DELAWARE, Ohio (AP) - Michael's Power won the Little Brown Jug on Thursday, beating Sweet Lou by 1 3/4 lengths in the second leg of the Triple Crown for 3-year-old pacers.
Driven by the Scott Zeron and trained by Casie Coleman, Michael's Power had the fastest opening quarter in event history at 25.2 seconds, and finished the mile in 1:50.0. In getting to the lead, Zeron was able to control the race and hold off Sweet Lou and third-place Bettor's Edge.
"I was going right down the road," Zeron said. "The [first quarter] scared me a little bit. It's an absolute honor. He's easy to drive. I can't believe I won the Little Brown Jug."
Michael's Power, owned by Jeffery Snyder of New York, has 13 victories in 16 starts this season with earnings over $1.2 million. He was lightly raced as a 2-year-old, making only three starts, winning twice.
Coleman became the second female trainer to win the Little Brown Jug.
"Since I was a little kid, I was eager to watch this race, let alone have a horse in it," Coleman said. "It's just unbelievable. It really hasn't sunk in yet, but the Little Brown Jug is just awesome.
"I never give a driver instructions. I told him win. That was his only instruction."
Dynamic Youth won the Cane Pace, the first leg of the Triple Crown, but wasn't eligible for the Little Brown Jug and his owners decided not to enter the race as a supplemental entry. The third leg of the Triple Crown is the Messenger Stakes at Yonkers Raceway on Nov. 10.
Michael's Power and Sweet Lou won the elimination heats.
In winning the first elimination in 1:52.3, Michael's Power followed Bolt The Duer until the head of the strength and won by a nose. Bolt The Duer was scratched from the final.
Sweet Lou won his elimination in 1:51.0 for driver Dave Palone, leading wire-to-wire.