The performance equaled the world record for four-year-old pacing horses on a half-mile track. The record of 1:49.2 was first established by Stand Forever on September 19, 2006 at the Delaware County Fairgrounds. The 1:49.2 score shattered the all-time track record at Harrington, which was held by two-time defending Quillen champion, Foiled Again (1:50.1). It was the first ever sub-1:50 mile paced at Harrington, as well.
Betterthancheddar was hustled to the lead from the pole position by driver George Brennan, who wound up chopping out splits of :27.1, :55.1 and 1:22.1 with the son of Bettors Delight-Lady Ashlee Ann. The Casie Coleman pupil uncorked a :27.1 closing quarter to seal the deal by a comfortable margin over Foiled Again and Feel Like A Fool. The remaining cheques went to We Will See and Flipper J.
“He’s such a great horse,” said George Brennan afterwards. “We drew great and that always helps. He’s a terrific horse to drive.”
“Everything worked out,” said trainer/co-owner Casie Coleman. “I didn’t think he’d have any trouble handling the track because he trains on a half-mile. We are really happy with the way he raced. He’s just a special horse.”
Steve Calhoun of Chatham and West Wins Stable of Cambridge, ON share ownership on the 19-time winner, who now boasts a 9-2-0 record from 11 starts this season. The lion’s share of the purse lifted this year’s earnings to $800,750 and his overall cash stash to $1,577,866.
It was the 13th sub-1:50 victory for Betterthancheddar. Only Lis Mara (16), Golden Receiver (15), We Will See (14), Mister Big (14) and Admirals Express (14) have more sub-1:50 wins to date.
The race is named in honour of long-time Delaware legislator Bobby Quillen, who passed away in 2004. Quillen was a popular member of the community who always had horsemen’s best interests at heart.
(With files from Harrington Raceway)