Day At The Track


09:10 PM 06 Jul 2007 NZST
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Prime Xample and Rick Dane
Prime Xample and Rick Dane
Courtesy of Four Footed Fotos - 2007 The Sox Pacing Series leg two division

On Saturday, July 7, Hawthorne Race Course will host the finals of the $35,500 Cubs Pacing series for colts and geldings.

By virtue of his two wins in the preliminary heats, Don Ray’s Deadly Attack drew the rail and has been installed the 5-2 morning line favourite in a field of eight.

When the series got underway on June 23, Deadly Attack was more an afterthought than a perceived contender, but after winning the first leg of the series at odds of 14-1, and then returning a week later to wire a field as the favorite, suddenly Deadly Attack has become the genuine article. At least his talented driver Ryan Anderson thinks so.

“This horse is very good right now,” said Anderson, following the win last week.

“The trainer (Don Ray) had her ready and she paced a fast final half.” Anderson felt so good following the gate-to-wire score that Anderson added, “I think this horse will win the final, I really do.”

The most likely threat to Deadly Attack appears to be Tanah Merah Farm’s Mahdi. In the first leg of the series, Mahdi came flying late, like a runaway train, to just miss catching Deadly Attack. Mahdi paced the final quarter in a blazing 25.3 seconds, but settled for second.

Bypassing the second leg of the Cub’s Series, Mahdi’s trainer Erv Miller elected to send the gelded son of Ft Apache Hanover to Martinsville, where Mahdi, driven by Erv’s son Marcus, proceeded to demolish a field of overmatched pacers, winning by 8 1/2 lengths and setting up Saturday evening’s rematch with Deadly Attack.

Mahdi (7-2) will be driven in the Cub’s Final by Hawthorne’s leading driver Brent Holland.

Skipper’s Top Dog (6-1) and Fox Valley Curahee (4-1), two serious contenders, figure to be closing ground late, but may need a fast early pace to make their potent kicks effective. They each paced sub 26 final quarters, in the second leg of the series last week.

Completing the field are Balvowski (15-1), One More Step (8-1), and Yankee Challenger (15-1). The Cubs Pacing Series Final is the eighth race on Saturday’s thirteen race program.

Sox Pacing Series Final-Preview

Prime Xample was an okay Australian import for Rock and Roll Stables in 2006, winning four times and earning $13,681.

In 2007, and more specifically the last two weeks, Prime Xample has dominated her rivals, winning consecutive legs of The Sox Pacing Series, and will be heavily favored to capture the $33,500 finals on Sunday, July 8, at Hawthorne Race Course.

Two weeks ago the daughter of By Xample set her lifetime mark when she paced in 1:52.2 for Hall of Fame driver Dave Magee. Last Sunday Rick Dane assumed control of the mare and she jogged again, winning under wraps in 1:53:4. Surely, there must be some explanation for such tremendous improvement.

“Like many imports I’ve had, she kept getting hot,” said Kim Roth, trainer of Prime Xample.

“We thought if we changed her bridle from opened to closed, she’d be unable to see other horses; and that might settle her down. Thankfully, that seems to have done the trick.”

Rick Dane could have had the drive on Sunday, but he elected to give it up to “the more experienced money driver,” so Magee will be in the sulky when the fillies and mares reach the starter.

Prime Xample will start from the six post in a field of ten.

Should Prime Xample falter, either Fox Valley Glitz or Jack’s Magic Jewel would be the most likely to seize the moment. Fox Valley Glitz finished a well-beaten second to Prime Xample in the series’ first leg, while Jack’s Magic Jewel managed a clear second in Prime Xample’s second leg romp last Sunday.

The field in post position order: Josephine Bow(1), Barus Oxford Lady(2), Fox Valley Glitz(3), Jack’s Magic Jewel(4), KewlGurl(5), Prime Xample(6), Sporty Truffle(7), Chevie Magic(8), Pretty Cape(9), and Fox Valley Manners(10).

The Sox Pacing Series Final will be Hawthorne’s 8th race on their 12 race program.


Hawthorne Race Course presents live harness beginning on June 22 and concluding on August 5. During this time only Mondays will be a dark day for our live program.

We are located at 3501 S. Laramie Avenue, Cicero, IL, 60804.

By Mitch Demick for Hawthorne Race Course

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