Kentucky to crown Sire Stakes champions Sunday

01:54 AM 30 Aug 2014 NZST
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Red Mile, harness racing
Kentucky Sire Stakes Championship finals are Sunday
Photo by Nigel Soult

The best 2- and 3-year-old trotters and pacers in the Bluegrass State will be out in full force at The Red Mile on Sunday night, Aug. 31, as the historic Lexington racetrack hosts the $2 million Kentucky Sires Stakes (KYSS) Championship Night. Each of the eight divisions for 2- and 3-year-old trotters and pacers will vie for a purse of $175,000.

All four 2013 KYSS 2-year-old champions will be on the track in their respective finals on Sunday in hopes of repeating.

Last year's champion colt pacer On Golden Ponder has cruised to a pair of preliminary victories with driver John Campbell. The son of Ponder was on the sidelines all year until KYSS action, and he returned with scores in 1:57.2 and 1:54.3.

Defending filly trot champ Petticoat Affair has finished second and third in both her preliminaries, which have been won by Dress For Success and Twice Too Nice. Petticoat Affair is sandwiched between the two on the starting gate in post 2, with Dress For Success in post 1 and Twice Too Nice in post 3.

The final for sophomore filly pacers features defending divisional champ Somethinincredible and Rollin Deep, both daughters of Ponder. Somethinincredible may have her work cut out for her to repeat as she has finished second to Rollin Deep in both preliminaries. Campbell drives Somethinincredible while fellow Hall of Famer Mike Lachance sits behind Rollin Deep.

The 3-year-old gelding trotter Sorrento Hall rounds out the returning champions, and he starts from post 6 in Race 7 with driver Lachance. The son of Groton Hall's lone win last year came in the KYSS final and he has yet to taste victory this year in six attempts. Both of that division's early rounds have been won by Tinder.

In the finals for 2 year olds, four daughters of Groton Hall are in the five-horse filly trot, including preliminary winner Armatrading and Janey Eyre. Groton Hall's lone representative in the race for male trotters is Cinnabar Hall, likely the odds-on favorite after capturing both preliminaries.

Bestbestraight, a son of Third Straight, bested his rivals in both preliminaries for freshman male pacers, the latter score a career-best 1:54.2. Dave Palone, the sport's all-time winningest driver, will be in the sulky from post 3.

Cielle, also a daughter of Third Straight, will start from post 1 in the six-horse KYSS final for 2-year-old filly pacers and has six wins and two seconds in eight career starts, with her victories including a sweep of the KYSS preliminaries.

Post time for Sunday's Kentucky Sires Stakes Championship night is 7 p.m. There is a guaranteed Pick-4 pool of $10,000 offered on races 6-9. Concession-stand specials Sunday include $1 hot dogs, soft drinks and beer. The clubhouse is also open for fine dining, with reservations made by calling (859) 233-0814.

From the Red Mile press box

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