Horseman Rob Oliver took the reins on Saturday night at Hanover Raceway and guided home his first winner from the sulky.
Walkerton, Ont. resident Oliver got away third early on with the debuting three-year-old pacer My Friend Diaz in the ninth race before picking up cover and rallying home for the three length victory in 1:58.3. Hanover's Douglas Lever owns and trains the Ramabaran gelding.
Oliver, who has trained 99 winners over the course of his career, has only made 41 appearances in the sulky in the past seven years.
The other story of the night was Larry Hall’s continued perfection in the training ranks.
Rustlemewithenvy got the job done with Trevor Henry in the race bike in the night’s final dash, pushing the Tara, Ont. native to six wins in six starts at the Hanover oval in 2012. The win was executed in impressive fashion, with Henry tipping three-wide in the backstretch to come on and eventual overtake the tempo-setting Peruvian Grin and Dale Fritz. The time of the mile 1:57.4, improving the three-year-old Rustler Hanover gelding's personal best from 1:59.1, a mark also set in Hanover.
Hanover Raceway hosted its annual Pepsi night on Saturday sending racing fans home with thousands of dollars in prizes sponsored by Pepsi. Another large crowd filled the grandstand and enjoyed an excellent card of 12 races.
Hanover Raceway returns to action on Saturday, June 30 with post-time set for 7:15 p.m. and then Thursday night racing begins on July 5 with McCain Customer Appreciation Day. Hanover Raceway will kick off its Thursday night races in July with $1 hotdogs and fries.
(With files from Hanover Raceway)