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Pretender Wins 3-Year-Old Debut at Freehold

If there was a future book for the Dexter Cup, Pretender would almost certainly be one of the favorites. He asserted his status with a dominant victory at Freehold Raceway on Friday (April 15), crushing a conditioned field by twelve lengths.
Last year, Pretender won twice from twelve starts, with earnings of more than $115,000. In the final start of his 2-year-old campaign, he finished third, beaten a half-length, in the Valley Victory at the Meadowlands. He qualified for the first time this year last Saturday, trotting a mile at the Meadowlands on April 9.
Leaving from post position three at Freehold on Friday, driver Yannick Gingras initially rated Pretender in fourth place early on. However, Gingras wasn’t content there for long, and Pretender rushed up on the outside and grabbed the lead as they passed the opening quarter mark. From there, Pretender’s lead continued to expand. He was seven lengths in front as he passed the three-quarter pole, and no one could dream of posing a serious challenge to him. He cruised under the wire under confident handling from Gingras, trotting a mile in 1:56.1.
Pretender’s now won three times from 13 starts. He’s owned by Caviart Farms, John Fielding, Herb Liverman, and Joyce McClelland, and trained by Nancy Takter. He’s nominated for the Dexter Cup, which will take place on May 7, with eliminations on April 30.
Live racing at Freehold continues on Saturday (April 16), starting at 12:30 PM.