Despite the fact that the last four weekly winners of the Open Trot at Miami Valley were in the field, a new winner emerged on Wednesday (March 15) in the $30,000 feature race.
The Mighty Hill improved on his runner-up finish a week ago and swept to his fourth seasonal victory, his second in three tries since joining the Jeff Smith Stable. Son Trevor Smith was in the sulky for the 1:54 score over Combs Hanover and Triathlon AS.
Smith hustled The Mighty Hill into the two-hole behind Rose Run Valor during the :28 first quarter, then was content to accept a pocket ride as Combs Hanover ranged up to challenge Rose Run Valor through middle fractions of :57.3 and 1:25.3. Tipping out behind Combs Hanover and then fanning three-wide down the home stretch secured the win for the Ohio-sired son of What The Hill.
Bet The House LLC owns The Mighty Hill, who had been racing his way through the conditions ladder at The Meadows near Pittsburgh prior to joining the Smith barn in Washington Court House, Ohio. The four-year-old now sports 10 victories in his first 30 lifetime starts, good for $373,125 in earnings. He was the winner of the $300,000 Ohio Sires Stakes final as a two-year-old.
The second leg of the Ray Paver Sr. Memorial was contested on Wednesday as well. Hill Of A Diamond and trainer/driver Pat Melloy Jr. topped Whats Up Cupcake and Echos GQ in the first $17,500 split, timed in 1:54.4. Three races later, after the sun set and temperatures started dropping, the second division went to the Ryan Miller-trained Shamrock and driver Jordan Ross over Mollys Star and Vel Jail Bondsman in 1:58.1.
The top three finishers from each Paver division will join Ferretti, Fencer and Cleopatra AS in the $25,000 championship final of the series on March 22.
(With files from Miami Valley Raceway)