Day At The Track

Grand Circuit to Hoosier & Meadowlands this weekend

02:28 AM 01 Nov 2018 NZDT
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This Week: Carl Erskine Trot, Monument Circle, the USS Indianapolis and the Crossroads of America, Harrah's Hoosier Park, Anderson, Ind.; and Kindergarten finals, Meadowlands Racetrack, East Rutherford, N.J.

Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit remains at Hoosier Park this weekend as the track will have four stakes races on the Friday (Nov. 2) card. Leading the way is the $256,000 Carl Erskine Trot for 3-year-old male trotters. Also on tap will be the $190,000 Monument Circle for 3-year-old male pacers, the $137,000 Crossroads of America for 3-year-old filly trotters and the $113,000 USS Indianapolis for 3-year-old filly pacers.

On Saturday (Nov. 3), Meadowlands Racetrack will card the four Kindergarten Series finals for 2-year-old pacers and trotters. The 2-year-old colt trot carries a purse of $221,540, the 2-year-old filly trotters will race for $236,060, the purse for the 2-year-old colt pace is $173,800 and the 2-year-old filly pacers will race for $148,700.

Complete entries for the races are available at this link.

Last time: The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono was in the Grand Circuit spotlight last weekend as the Pennsylvania oval hosted 12 Breeders Crown finals.

McWicked was a 1:49.3 winner in the Breeders Crown Open Pace. Curtis Salonick photo.

Favored McWicked ($3.80) moved to the lead at the five-eighths pole, easily putting away Lazarus N, and then opened up to win by 3-1/4 lengths in 1:49.3 in the $430,000 Breeders Crown Open Pace.

Brian Sears drove McWicked for trainer Casie Coleman, as he won his third Breeders Crown trophy on the night. Early leader Filibuster Hanover rallied for second, while Donttellmeagain finished third. Mcwicked has now earned more than $3.7 million in his career after posting his 32nd lifetime win.

"He's real easy to drive and he does everything you want. It's great to have the opportunity to drive such nice horses," said Sears.

"I always think he's gonna be good," said trainer Casie Coleman, "but to think he is going to do what he did this year...I think he is better now than he was at three. He is a big team effort no doubt. I hope he is going to race next year, but that is not my call. It is up to Mr. James (owner Edward James of the S S G Stables.) I think he will be at stud, but I hope he will race, our team would really like that."

Filibuster Hanover took the field to the quarter in :26.1, but Lazarus N was immediately out and winging, taking the field past the half in :55.2. McWicked pulled up the backside and easily disposed of his challenger, rolling past three-quarters in 1:22.2 before Sears took his foot off the gas in the stretch.

McWicked is a 7-year-old bay horse by McArdle, out of the Western Ideal mare Western Sahara. He was bred by Andray Farm of Pennsylvania.

Emoticon Hanover (Daniel Dube) won back-to-back Breeders Crown trophies after capturing the $250,000 Breeders Crown Mare Trot.

Caprice Hill (Brian Sears) was on the lead at the first :27.1 quarter, before being quickly overtaken by Ariana G (Yannick Gingras) just past that marker. Ariana G held the lead to the :56.4 half, trailed by Emoticon Hanover and Broadway Donna.

Broadway Donna was up to engage her on the outside just past the half, but Ariana G held that lead to the 1:25.2 three-quarters before Ice Attraction came up on the outside to make a try for the lead. While those two were looking for the finish line, Emoticon Hanover came charging on the outside to pass them both for the win in 1:54.1.

The winner is trained by Luc Blais and owned by Determination.

"She's nice right now, she's good," said winning driver Daniel Dube. "We went to the passing lane last week, we went to the outside today. She does everything right, she is more relaxed. She is a special mare. I've known Luc (Blais) a long time, but mostly to see him in the paddock. Now we have got to know each other, which is good."

Ice Attraction (Ãke Svanstedt) was second after a sweeping last to first bid and Caprice Hill was third.

Complete recaps of all the races are available at the Grand Circuit website.

Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards.

Here are the leaders following the past weekend.

Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick - 1,432.5; 2. Yannick Gingras - 1,370; 3. David Miller - 1,132.5; 4. Scott Zeron - 704; 5. Andrew McCarthy - 618.5.

Trainers: 1. Ron Burke - 1,274.5; 2. Jimmy Takter - 1,128; 3. Tony Alagna - 671.5; 4. Julie Miller - 451; 5. Jim Campbell - 437.

Owners: 1. Fashion Farms - 325; 2. Diamond Creek Racing - 274.6; 3. Burke Racing Stable - 273; 4. Weaver Bruscemi - 256.5; 5. Marvin Katz - 229.1.

Looking ahead: Grand Circuit action will take place next week at Dover Downs as the Delaware track will host the Matron Stakes for 2-year-olds of both sexes and gaits on the Thursday (Nov. 8) program.

by Paul Ramlow, for the Grand Circuit

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