Big Box Hanover (Uncle Peter) has been a solid force in the Open Trot at Saratoga Casino Hotel since coming to town last year. This season, the Larry Stalbaum trainee has been a picture of consistency and came into Sunday’s try in the feature with three Open wins to his credit this year but while finishing in the top three in 21 of his 31 starts in ’22.
Big Box Hanover finished second or third in four consecutive starts in the Open before drawing his best post in months on Sunday afternoon. The five year old wound up being the betting public’s 3-5 favorite in the $16,000 Open and Stalbaum flashed speed from post four with the talented trotter. Yielding in the early going to Majestic Fire (Luke Hanners), Big Box Hanover sat the pocket in a first lap that went in 58 seconds.
Majestic Fire, who won the Open two weeks ago, was in complete control through three quarters in 1:26.2 but Big Box Hanover popped the pocket around the final turn. Longshot Quadratic Bluechip (Chris Long) came surging up the rail in the stretch but it was Big Box Hanover who hit the wire first to register his fourth Open score of the season and eighth victory overall in the ’22 campaign. An earner of six figures for the third consecutive year, Big Box Hanover’s fourth Open win came in 1:56.1 on Sunday.
The Open winner is owned by the Red, White and Blue Racing Stable of Matamoras, PA. Quadratic Blue Chip was the runner-up on Sunday to complete a $20.40 exacta while Majestic Fire wrapped up the $95 triple in the feature.
Photo: Melissa Simser