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Champion New Zealand jockey James McDonald is not a name usually associated with harness racing but that will all change tonight at Alexandra Park when the Angus Hall debutante Angus Bolt steps onto the track for the first time. Offered at last years Australasian Classic yearling sale by Brent Mangos and long time stable patron Warren Oliver, Angus Bolt was retained by his vendors when he failed to make his reserve price. From the former smart two year old trotting filly Strapless, Angus Bolt was given a few runs at workouts earlier in the season for educational purposes and put aside. This time in he has impressed trackwatchers in the north with a string of impressive runs at trials and workouts and has won his last four in style. Brent has a good opinion of his young trotter. " He is a really nice sensible trotter and I think quite a bit of him." " We will give him a couple of runs now and then give him a brief letup" " I think after Christmas we will line him up against the better age group trotters and I think he will more than hold his own," Brent said. James McDonald entered into the horse's ownership a few months back. " James is good friends with my daughter Angela and mentioned to me a while ago that he would like a share in one. " I have always liked Angus Bolt so I sold him a piece of my half share and thats how he became involved," Brent said. With James McDonald one of the pin up jockeys of the thoroughbred racing scene worldwide , his involvement in Angus Bolt has the potential to generate a lot of positive publicity for the harness racing industry in New Zealand. Another horse Brent has high hopes for tonight is Vibhuti. " I have always had an opinion of this horse but he disappointed me at the end of his last campaign." " We gelded him two months ago and he has really turned the corner lately." "His work recently has been super and with a little bit of luck from the draw he is well up to winning tonight," Brent said.  Harnesslink Media

Redwood Day at Maryborough this Sunday is one of most keenly anticipated dates on the Australian harness racing calendar. Two trotting only meetings are being held on Friday and Sunday this week with the two Group 1 races on the Sunday being the highlights This year there is another strong contingent of Kiwi trotters involved but to say they have received the visitors draw is an understatement. There are three Kiwi trotters involved in the $50,500 Redwood Classic for two year olds but all of them have drawn in the carpark. The outstanding Muscles Yankee filly High Gait has drawn the best of the Kiwis at barrier 6 and she will probably move into barrier five if the emergency doesn't get a start. After her recent trial at Menangle where she broke 1:56 for the mile with ease, High Gait looks the one to beat post draw. The Paul Nairn trained Conon Bridge has copped the worst possible marble for a horse who can be a touch unruly, drawing one on the second line. Up till now the son of Raffaello Ambrosia has started from the unruly position in all his mobile starts and his draw on Sunday means the Nairn camp will be crossing their fingers through the first 100 metres. The third of the Kiwi runners in the two year old Redwood Classic is Missandei and the daughter of Angus Hall is right out in the carpark at five on the second line. Missandei won her only start since crossing the Tasman but the draw makes her task to beat High Gait again very difficult. The other Group 1 on Sunday is the $75,000 Victorian Derby and the outstanding New Zealand three year old Speeding Spur is another Kiwi to be handed a horror draw. Speeding Spur will start from six on the second line and will need all favours from out there to be a winning chance. Arya will start from barrier four so she instantly becomes a great each way chance while the top local Illawong Armstrong has also drawn the second line but his last win over Arya was outstanding and with any luck early he will be a big threat.. Harnesslink Media

