Little Rocket Man earned his third straight win in three starts for 2021 and scored the quickest mile of the season so far Friday, April 9 in the Open Pace. Driven by John DeLong, Little Rocket Man posted the first sub-150 mile of the year at Harrah’s Hoosier Park.
Starting from post six, Little Rocket Man eased his way over to the rail at the back of the pack while Fan of Terror and Trace Tetrick established fractions of :26.3, :54.1 and 1:22.2. This gave Little Rocket Man the opportunity he needed to close in the stretch, winning by one length in `1:49.3, a final panel in :26.3. Family Recipe and LeWayne Miller finished second over Brassy Hanover and Sam Widger, who also closed well at the finish.
Owned by Russ Beeman and Jack Freeman, Little Rocket Man paid $4.20 for the win as the favorite. The Rockin Image gelding, trained by Missy Essig, was bred by Victory Hill Farm and now has 20 wins in 32 career starts. He now has in excess of $315,000 in earnings.
Earlier in the evening, Townline Jated and Brandon Bates were victorious in a leg of the Mark Fransen Memorial. After setting the first fraction in :27.3, they fended off a challenge by Jewels Virgin and John DeLong in the second half of the race to hold on for the win by a neck over Jewels Virgin. La Tomcat and Don Eash finished third. The time of the mile was 1:53.1.
Trained by Walter Haynes Jr., Townline Jated paid $9.20 for the win. The four-year-old Riggins gelding is owned by Maynard Miller and Michael Yoder.
Also a winner on the card was Certifiable in a leg of the Jerry Landess Memorial. Driven by Trace Tetrick, the Rockin Image three-year-old was a comfortable winner in 1:53.0. Erv Miller trains Certifiable, who paid $20.20 for the win. Ervin Miller Stable and Louis Willinger own the gelding bred by Mystical Marker Farms LLC.