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Series Opener Lures Filly Rivals

Sportsfancy and Faith Leigh, currently the one-two leaders in the ICF second season filly division, Friday night begin the road to Hawthorne’s $50,000 Determination Plus Series Championship, one of eight state-bred showdowns to be raced on closing night, Saturday August 4.

  Sportsfancy will carry the early 2-1 favoritism in the Friday’s first division opening leg of the Determination Plus when she leaves from post six in race four, while Faith Leigh (9-5) has to buck the eight-hole in the sixth race second split.

 After rattling off six consecutive season victories, including the $48,000 Violet Final and her $29,800 division of a Hanover stake at Balmoral, and the $100,000 Maywood Filly Pace Championship, Sports Fancy ended up the bridesmaid to Cabana Fever in the Lady Chicago and in an July 3 prep for this series behind Faith Leigh here at Hawthorne.

 

 “You can pretty much drive Sportsfancy anyway you want,” says her driver Ryan Anderson. The filly has pulled down $125,263 this year and $249,728 in 25 lifetime starts for BHD Standardbreds of Warrenville, IL.

  

  “Sports Fancy is a big strong filly who didn’t really come around until late last year after Super Night. Before that it seemed she didn’t really want to race but then she finished her first season really well, “said her trainer Homer Hochstetler.

  “In between Sportsfancy’s two-year-old and three-year-old seasons everything a trainer could hope for came about for the filly. She filled out nicely, getting bigger and stronger. And when I started training her back you could see she wanted to be a racehorse,” added the 54-year-old conditioner with over 1,200 winners and horses with $13 million in purse money.

  Taking on Sportsfancy in race four are Odds On Ariel (8-1), Laura Go Lightly (10-1), Past The Evidence (5-1), Chevie Chic (10-1), Perdido (3-1), Fox Valley Nanners (9-2) and Miller Creek Heart (20-1).

  Faith Leigh (Brent Holland) is a sharp filly going into the Determination Plus series. She whipped the heavy-favored Cabana Fever in her $29,800 Hanover stake division at Balmoral with a 1:51.1 lifetime best clocking and the Erv Miller trainee not only beat Sportsfancy when they tangled here on July 7, but she did it racing first over against her rival with a quick 1:51.3 mile.

  Earlier in the season the Incredible Finale offspring won the $67,000 Jersey Girls Final at The Meadowlands against some very good open company fillies for Illinois owners Ron Phillips and John Carver.

 Faith Leigh’s main challenge Friday night could come from her stable mate Audacity (3-1), who is back in town after taking on some tough foes in Canada the last two months. This Erv Miller trainee left the local scene with three consecutive wins and five out of her last six when Mike Oosting took over her lines. Unraced at two, Audacity (p.p. 7) was a $16,000 purchase by Miller for owner Lloyd Arnold at the 2005 Cottonwood Farm Sale.

 Among Audacity’s siblings is Coleheartedrevenge, a 1:49.2 pacer with $559,880 in career earnings.

  Starting inside of the two Erv Miller trainees are Miranda’s Future (10-1), There For Me (9-2), Orgami Rose (8-1), Looking At You (20-1) and Lil Fast Corvette (15-1).

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