7/15/2017 7:39:58 PM
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) Huntsville held off Downbytheseaside by a head in the $738,550 Meadowlands Pace on Saturday night.
It was the fifth Pace victory for driver Tim Tetrick. He trails only recently retired Hall of Famer John Campbell, who had seven wins in the Meadowlands Racetrack"s signature race for 3-year-olds.
Trainer Ray Schnittker improved his Pace record to 2 for 2. He combined with Tetrick to win in 2010 with One More Laugh.
Huntsville continued his remarkable consistency with a 12th win in 18 starts. He has never finished worse than second.
Huntsville got away fourth in the early stages before charging past Blood Line to grab the lead down the backstretch.
The 1-5 favorite appeared comfortably in charge on the final turn as Downbytheseaside tipped to the outside to mount a challenge.
It was a two-horse battle in the lane as Huntsville dug in while Downbytheseaside relentlessly ate into his lead.
The finish line arrived just in time for last season"s 2-year-old champion to earn his first major win of this campaign.
""My horse was tired late,"" Tetrick said. ""He kept pushing all the way to the wire.""
The time for the mile was a lifetime best 1:47 4/5 for Huntsville, who earned $369,275 for the ownership team of Schnittker, Ted Gewertz and Steven Arnold.
Huntsville paid $2.40, $2.10 and $2.10. Downbytheseaside returned $2.80 and $2.40 as the 4-1 second choice. Classic Pro paid $6 to show.