Day At The Track

Scarborough track record falls to Starz N Heaven

12:30 PM 01 Jul 2018 NZST
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Starznheaven, harness racing
Starznheaven and driver Heath Campbell set track record at Scarboough Downs
Michael Newman photo

Scarborough, Maine - June 30, 2018 ... The Mid-Summer Classic Series made a triumphant return to Scarborough Downs on Saturday as a dazzling field of six invitational class pacers answered the call to post for an event that had been absent from the racing calendar since 2012.

None shone brighter than StarzNHeaven though, whose game rally bid resulted in a divisional track record timing of 1:53.1, as he laid claim to the title of fastest aged stallion winner in the 68 year history of the seaside oval.

The effort supplanted the oldest pacing record on the books, an honor held by Prince Ebony and driver Ron Pierce since they won the 1990 edition of Scarborough's iconic Presidents Pace. The former record was equaled in 2009 by On A Tear and driver Shawn Gray.

As the race unfolded, Hickory Icon and driver David Ingraham set blazing early fractions leading the field past the first three poles through torrid clockings of 27.4, 55.4 and 1:24 flat.

JJs Jet (D. Campbell) took dead aim on the pacesetter just past the half, pulling to lead the overland charge and providing perfect cover to his brother Heath Campbell who was piloting the heavily favored StarzNHeaven. The perfect cover nearly turned into a nightmare scenario though as JJs Jet rolled off-stride just past the ¾-mile marker, scattering the trailers, including StarzNHeaven who appeared to lose most of his forward momentum.

Class showed through though as Heath Campbell and his charge quickly regained their composure, made up all that lost ground in a matter of seconds, and stoically engaged Hickory Icon at the top of the stretch.

The six-year-old son of Rock N Roll Heaven-Dancinwiththestarz coasted through a hand-driven tour of the lane to post the ¾-length margin over Hickory Icon, while Kenrick N (R. Cushing) rallied for the show.

Owned in partnership by Burke Racing Stable of Fredericktown, PA and Donald Emond of Taunton, MA, StarzNHeaven scored his fifth consecutive win during what turned into a triumphant homecoming for trainer Jim Nickerson, a state of Maine native who now plies his trade at Saratoga Raceway.

The 2nd elimination leg of the Mid-Summer Classic Series will be held on July 7 with the $25,000 final scheduled for Saturday July 14th.

Scarborough Downs will proudly feature live harness racing on Thursday and Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) with the popular Sunday matinees getting underway at 1:30 p.m.

For more information, visit www.ScarboroughDowns.com or visit our Facebook page.

by Michael Sweeney, for Scarborough Downs

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