ICF CHAMPIONSHIPS AT BALMORAL

05:27 AM 25 May 2007 NZST
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Saratoga John
Saratoga John - Rolled to a 1 ½ length victory in 1:53.2
Onsite Photographic - Saratoga John continued a nice early season run with a convincing win in Saturday's first of two Cardinal Stake Eliminations.

Six championships for state-bred horses will be decided Saturday night (May 26) at our sister track Balmoral Park.

The three-year-old finalists for the Cardinal and Violet stakes for both pacers and trotters were decided last weekend on the south suburban one-miler.

Earning their way into the $50,400 Cardinal Final for ICF colts were a pair of Erv Miller trained winning favorites—Saratoga John (1:53.2) and Mahdi (1:52.4).

They’ll be joined by the second through fifth place finishers in two eliminations races: Big Puff Doggie, Escapefromalcatraz, Booze Crusin and Arthur B Skipalong from the first split and Brother Vinny, One Park Place, D Bird and Starsky from the second.

HBH Standardbreds’ Sportsfancy will carry the favoritism into the $48,000 Violet championships for pacing fillies after breezing to her third consecutive easy victory (1:53.1) in an elimination last Saturday.

She’ll be challenged by the second through eighth place elimination finishers Perdido, Mrs Grand Seven, Lil Fast Corvette, Looking At You, Colette, Millers Creek Heart and Dewers Gingernlime. Apache Trick and Faith Leigh drew byes into the final.

Before He Cheats (Jason Dillander) will carry a five-race winning streak into the $50,500 Cardinal Trot Championship. The Dirk Simpson trainee blew past in the lane with a :27 last panel in Sunday’s first elim.

John D Finn’s Road Trippin pulled off a huge upset in the second split with his first pari-mutuel victory, lighting up the tote board at $43.80, and snapping runner-up Mystical Banker’s three-race streak with a head decision in 1:58.4.

Spunky Vic, Just Amos, Orphan Victor, Pourmeatequlashela, Vapor Maker, Sweet Willie and Oxford Balance will be the other Cardinal Trot finalists.

Erv Miller’s Scarlet Valley drew a bye into the $45,300 Violet Final where she’ll be joined by elimination winner Mogo On The Gogogo (1:57.4) and the second through ninth pace finishers J C Josie, Vapor Rises, Filly Hotspur, AJ’s Little One, Tableau, Star Swagger, Lovely Louann and Bandelin.

Also to be decided Saturday is the $40,000 Big Tom Stake for aged state bred pacers featuring national renowned state ICF horses Thisbigdogwilfight and My Boy David, as well as the $25,000 Loyal Opposition stake for filly and mare aged pacers.

Courtesy Of Mike Paradise, Publicity Director, Maywood Park

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