBLE UP: Jockey Rafael Hernandez swept both stakes at Woodbine on Saturday, both leading. First off, Miss Speedy made it all the way to the $ 141,300 Duchess Stakes for trainer Mark Casse. Then Pink Lloyd won the $ 168,900 Bold Venture Stakes. It was the 27th career victory for nine-year-old intern Bob Tiller.

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