Bolt The Duer and driver Sam Widger used a valiant stretch drive to overtake a field of ten in the 20th installment of the $200,000 Dan Patch Invitational on Saturday, May 25 at Hoosier Park Racing and Casino. With a final time of 1:49.3, Bolt The Duer was able to take advantage of a pocket trip to notch his first win of the season for trainer, Peter Foley.
Leaving from post seven, Bolt The Duer was quick off the gate but was forced to settle for the pocket as Trace Tetrick had Up The Credit out and firing from post nine. Up The Credit had to work for position but reached the front through an opening panel in :26 seconds as the field sorted itself out through the first turn. Carrying the publics’ money, Hurrikane Kingcole and driver Brett Miller opted for a trip off the pace and settled along the rail in fourth with Aracache Hanover and Doug McNair following intently in fifth. Up The Credit continued to call the shots down the backside as the tightly knit field of ten reached the half in :53.4. Fred and Ginger was the first to commit to the outer flow as Ricky Macomber Jr. had him out and firing approaching the final turn with Hurrikane Kingcole in tow.
As the field passed the three-quarter clocking in 1:22, Up The Credit looked down a long Hoosier Park stretch and braced for himself for the cavalry charge behind him. Fred and Ginger was able to put a nose in front halfway down the lane as Bolt The Duer loomed large in the background. With a :27.1 final panel, Bolt The Duer powered home to win by one and half lengths. Fred and Ginger overcame a taxing trip and battled gamely to finish second. Rockincam, last year’s Dan Patch victor, used his same off the pace tactics to charge home and finish third with Jason Dillander at the lines. Bolt The Duer returned $7.60 to his backers as the publics’ second choice.
“Pete (Foley) told me before the race that he has gate speed but does his best work off the pace,” Widger said. “I was really surprised that more horses didn’t leave, but I just wanted to coast out of there and not have to use him too hard. I felt pretty good coming around the last turn, but I’m glad I waited to pull him when I did because it couldn’t have worked out any better. The trip, the horse, I have just been extremely blessed and want to thank Pete for giving me the chance to drive this horse. It was a great race.”
Widger picked up the drive for Foley after his regular driver, Mark Macdonald, was unable to make the trek to Indiana due to unfavorable weather conditions restricting travel on the east coast.
Bolt the Duer notched his first win of the season as Widger recorded his first Dan Patch victory in the 20 year running of the race. Owned by All Star Racing Inc, the four-year-old horse has bankrolled over $1.2 million dollars throughout his illustrious racing career.
Hoosier Park’s Dan Patch Invitational saw measurable success on all fronts. Excitement pervaded throughout the grandstand as a large, enthusiastic crowd welcomed the 20th installment of Hoosier Park’s signature event to the track. The wagering front also saw much success and offered remarkable value to the horseplayer with the introduction of a signature $10,000 Guaranteed Pick-4 and a $25,000 Guaranteed Superfecta for the Dan Patch Invitational race. The bettors came out in full force as the handle increases were felt both on track and through export wagering. The total handle was up 44% over the previous year’s number.