Washington, PA – Prior to Saturday’s (June 12) $99,370 Currier & Ives at The Meadows, trainer Chris Beaver predicted that his horse Perron would win some big races this year by roughing it on the outside. It was a bold forecast since Perron, the reigning Ohio champion, was winless in five starts this year.
But Beaver’s crystal ball was in focus, as Perron moved first over to wear down Whiskey Blu and capture the prestigious test for 3-year-old trotters. Panzano, also trained by Beaver, finished third.
When Whiskey Blu quarter-poled to the top, he was able to discourage any challenges until the three-quarters where Perron took up the chase. Winning driver Ronnie Wrenn, Jr. indicated that was about the best scenario he could draw up for the My MVP-Long Island Tea gelding.
“The four hole is a good leaving spot here, and that’s about as good as he can leave,” Wrenn said. “I knew I would have to grind it first over, but he can go all day long. He’s just not super-handy. He’ll eye a horse down, and he just doesn’t quit.”
Perron and Whiskey Blu dueled through the stretch until Perron inched away to down his rival by 1/2 length in a career best 1:54.
Beaver said Perron has about a five-week gap in his schedule before his next engagement, an Ohio Sires Stake leg, and that he might look for a race for Perron or give him time off and qualify him for his return.
Perron lifted his career bankroll to $272,389 and helped Beaver extend his distinguished record in the Currier & Ives, which has been contested since 1975. Beaver won the 2017 edition with Fraser Ridge, took a 2009 heat with Triumphant Caviar and captured a 2014 division with Il Sogno Dream, who scored in a stake-record 1:53.2.
Dave Palone was aboard a third Beaver-trained Currier & Ives contestant, Kildare King, who broke stride early and often. Palone managed to enjoy a pretty good day anyway, winning six of the 13 races on the card.
Live racing at The Meadows resumes Wednesday (June 16) when the program features a $12,467.41 carryover in the final-race Super Hi-5. First post is 12:45 p.m.