The feature race of the evening Saturday at Georgian Downs saw Swan In A Million and trainer/driver Dustin Jones get great cover and come home strong to win the $100,000 Honourable Earl Rowe Memorial Trot in 1:52.4. The time of the race set a Canadian season's record for trotters over a five-eighth-mile track.
Swan In A Million got away fourth at the pylons through a :27.4 opening quarter and flushed out cover in the form of pocket-sitting Natural Herbie (Verlin Yoder) approaching the half, which was clocked in :57.1. In the stretch, he rallied by race favorite Natural Herbie and tempo-setter R Raised Emotions (Mario Baillargeon), who fronted the field past three-quarters in 1:24.2, and held off the quick-closing Intimidate (Rick Zeron) for the half-length victory. Charmed Life (Robert Shepherd) finished three-quarters of a length behind off a three-hole trip.
There were five $18,000 Ontario Sires Stakes Grassroots events for two-year-old pacing fillies on Saturday night and the last split was the quickest as Southwind Luna toured the five-eighths mile oval in 1:54.
With driver Billy Davis Jr. calling the shots, Southwind Luna was in the lead through panels of :27.2, :56.3, and 1:24.3. Faithful Friend (Rick Zeron) took a shot out of the pocket in the final quarter, but Southwind Luna held sway to prevail by half a length. Wicked Speed (Scott Young) finished third.
Otis Hall trains Southwind Luna, a Sportswriter filly, for owner Nasussito Racing Inc. of Ayr, Ontario. Southwind Farms bred Southwind Luna, who has won twice from five starts and has earned $23,540. Southwind Luna, the first foal out of Lil Presto Hanover, a The Panderosa half-sister to $2.6 million earner McArdle, sold for $20,000 at last year’s Standardbred Horse Sale.
Drivers Rick Zeron and Trevor Henry split up the other four Grassroots sections, with each of them winning two. Zeron scored with Mister Big filly Show Some Leg in 1:54.4 for trainer Richard “Nifty” Norman and Shadow Play daughter Chase The Shadows in 1:54.2 for trainer Dave Menary. Henry’s victories came courtesy of Vic Puddy trainee Twin B Honour (1:55) and Richard Moreau pupil Ms Mac N Cheese (1:54.2).
The feature race of the evening saw Swan In A Million and trainer/driver Dustin Jones get great cover and come home strong to win the $100,000 Honourable Earl Rowe Memorial Trot in 1:52.4. The time of the race set a Canadian season's record for trotters over a five-eighth-mile track.
The next Grassroots test for rookie pacing fillies comes on September 2 at Flamboro Downs.
From the Ontario Sire Stakes