After having his early season derailed by allergies, two-year-old trotting colt Willyorwonthe finally found his way to the Ontario Sires Stakes winner's circle at the harness racing meeting at Mohawk Racetrack on Tuesday evening. The colt and driver Mike Saftic of Campbellville, ON fired away from Post 8 in the last $18,000 Grassroots division and reeled off fractions of :28.2, :59 and 1:30.1 before fending off a late challenge from The Land Shark and sailing under the wire a three-quarter length winner in 1:58.4. Sass was well behind the leaders in third. It was Willyorwonthe's first win since he turned heads with a 1:56.3 triumph in a two-year-old conditioned event at Mohawk on July 2, and the effort caused owner-trainer Bill Megens of Puslinch, ON to breathe a small sigh of relief. "He raced very good the first start," said Megens of the colt's July 2 debut. "He had a few problems with food allergies so the vet, after the first race, suggested I treat him for the allergies and it kind of back-fired, he was allergic to the treatment." Willyorwonthe broke out in a rash, his throat was inflamed and he developed a cough in response to the allergy treatment. In his first two Ontario Sires Stakes appearances, at the Gold Series level on July 13 and 21, he finished seventh and fourth without the finishing kick he had shown Megens all winter. "He'd been good all along and I couldn't figure out what the heck went wrong with him," said Megens, who learned that 30 per cent of horses have an adverse reaction to the allergy treatment. "Hopefully we've got that under control now. He's not allergic to dust or nothing, it's just some foods." Following Willyorwonthe's reaction to the allergy treatment, Megens reverted to the simple diet he had been feeding the son of Angus Hall and Mikestory since he was a foal. "No more sweet feed or any of the mixed feeds." "He's allergic to corn and soy beans both, so it makes it hard to get a feed that don't contain them, so I put him on straight oats," said the horseman, who bred both Willyorwonthe and his dam, $246,254 winner Mikestory. "When I trained him down he was on straight oats and he always was good, and then I tried to get him a little better feed and it didn't work." If Willyorwonthe continues to regain his health Megens will send him to Georgian Downs for the fourth Grassroots event on August 4, and a positive result there may see the young trotter take another run at the Gold Series colts. "Hopefully he'll stay healthy for a while," said the horseman. "We'll see after the next race, if he races well next time we'll probably try him in the Gold again." Local trotter Holiday Bro also captured his first Ontario Sires Stakes trophy on Tuesday. The son of Holiday Road and Armbro Xanadu circled out wide in the final quarter and sprinted down the stretch to a two length victory over favourite United BI and Muscle Time in 2:00.3 in the second division. "They were all hanging in the last turn, so I whipped out like 10-wide and let him trot," quipped Phil Hudon, who piloted Holiday Bro to the win for owner-trainer Ivan Gallant of Rockwood, ON. "I helped Ivan train him down and he's coming along nicely," added the Guelph, ON resident. "He's getting better every start and he's a quick learner." In his Grassroots debut, at Clinton Raceway on July 19, Holiday Bro finished second, so Tuesday's victory bumped his point tally to 75 and put him in fifth spot in the standings with three regular season events left on the two-year-old trotting colt calendar. Milton, ON resident Randy Waples won two Grassroots events, with Thee Desperado and Frankly Speaking. Starting from Post 5 in the first division, Thee Desperado recovered quickly from an early break in stride and then reeled in the leaders through the stretch to post a victory in his first lifetime start. Waples and the Manofmanymissions son hit the wire one-half length ahead of favourite Recreate and Romeo, stopping the teletimer at 1:58.3. Waples engineered the win for trainer Brent Belore of Embro, ON and owners Karen and Daniel MacIntyre of London, ON, Joshua McKibbin of Tillsonburg, ON and Nancy Newport of Ingersoll, ON. Lightly rated Frankly Speaking also used a come-from-behind move to post his first victory in the fifth division. The Angus Hall son bested Asterix and Clone The Tone by three-quarters of a length in 1:59.2. Waples piloted the colt for trainer Mark Steacy of Lansdowne, ON and owners Frank Spagnolo of Potsdam, NY and Frank Schimizzi of Ottawa, ON. Georgies Pockets kept a neck in front of UF Musclemass Star to record his second straight Grassroots victory in the fourth split. The Muscle Mass son and driver Steve Condren hit the wire in 1:58.3. Cool Creek Victory rounded out the top three. Milton, ON resident Condren piloted the colt to his second win for trainer Melvin Turcotte of Coconut Creek, FL and owners M T Pockets Stables of Pompano Beach, FL. Georgies Pockets now shares top spot in the division standings with United BI. Windsun Missile captured the other Grassroots division with a 2:00 clocking for trainer-driver Per Henriksen . The duo bested JLs Bad Moon Risin and Welland Seelster. Henriksen trains the Kadabra colt for Steve Organ of Aurora, ON, Asa Farm of Norwood, ON and Darryl Drain of Tweed, ON. The two-year-old trotting colts make their fourth Grassroots start at Georgian Downs on August. 4, while their feminine peers arrive at Mohawk on Thursday evening for seven Grassroots divisions. The two-year-old trotting fillies are featured in Races 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 9, and 11 on the Thursday program, which gets under way at 7:25 pm. Ontario Horse Racing

Trois-Rivieres, Quebec - The Hippodrome 3R will host the final preliminary round of the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series for three-year-old trotters on Wednesday. After this fourth round of the series, the top eight point earners in each division (colt and filly) will return on Sunday, September 6 for their respective $65,000 finals. All eyes will be on Intouchable in the sixth race, second division of the series. Last week the royally bred son of Angus Hall saw his impressive three-race winning streak come to an end as he broke stride at the start of the race and finished a distant fifth place. "He hit his knee leaving out of the gate and went on a run," said harness racing driver Mario Charron about Intouchable. "I heard him hit his knee and knew we were in trouble. "It took a little bit to get him back on stride," Charron explained, "But I know he will be alright. His trainer, Maxime Velaye, will have him ready to go again on Wednesday. He will straighten out his shoeing so it does not happen again." In that race last week, Seeyou Men and driver Robert Shepherd led from start to finish and set a track record for three-year-old trotting geldings with a 1:59.3 triumph. "That colt went a tremendous mile," Charron said, "We will have to worry about him in the final next month. I just want to see my horse go a good mile on Wednesday." Intouchable starts from post six in the second division that also features National Trace (post 4), Double Chance (post 1) and SOS Revange (post 6). The fifth race, first division of the series, the filly D'Espoir, leads the field from post 1 for driver Pascal Berube. This daughter of Windsong Espoir was able to close with a burst of speed at the top of the stretch last week and post and easy victory on the off-track. She will face stiff competition from rivals SOS Harddrive (post 3), 2012 champion, Meganou (post 5) and Promesses Imperial (post 7). After this Sunday's live race card, the Hippodrome 3R will be taking a break from live harness racing for the Trois-Rivieres Auto Grand Prix. Racing will resume on Wednesday, August 12. The track will still be open for simulcasting and the casino. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club      

