by John Manzi, for the C.K.G. Billings Series
Milton, ON — Over the last two days, it didn’t matter whether “Dynamite Dave” Drew was driving on a seven-eighths or half-mile track, or whether he was handling a pacer or a trotter. The owner of a consulting company and sparkling amateur driver won Billings races on both size racetracks and scored a victory with both a pacer and a trotter.
On Sunday (Sept. 30), he won a Billings Pace at Flamboro Downs, and on Monday (Oct. 1), he copped a Billings Trot at Woodbine Mohawk Park with the veteran Deweycheatumnhowe gelding A Rod Hall in a time of 1:58.3 over a muddy race course.
“He figured to be a factor in the race as long as he stayed trotting,” Drew said about A Rod Hall. “He has the speed; I just had to keep him trotting.” And that’s precisely what Drew did.
“We had the pole (position) and I steadied him when we left the gate. And once he was settled down, the old guy knew just what to do,” Drew explained.
They were two lengths to the good as they passed by the quarter pole in :28.2, and at the half in :58.1 they were comfortable. When the field headed for the third stanza, A Rod Hall opened the lead to four lengths as the timer flashed 1:28.3. From there, only the margin of victory was in doubt. At the wire they had five lengths on runner-up Cloud Nine Hanover, who was driven by “Mighty Matt” Zuccarello. Third place went to Lets Leavem in rein to Steve “You’re Never Too” Oldford.
Sent off as the favorite in the race, A Rod Hall paid $4.70 to win. He is owned by Ken Fitzgerald, William Lattimer, Jeff McFadden and Jeff Roberts, and is trained by Richard Moreau.