Day At The Track

Busy weekend for Per Henriksen

10:54 AM 14 Oct 2016 NZDT
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Per Henriksen
Per Henriksen

Fraserville, ON --- Kawartha Downs' Per Henriksen, lauded for his expertise with harness racing trotters, will make a rare appearance at The Raceway at Western Fair District with a horse that is the perfect example of why he is called ‘the fixer.’

Countless trainers, frustrated with trotters who refused to trot, have sent Henriksen their problem horses over the years. One of the latest is the 3-year-old trotting colt St James Gate. A son of Majestic Son, the horse had two trainers prior to heading to Henriksen’s barn a couple of months ago. As a 2-year-old he made three qualifying attempts and broke stride and was distanced in each one.

He headed to a new barn for his sophomore season which saw him attempt to qualify five times, all with the exact same result, a miscue at some point in the mile. Henriksen worked with the horse and his first charted line without a break anywhere in the mile came in a qualifying race at Mohawk on Sept. 6 where Henriksen drove him to a fifth place finish. It was the horse’s first start for Henriksen.

St James Gate made his first pari-mutuel start on Sept. 28 at Grand River Raceway where he won with Henriksen in the bike in 2:02. He’ll make his second career start Friday night (Oct. 14) at London where he’s drawn post five in the first race.

Jeff Ruch and Alan Richardson bred and own the trotter who is a full brother to $351,093 winner Rock Of Cashel.

This is just the fifth time this year Henriksen has made the trip from his Norwood, Ontario base to London. Before that he’ll start five horses Thursday night (Oct. 13) at Mohawk, three in the Ontario Autumn Series, and one at Flamboro Downs. In addition to St James Gate, he also has Cheer For The Cats racing at London Friday night along with Marquis Volo racing at Mohawk.

Saturday night at Mohawk he’ll harness three starters in the C$250,000 Ontario Sires Stakes Super Finals. Bee In Charge and Muscle Hustle are in the 3-year-old trotting colt division and Jangone is in the 3-year-old filly trot split.

Henriksen will be back in London on Monday where he’ll start Covert Operative, a winner of $186,215 in his career. He finished second, by a head, in Kawartha’s signature race, the Goodtimes Invitational, to Ramas Last Son.

An O’Brien Award winner as Horseman of the Year in 2007, Henriksen is enjoying one of his best seasons ever this year with $910,695 in earnings to date in 2016. His all time best in terms of purses was 2008 when his charges took in $1.53 million. The native of Norway has a total of 1,040 wins lifetime for $14.3 million in purses.

Kawartha Downs

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