Wiggle It Jiggleit wins Dan Patch

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Ted Black

August 13th, 2016

In the moments after Always B Miki captured the $500,000 Ben Franklin final at Pocono Downs last month with both Wiggle It Jiggleit and Freaky Feet Pete in his wake, many harness racing pundits were perhaps inclined to concede that the Jimmy Takter trainee was in line to be champion aged pacer and potentially horse of the year.

But after Friday night's $325,000 Dan Patch Invitational at Hoosier Park, onlookers quickly realized that the chase for champion aged pacer and horse of the year will need several more months to decide.

Roughly a week after Always B Miki failed as the odds-on favorite in the $250,000 U.S. Pacing Championship at the Meadowlands, a race won by Shamballa with Wiggle It Jiggleit second, the Takter trainee was the slight 8-5 favorite by nearly $1,100 in a gross win pool of nearly $65,000 for the Dan Patch, with Wiggle It Jiggleit the solid choice.

When the gate folded in the Dan Patch, Wiggle It Jiggleit (Montrell Teague) left alertly from along the rail with Freaky Feet Pete (Trace Tetrick) away well to protect the pocket while Always B Miki tucked into fourth. Wiggle It Jiggleit led the field by the opener in a modest 27.2.

Wiggle It Jiggleit led the field down the backside, but Always B Miki was clearly not content to sit in and allow the reigning horse of the year to dictate the tempo. Always B Miki made a successful brush bid to take command from 'Wiggle' before reaching the halfway station in 54.4.

Always B Miki led the field through the far turn and by three-quarters in 1:22 as Freaky Feet Pete again took up the unenviable task of chasing down the favorite from first over. Wiggle It Jiggleit continued to sit the pocket trip and appeared to have plenty left in reserve while awaiting racing room.

At the top of the lane, Always B Miki shook loose from Freaky Feet Pete, but Wiggle It Jiggleit looked poised to pounce on the favorite. Teague looked to angle him out but could not find room, but he did find ample racing room along the inside as Always B Miki began to drift under serious urging from driver David Miller.

As Always B Miki drifted out late, Wiggle It Jiggleit forged through along the inside and shifted gears when given clear sailing and easily overhauled Always B Miki for nearly a length victory in 1:49.1.

A four-year-old son of Mr. Wiggles owned and trained by George Teague, Jr., Wiggle It Jiggleit has now won 11 of 17 starts and banked over $1 million this year. Wiggle It Jiggleit has won 34 of 43 lifetime starts and banked roughly $3.15 million in his career and the reigning horse of the year has served notice that he will be much tougher to dethrone than previously anticipated.