"They always ask me the gender thing," Toscano said Tuesday at the news conference for the Hambletonian draw. "I don't think there is a person that does this for a living, man or woman, that wouldn't want to get to the Hambletonian."
Toscano's shot at history rests on the legs and health of 7-2 morning-line second choice Chapter Seven, a 3-year-old bay colt who has won eight of 10 career starts, earning $312,049 lifetime. Only two of those starts have come in 2011, however, after Chapter Seven struggled with pneumonia earlier this year.
Chapter Seven's second start was last Saturday's Hambletonian elimination when he finished second to Broad Bahn.
"He's really a remarkable horse," Toscano said of her colt. "After the start of this year, we weren't really sure. And to tribute the owners, they said: 'Take care of the horse, we'll worry about the racing when the horse gets right.' "
Two of the owners Toscano credits are Richard Gutnick of Blue Bell and Gary Cocco of Newtown Square.
Chapter Seven is Gutnick's and Cocco's first Hambletonian starter. He also is Toscano's first Hambo trainee.
Windsong's Legacy, the 2004 Hambletonian winner, sired Chapter Seven, who is being driven out of post four by Hall of Famer Mike Lachance, a four-time Hambletonian winner and the second-most prolific purse-earner in harness racing history.
Toscano's goal is to make history, not as the first woman to win the Hambletonian, but as the 86th trainer to do so.
"I think that women have to understand that they can pretty much accomplish anything in this world," Toscano said. "If you want to be president, vice president, or a horse trainer. It shouldn't be a limitation at this point. Set your goals and go for them."
The 15-race Hambletonian Day program begins at 11:30 a.m., with the Hambletonian going off as the ninth race at 3:43 p.m. The race can be seen live on NBC10.
$1.5 Million Hambletonian
Here is the draw for Saturday's 86th Hambletonian, held at the Meadowlands in East Rutherford, N.J.
TV: NBC10, 3 p.m.
Radio: Sirius-XM 93-XM 209
POLE POS. HORSE DRIVER ODDS
1 Broad Bahn George Brennan 4-1
2 Manofmanymissions Andy Miller 9-5
3 Fawkes Yannick Gingras 15-1
4 Chapter Seven Mike Lachance 7-2
5 Whit Tim Tetrick 8-1
6 Whisky Tax Randy Waples 15-1
7 Opening Night John Campbell 10-1
8 Magnum Kosmos Brian Sears 15-1
9 Luckycharm Hanover David Miller 15-1
10 Pastor Stephen Ron Pierce 10-1