Day At The Track

Ontario sired quartet aim for Metro glory

06:09 AM 05 Sep 2015 NZST
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Voracity has shown versatility that has impressed his conditioner
Voracity has shown versatility that has impressed his conditioner
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CAMPBELLVILLE, September 4 - The Metro Pace has consistently been the biggest race for harness racing two-year-old pacers in the sport.

Each Labour Day weekend, the top two-year-old pacers from different states and provinces converge on Mohawk Racetrack for the richest race for freshmen. Over the years, the Metro Pace champion has quickly stamped himself as the top rookie pacer.

This year, the Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) has a big chance to be home of the top rookie pacer in harness racing. A group of four OSS competitors will compete in the ten-horse $685,000 Metro Pace Saturday night.

Voracity and Betting Line have both won multiple OSS Gold events this season and last Saturday both proved to be Grand Circuit contenders with victories in their respective Metro eliminations.

A son of Sportswriter, Voracity won divisions of the first two Gold events, before finishing second by a nose at Rideau. The Tony Alagna trainee rebounded with a victory in the Nassagaweya heading into his Metro elimination.

Through the first five starts of his career, Voracity has shown versatility that has impressed his conditioner.

"I think that's the true test of any great horse is that they have versatility where they can leave off the switch and they can come right back off the next week," said Alagna, following Voracity's Metro elimination. "These horses have to be versatile now a days because it's a speed game and they have to be able to start and stop at a seconds notice."

Voracity is out of the second-crop of Sportswriter, who cleaned up last season in the OSS and appears to be on pace for another solid season thanks in large part to the Alagna trainee.

Voracity will be looking for his fifth win from six starts Saturday and he enters the Metro the highest earning two-year-old pacing colt in the sport with over $170,000 banked.

Casie Coleman trainee Betting Line also has two victories this season in Gold events. The son of Bettor's Delight has four victories from six starts and will be meeting Voracity for the first time in the Metro Pace.

Coleman, who trained Sportswriter, is excited to see his offspring performing at the highest level, but she is confident in her son of Bettors Delight.

"(Voracity) is a Sportswriter colt and I was real excited to see a Sportswriter win a Metro elim and he was very impressive," said Coleman, last Saturday. "I've been real happy with everything (Betting Line's) done so far, he's a really talented colt."

Bettors Delight is currently in his first season in the OSS after many years as one of the top sires in New York. Betting Line's early-season success has made a major impact for Bettors Delight in the Ontario market.

Bettors Delight will also be represented by Jimmy Takter trainee Cruise Patrol in Saturday's rich contest.

Cruise Patrol has yet to win a race in seven starts, but Takter is no stranger to a Metro upset, having won the 2011 edition with Simply Business at 20/1.

Nvestment Bluechip, a son of Shadow Play, is the fourth and final OSS competitor in the field. The Dave Menary trainee won a division of the first Gold event this season and finished third by just half a length in his Metro elimination.

Nvestment Bluechip, who has a record of two wins from five starts, impressed his conditioner training down, convincing his connections to pay him up to the Metro and other Grand Circuit events.

"He was kind of my favourite colt all winter," said Menary. "His schedule he doesn't have to leave Canada, but it still gives him a little bit of opportunity to step up."

Although Nvestment Bluechip will face his toughest challenge this Saturday, Menary believes the tasks will be tough all season in the OSS.

"It is (a deep group). He's been lucky so far, but there are a lot of good colts and hopefully he can have a little more luck going to the end of the year."

Voracity and Betting Line have been installed as the second and third choice on the morning line for Saturday's final at 3/1 and 7/2, respectively.

Nvestment Bluechip and Cruise Patrol may be long shots on the morning line, but it was just a few years ago that Ontario sired colt Boomboom Ballykeel scored a 10/1 upset in the 2013 Metro.

The 2015 Metro Pace will go forward as the Seventh Race Saturday evening at approximately 9:17 p.m.

Here is the full field for the Metro Pace.

1. The Catamount Kid by Well Said, Jody Jamieson, Carl Jamieson, 10-1

2. Betting Line by Bettor's Delight, Steve Condren, Casie Coleman, 7-2

3. Voracity by Sportswriter, Sylvain Filion, Tony Alagna, 3-1

4. Control The Moment by Well Said, Randy Waples, Brad Maxwell, 9-5

5. Racing Hill by Roll With Joe, Doug McNair, Tony Alagna, 8-1

6. Nvestment Bluechip by Shadow Play, James MacDonald, Dave Menary, 15-1

7. Pretty Boy Hill by Somebeachsomewhere, Matt Kakaley, Ron Burke, 15-1

8. Ideal Rocky by Rocknroll Hanover, John Campbell, John Butenschoen, 12-1

9. Cruise Patrol by Bettor's Delight, Brett Miller, Jimmy Takter, 20-1

10. American Passport by American Ideal, Scott Zeron, Tony Alagna, 15-1

Mark McKelvie

 

 

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Mark McKelvie
WEG Communications - Standardbred
Work - (416) 675-7223) x4367
Cell - (905) 864-9110
@MohawkMarkM
 
 
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