SKOWHEGAN — Saturday’s Walter H. Hight Memorial Pace wasn’t Bet You’s first race at the Skowhegan State Fair. It wasn’t even the horse’s first race at Skowhegan this week. But the Hight Memorial certainly turned out to be Bet You’s best race on his home track.

Owned by Thomas Dillon of Anson, Bet You and driver Heath Campbell held off a strong charge by Escape The News and driver Ron Cushing to win in a photo finish in one of the closest Hight Memorial races in recent years.

Bet You won with a time of one minute, 52.3 seconds, almost a full second off the track and state record set by Achilles Blue Chip in the 2014 Hight Memorial. Escape The News was second also at 1:52.3. A Sweet Ride, driven by James Whittemore, was third at 1:54.2. The trifecta paid $41.80

Saturday’s win was the second win this week for Bet You and Campbell at the Skowhegan State Fair. Last Sunday, they took first place in the 10th race of the day with a time of 1:55.3 In July, Bet You took third place in the Paul Bunyan Invitational at Bangor Raceway.

“He’s run pretty good of late,” Dillon said after celebrating in the winner’s circle. “He’s run a number of races this year, so I figured he’d be competitive in that field.”

Just as he did in his race at Skowhegan last Sunday, Bet You led the Hight right from the start. At the half mile, Bet You led A Sweet Ride, with Escape The News third. Bet You’s time for the half mile was 55.1 seconds. With a quarter mile to go, Escape The News and Cushing made their move, getting to the outside and passing A Sweet Ride.

Escape The News continued closing on Bet You down the stretch, and as they crossed the finish line, it was tough to see with the naked eye which horse had won. Dillon wondered if his horse had held on until the official announcement was made a minute later.

“That’s where it happens. The two horse (Escape The News), he raced very well,” Dillon said. “I’ve been beaten that way before.”

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

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</URL>Twitter: @TLazarczykMTM

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