Day At The Track

Leading trainer/driver awards at Grand River

01:36 PM 25 Sep 2018 NZST
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Harness racing Patrick Shepherd, harness racing
Colin Kelly (right) receives his Top Driver Award from Jamie Martin, Grand River Raceway’s Director Of Operations
NCJ Photo
Patrick Shepherd won his first training title at Grand River Raceway
NCJ Photo

ELORA, ON - Harness racing driver Colin Kelly and trainer Patrick Shepherd were recognized as the top performers of 2018 at Grand River Raceway on Monday night.

Both Kelly and Shepherd are celebrating their first titles at the Elora, ON track.

Kelly, 25, is enjoying a career-best season. In 2018, he has driven horses to purse earnings of $1.2 million and notched 182 wins, which lists him 7th in the nation. He's currently ranked in the season's top five at four other Ontario tracks. At Grand River Raceway specifically, he has 54 wins from 250 starts and $286,581 in purses. He is a career winner of 477 races and $2.1 million.

Patrick Shepherd sent forward 21 winners from 99 starts at Grand River Raceway this season for earnings of $96,446. This year is a career best for Shepherd, ranking second for wins (149) and fifth for UTR (.336) in the Canadian standings. He's also currently the season leader at Flamboro Downs and was second in the trainer standings at Georgian Downs.

Grand River Raceway hosted three Ontario Sires Stakes divisions of two-year-old trotting colts on Monday night, where a new record-setter emerged in race five. Sent off at 5-1, Forbidden Trade powered home to win by a neck over race favourite Dream Nation in 1:56.4. The mark bests the former track record of 1:58.1 and the all-time Canadian record (also an Ontario Sires Stakes record) of 1:57.4 set in 2010 by Daylon Magician at Flamboro Downs.

Forbidden Trade is a two-year-old son of Kadabra out of millionaire champion Pure Ivory. He was a $110,000 yearling purchase for Determination of Montreal, QC and has now earned $115,000 with five wins from seven starts. He is trained by Luc Blais.

Grand River Raceway's 2018 live harness racing season concludes on Wednesday when the track hosts the National Driving Championship. Post time is 6:30 p.m.

by Kelly Spencer, for Grand River Raceway

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