Fresh off a convincing win in the biggest harness racing event of the year for Illinois conceived and foaled trotting colts, Lincoln Land Stake winner Vaporstar romped to his second straight triumph destroying eight other diagonally gaited freshmen by 8-1/2 lengths in Wednesday's $48,700 Cardinal Stake at Balmoral Park.
Given a confident steer by driver Dave Magee the son of-Starlicious headed right to the front from post position two and was comfortably in front as showed the way through opening splits of 30.3 & 1:01.0.
“He was really good out there tonight and he was trotting along so comfortably that it was just like taking a Sunday drive,” joked Magee. “I was a little concerned since he had been off for three weeks but Mike (Brink) assured me that he was fit and ready to go before we went out there.”
Heading around the far turn the Brink trainee finally started to feel some pressure as a first over Tuff Guy JJ (Eric Carlson) came calling as the field raced by the three-quarter-mile mark in 1:31.0.
“I heard that horse coming up on the outside but he wasn’t really any danger to us because my horse had already found his best stride and I hadn’t even asked him for anything yet,” said Magee.
Quickly dispatching of that challenge Vaporstar left the rest of the field in his wake as he continued to widen his margin all the way to the wire notching his second win of the season in 2:00.4. Tuff Guy JJ held on for second while Star On Ice (John De Long) finished third.
After the victory Magee continued to sing the praises of Vaporstar who now boasts a record of 2-1-4 in 8 starts with earnings of almost $89,000 for the partnership of Fox Valley Standardbreds and Harold & Joshua Carter.
“Mike’s done a great job bringing him around and taking his time with him,” said Magee. “He’s a big colt who really needed a little bit of teaching and patience early in his career and now that’s paying off in a big way. He’s really dominated his competition in these last two wins and he really seems to enjoy that.”
Sent off as the 3-5 favorite Vaporstar returned $3.20, $2.80 & $2.60.