Sunday, October 29, 2023

Last week, Strawberry Fields dazzled in a 6¼-length romp in the first leg of the TrackMaster Series (with a rating of 74 or less) for fillies and mares on the pace as the 3-5 favorite, and having the target on her back in leg two proved to be no problem for the Julie Miller trainee, as she came back to score again at The Meadowlands Saturday night.

The 3-year-old daughter of Sweet Lou-Bettor Beware fired quickly from post nine in the bulky 11-horse field before yielding to 8-5 second choice Virtual Kiss, who led at the quarter in :27 and the half in :56.

Better B Sawyer came after the leader at three-quarters, and actually got a short lead as the field hit the top of the stretch, which created a bit of a traffic problem for Strawberry Fields, who was in tight quarters in the pocket through the lane and nearing the finish, but winning driver Tyler Miller did everything right to record the score.

“I was being patient and knew she had lots of pace,” said Tyler, the 25-year-old son of Julie and Andy Miller. “The big track and long stretch is definitely what helped us weave through, find a seam, and charge through for the win. She has loved moving here to The Meadowlands.”

Strawberry Fields, who returned $3.80 to win as the 4-5 favorite, hit the wire 1¼ lengths in front of Shes A Live Wire in a lifetime-best 1:52.3 after that late burst of horse-splitting speed earned her a fourth lifetime win. Blueberry Shake finished third.

LITTLE BIG MAN: It was another good night for fans of Dave Little, as the veteran member of the Big M TV team selected seven winners on top to go along with four cold exactas. Little’s big score came in the first race with Brazen Brazilian, who paid $22.80 to win, and topped an exacta that came back $72.60. He also had the late double, which paid $24.60.

A LITTLE MORE: Braxten Boyd was the driving star of the night, visiting the winner’s circle four times, including a sweep of the late double. None of Boyd’s winners were sent to the gate as the public choice. … All-source handle on the 13-race program totaled $2,152,460. … Racing resumes Friday at 6:20 p.m.

PHOTO: Strawberry Fields and driver Tyler Miller take a division of the TrackMaster Series at The Meadowlands Saturday night. (Credit: Lisa Photo)