Best friends vie in stakes final

3:03 PM, Oct 10, 2011   |    comments
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FRYEBURG, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Two race horses who are best buddies will challenge each other in the Maine Standbred Stakes Final on Sunday at Scarborough Downs. The unusual circumstance delights Kevin Switzer who owns both horses and could see a big pay day in the eighty-thousand-dollar stakes final.

Maeve and Barbara Ann are the two fastest fillies in Maine this year. They grew up on the same farm and are inseperable.  While Maeve handles seperations better, Barbara Ann becomes noticeably agitated if Maeve leaves her for any reason.

"They love each other, they really do," said Denise McNitt who is married to Switzer. "We try to keep our horses in a natural environment and they grow up in fields running around and playing and when they came into training they just really like each other," McNitt said.  She names all the horses on the farm.  Barbara Ann is named for the Beach Boy song.  Maeve is named for the Celtic god of war.

 Maeve had the upper hand by setting a divisional track record (1:56.1)while winning a stakes race at Scarborough Downs this summer.

However, Barbara Ann has come on.  Last week, Barbara Ann won easily at Fryeburg while Maeve found herself in tough racing position and finished fifth.

Because they have the same owner, they have raced in different divisions throughout the summer.  Now they will go head to head with six other horses in the stakes final.

Switzer says it should be a very competitive race as there are some terrific horses in the fields and "the gloves come off on Sunday."

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