Erge Baboche and driver Stephane Brosseau were able to take advantage of a crazy three-horse speed duel early in the mile to come on later and nip 2/5 race favorite and track record hold Margarita Bi (Denis St Pierre) in winning the feature trot at Hippodrome 3R Tuesday.
The ninth race feature started off with Beer Maggs (Kevin Maguire) and Bel Gazou (Martin Gingras) and Margarita Bi all vying for control of the early lead. As they race around the first turn they were three across and it looked at first that no one was going to give it up.
That was nearly the case when Denis St Pierre backed off Margarita Bi and dropped her right into the two-hole spot after the opening quarter mile in :28.2.
But the duel between Beer Maggs and Bel Gazou was not over yet. Those two locked horns and raced neck and neck to the half mile marker in a speedy :57.3 as Margarita Bi was content to sit the pocket trip and the newcomer in the picture was Erge Baboche and Brosseau as they came up second-over. When Bel Gazou had enough of being parked first-over and spit out the bit, Brosseau sent Erge Baboche three-wide and now they were working their way up to challenge Beer Maggs to the three-quarters in 1:27.3.
The action only got tougher as once they straighten out in the stretch for the drive home, St Pierre sent Margarita Bi to the passing lane and she was able to collar and start to pass Beer Maggs only to see a very determined Erge Babouche, who still had a head of steam and trotted on by at the wire to win by a neck in 1:58.2. Margarita Bi was second with Beer Maggs third by only a half length in the photo finish.
Sent off at odds of 5-1, Erge Babouche paid $12.90 to win. The seven-year-old grey gelding by Newtown is trained, owned and was bred by Eric Posson of Becancour, QC and posted his fourth win this year in ten starts. His time of 1:58.2 tied Erge Babouche’s lifetime mark.
Race favorites had a rough night at 3R as only two of the ten races on the program saw the favorites come to the winner’s circle. The highest payoff of the evening came in the fourth race trot when Marie Auger drove McSween to victory at odds of 20-1 and paid $43.20 to win.
From the Quebec Jockey Club