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Exuding Confidence In Alarm Detector

Published: August 1, 2018 7:09 pm ET

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"I feel very confident. We always knew he had the speed. Now that he's got that race under his belt over there, it didn't go the way we wanted it to but at least we know he can go that speed and they all know it too. That's the main thing."

After doing most of the work in the fastest mile ever by a three-year-old trotting colt at The Meadowlands, the connections behind 2017 O'Brien Award winner Alarm Detector head into Saturday's $1 million Hambletonian as pleased as possible.

Driver Trevor Henry and trainer Ben Baillargeon have a tremendous amount of respect for each other and trotting colt Alarm Detector, most recently seen in a tune-up for the Hambletonian last Friday at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Baillargeon was looking for a mile in the 1:54 range. Henry and Alarm Detector responded with a mile in 1:54 flat.

"I wanted a good last quarter but the wind picked up bad the last few races before we qualified so Trevor let him roll the third quarter; that was fine," said Baillargeon. "Trevor said that he was handy and trotting nice, that's all we want. He's ready to go."

Owned by Tom & Elizabeth Rankin of St. Catharines, Ont., Claude Hamel, Ayer's Cliff, Que. and Santo Vena of Brampton, Ont., Alarm Detector (Chapter Seven - Final Countdown) boasts a 7-1-2 summary from his 11 lifetime starts. His only finish out of the top three came on June 23 in his Earl Beal Jr. Memorial elimination at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono.

“For some reason he got on the right line in the second turn and just dove right in, tried to cut the corner too quick," Baillargeon told the USTA. "Trevor had to grab him or he was going to knock somebody down. They all have their bad days at one time or another. We have to forget about it and move on."

Both Baillargeon and Henry will make their debut in the Hambletonian, with both veterans hesitating to predict how the race will shape up. Despite a 10-1 morning line assessment, Henry feels his colt has the versatility in addition to the speed necessary to compete on Saturday.

"I think he can do it from anywhere, you can give him a trip and he'll come home good, he can can do whatever you want with him. That's what makes him a nice colt."

Eighteen three-year-old trotters have been entered to contest Saturday’s 93rd Hambletonian at the Meadowlands Racetrack, thus requiring two eliminations to trim the field to 10 for the $1 million final, which will take place later that afternoon.

The stakes-filled Hambletonian Day card will begin at noon. The Hambletonian and Hambletonian Oaks will be featured on a live 90-minute broadcast on CBS Sports Network from 4-5:30 p.m. (EDT).

Hambletonian - Elimination 2
(PP - Driver - Trainer - Morning Line)
1-Fashionwoodchopper - David Miller - Jim Campbell - 10/1
2-Patent Leather - David Miller - Jim Campbell - 5/1
3-Classichap - Trond Smedshammer - Trond Smedshammer - 6/1
4-Alarm Detector - Trevor Henry - Ben Baillargeon - 10/1
5-Fourth Dimension - Brian Sears - Marcus Melander - 10/1
6-Southwind Chrome - Scott Zeron - Paula Wellwood - 5/1
7-Tactical Landing - Jimmy Takter - Jimmy Takter - 4/1
8-You Know You Do - Yannick Gingras - Jimmy Takter - 8/1
9-Six Pack - Ake Svanstedt - Ake Svanstedt - 2/1

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