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>O’Brien Award finalist Betterthancheddar put forth a second solid off-the-pace qualifying effort on Monday morning at Mohawk, prompting his pilot to produce some high praise in advance of his 2012 debut.

Driven by Scott Zeron, the four-year-old pacer used a :26.4 final quarter to stop the teletimer in 1:52.1 and open up on the field by seven lengths. Pepsi North America Cup eligible D Terminata (26-1 in Trot's N.A. Cup Spring Book) finished second for Hall of Fame trainer Bob McIntosh, clocking his own mile in 1:53.3.

“He is without a doubt the best horse I’ve ever driven,” said Zeron. “From last year to this year, he’s gotten smarter, faster and stronger.

“He loves to race and beat his competition,” he continued. “These qualifiers have been just that. I’ve sat him in and let him chase down the leaders with ease.”

The reinsman also says to keep an eye out for the bay this weekend at the Campbellville oval as the plan is to enter him in the Open Pace.

The son of Bettors Delight captured his first qualifier of the year in 1:52.4 on May 7.

Betterthancheddar, who found the winner’s circle in last year’s Breeders Crown, Windy City Pace, American National and Cane Pace, has banked $777,116 in lifetime earnings for trainer Casie Coleman and owners West Wins Stable and Steve Calhoun.

Also on the qualifying card, OSS Super Final runner-up Oh Sweet Baby charted her first line of the year for the Baillargeon brothers, trainer Ben and driver Mario.

The four-year-old daughter of Angus Hall trotted her own mile in 1:57 and finished third by one and a half lengths. Miss Dangles (1:56.4, Scott Zeron) and Whiskey Tax (Tom Durand) finished first and second, respectively.


(with files from WEG)