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2017 RACE DATES

MEADOWLANDS - Post Time 7:15pm
January 26 - March 11, 2017
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January 5 - March 25, 2017
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March 31 - May 6, 2017
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Special Race Day Monday September 4, 2017

December 28 - December 30, 2017
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TAKTER TROTTERS TUNE UP IN DANCER MEMORIAL

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – July 9, 2014 -- The anticipated matchup between Father Patrick and Trixton will take place this Saturday night, July 12, 2014, at the Meadowlands in the $317,000 Stanley Dancer Memorial.

The Grand Circuit stakes for sophomore trotting colts is a highlight of the Meadowlands Pace under card.

A field of 12 was named to the race, including this marquee match-up of Jimmy Takter trainees who will meet competitively for the first time.


Jimmy Takter


Hall of Fame horseman Takter has trained many champions and won the Hambletonian twice but never has he possessed an embarrassment of riches such as this. When you include the accomplished Nuncio, who was moved to the stable after this two-year-old season and leaves from post seven in the Dancer, Takter comes into the “Hambletonian Homestretch” with a true triple threat.

Bought from the Hunterton Farms consignment by the partnership of Brixton Medical AB and Christina Takter for $360,000, Trixton was highest priced yearling colt sold in 2012. Big, dark and bred to trot, the colt is truly a striking individual. His pedigree reeks of Hambletonian success: He is from the first crop of 2009 Hambletonian winner Muscle Hill out of Emilie Cas El, she a daughter of Hall of Fame matron Amour Angus, one of trotting's great lines.

While he customarily employs the top catch drivers, Takter has been the primary driver for Trixton throughout his career, citing the need for stability in the sulky. The colt was raced carefully last season, winning half of his eight starts and flashing brilliance while exhibiting immaturity at times. An injury coming out of the Kindergarten Final last fall ended his season and the time away from the track allowed Trixton to grow into the horse Takter though he could be.

He got a pair of showy qualifiers and a useful overnight under his belt to begin the 2014 season then drew immediate notice, dominating the Simpson Memorial field in 1:51.2 with ease. He then seared through the New Jersey Sires Stakes in record time before lowering the Canadian record to 1:51.3 in the Goodtimes.

The assignment this week, however, has been complicated by drawing post position 12, in the second tier.

Never one to shy away from praising the good ones, Takter has been fairly reserved when discussing Trixton, although after his Goodtimes romp he observed that “…great horses overcome anything.”

While Trixton took some time to find his game, Father Patrick has been virtually flawless from the start.

He is a product of classic Brittany Farms breeding, a mating of Cantab Hall and Gala Dream. He is the second millionaire from his dam, being a full brother to Pastor Stephen. The maternal family boasts champions like Sugar Trader and Chocolatier.

Father Patrick is a different type of trotter, propelled by an efficient gait with no wasted motion in his strides. His tractability is one of his great advantages, negotiating through the course at high speed.

After annexing every major stakes and the Dan Patch divisional award in 2013, Father Patrick has returned at age three to win each of his five starts this year with minimal effort.

His most recent conquest was the Earl Beal Memorial at Pocono in world record time of 1:50.2 under his own power, the pull-out earplugs never drawn.

Career-wise Father Patrick has now won 15 of 16 starts and in excess of $1million for ownership group the Father Patrick Stable who paid $105,000 for him as a yearling. Diamond Creek Farm joined the partnership last fall with the intention of standing him at the conclusion of his racing career.

His driver throughout has been Yannick Gingras who was nothing short of ebullient in his praise of the colt when interviewed after the Beal.

"He's a dream come true," said Gingras. "When I came to race in the United States, that's what I wanted. When I made the move to the Meadowlands, I made it to drive great horses, and he's definitely the most talented horse I've driven."

Takter has been consistent in his praise for Father Patrick, declaring him the “Best horse I have trained” on a few occasions and then expounding in his own post Beal declaration.

"This horse, he trotted here a [1]:50.2 world record,” Takter said. “I know this track is fantastic, but Yannick never even asked him -- he had the [ear] plugs left in him. He was sitting on a good second anyways. He is just a three-year-old. We saw the fastest trotter today in [1]:49 here [in Sebastian K] and this is just a three-year-old. This is a heck of a performance."

Saturday’s race may shed considerable light on just who will be the favorite for the August 2 Hambletonian.

The Saturday night card at the Meadowlands has an early post time of 6:30 p.m. It features seven Grand Circuit stakes and four New Jersey Sires Stakes Finals among the 13 races, with total purses in excess of $2.5 million.

The $776,000 Meadowlands Pace will be broadcast live on the CBS Sports Network from 9-10 p.m, and the whole card will be featured on the TVG Network.

Visit www.playmeadowlands.com for further information.

--Release and photo courtesy of the Meadowlands

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