Day At The Track

Battle to take place in Don Ratchford Pace

04:19 AM 23 Nov 2019 NZDT
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Allmyx'sliventexas and Gorgeous For Real head the harness racing cast in Saturday night's featured $7,200 Don Ratchford Pace at Cal Expo Harness..

Watch and Wager LLC will present 10 races with first post set for 6:40 p.m. and the main event goes as the fifth on the program.

Allmyx'sliventexas is a 6-year-old son of Hi Ho Silverheel's who is owned and was bred by Rod and Wayne Knittel, takes his lessons from Bob Johnson and will have Mooney Svendsen back at the controls.

In last week's Open Pace, he was sent off the 6-5 second choice while leaving from the outside post and blasted away from the barrier to make virtually every pole a winning one in a 1:53 2/5 performance.

It was the 32nd lifetime victory for Allymyx'sliventexas and he is now just shy of the $200,000 earnings mark with a 1:50 flat lifetime standard that was established last year at Hoosier Park.

Gorgeous For Real put in a good late move in that top dance last weekend, but had to settle for the exacta completion as the odds-on choice. The 5-year-old goes about his business for the partnership of Schwartz, Wilkinson, Axelrod and O'Neill with Jim Wilkinson training and Luke Plano in the sulky.

A winner of 19 of his 88 appearances, Gorgeous For Real romped here opening night and established his 1:50 3/5 career standard this summer in Indiana. Completing the field are Marced Magic, Bestinthebusiness, Part Time, Coz and Effect and Cowboys Dirtyboots.

Race honors memory of Don Ratchford

Saturday's feature race is named for Don Ratchford, the respected horseman who passed away in August at the age of 75.

Born in Nova Scotia, Don originally came to the United States in 1962 with Hall of Famer Joe O'Brien and quickly established himself as a valuable asset to the success of the O'Brien stable.

Ratchford also worked with such top horseman as Bob Farrington, Jim Dennis, Jack Williams, Bob Williams and Harold Merriam which, he said, "Contributed to whatever success I achieved because of what I learned from them."

Not only was he very successful as a trainer/driver, Don was a partner and operator of Highland Farm, a breeding and training facility under his care from 1980 to 1994.

Among Ratchford's most successful performers were Armbro Guest, Hilarious Brew, Timeron Hanover, Karen's Rowdy One, A Little Bit Rowdy and Karen's Magic One.

Said trainer Barry Abrams, "He was very important to me, because I learned to be horsemen from Don and never would have been a trainer without him.

"He was an outstanding horseman. Give him a sore horse and he would change the shoeing and rub those legs, the way he learned from Joe O'Brien, and get amazing results."

By Mark Ratzky, for Cal Expo Harness

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