Six divisions of two-year-old trotting colts put on an exciting show during Ontario Sires Stakes Super Sunday at the harness racing meeting at Clinton Raceway. Gonna Fly trotted into the Clinton oval's history books with a 2:02.2 track record in the second $18,000 division, taking command in the backstretch and pulling away to a four and one-quarter length victory over Eyeseenow and Cooper. Arthur, ON resident Trevor Henry crafted the win for trainer Bob McIntosh of Windsor, ON. "He trained down no problems whatsoever. I don't think he hardly even made a break the whole time training down," said McIntosh of the homebred Gonna Fly. "He's super gaited and super good on the half-mile track, he can trot the turns faster than he can trot a straightaway. "I wish all the races were on a half," added the trainer with a chuckle. "He's a handy little cat on a half." McIntosh and Earl Hill Jr. of Ohsweken, ON share ownership of the Kadabra colt Gonna Fly, who peeled two-fifths of a second off the former track record, set by Oratorio in 2006. Local colt Warrawee Rob captured the third Grassroots division for trainer Heather Toll of Dungannon, ON and owners Janet and Murray Bradshaw's 574238 Ontario Inc. of Waterford. Starting from Post 2 the Angus Hall son and driver Scott Coulter roared out to a seven-length lead before the :29.4 quarter, reached the half in 1:01.3 and the three-quarters in 1:33.4 and dug in down the stretch to secure the three-quarter length victory in 2:04.2. "He gets a little bit aggressive, I guess you could say. He knows his job and it's his home track, so I figured he'd probably leave a little bit," said Toll. "At the three-quarters he kind of came back to Scott, because that's the way he usually does when we train him, and then when he sees the other one coming he digs back in." Toll and the Bradshaw's were joined in the winner's circle by a number of family and friends who all enjoyed Ontario Sires Stakes Super Sunday at Clinton, which featured giveaways, the "Guess with Jess" trivia contest and an opportunity to drive a racehorse. "The people from Seelster's all came down today because of Heineken (Seelster), and they came back to the barn, and they were really happy and just loved the environment in Clinton," said Toll, whose other colt, Heineken Seelster, finished fifth behind Gonna Fly. "It's friendly, it's an open atmosphere and everybody gets along. It's fun, the kids can come and swim in the pool because it's free, and it's a nice relaxing day for people to come and enjoy the business, which is great. "Everybody coming out today was a great thing," she continued. The other Grassroots divisions went to Ginger Road, Wildwild Men, The Land Shark and Muscle Time. Ginger Road kicked off the afternoon's festivities with a 2:04.2 victory for driver Lorne House of Ingersoll, ON trainer Fred Jamieson of Putnam, ON and his partners Renato Confortin of London, ON and Karl Empey of Mossley, ON. The Holiday Road gelding bested favourite Holiday Bro and Leroys Dream. Fan favourite Wildwild Men moved into a tie for top spot in the division point race with his 2:06.2 triumph over Terrain Seelster and Kronwall in the fourth division. Robert Shepherd of Cambridge, ON engineered the 10 and one-half length win for trainer Isabelle Darveau of Cambridge, ON and owners Catheline Pelletier of Mirabel, QC and Chantal Gravel of St.-Cyrille-de-Wendover, QC. Second in the Grassroots season opener, the Muscle Mass son now boasts a point tally of 75. Driver Alfie Carroll of Iona Station, ON piloted The Land Shark to a 2:05.2 win in the fifth division for trainer Richard Moreau of Puslinch, ON and his partner 9099 3833 Quebec Inc. of Sorel-Tracy, QC. The Manofmanymissions colt reeled in pacesetter United BI and pocket sitter Bipartisan Hanover in the stretch to earn the quarter length victory, his first. Petrolia, ON resident Darryl Laver steered Muscle Time to a gritty neck victory in the final division, hitting the wire in 2:02.4, a neck in front of JLs Bad Moon Risin and Bow Ties N Bourbon. Laver bred, owns and trains Muscle Time, who is a Muscle Mass son out of his $324,264 winning race mare Spare Time Rozie. The two-year-old trotting colts make their third Grassroots appearance at Mohawk Racetrack on July 28. Ontario Sires Stakes action returns to Clinton Raceway on Sunday, Aug. 9 with Grassroots action for the two-year-old pacing fillies. Ontario Horse Racing

Local colt Tswalu delivered the perfect opener for the 43rd Anniversary celebrations at the harness racing meeting at Kawartha Downs on Saturday, capturing his very first Ontario Sires Stakes victory at his hometown oval. "It's always nice to win on the home turf," said Peterborough resident Dagfin Henriksen, who piloted the gelding to the win for his partners Kevin Isaac of Bridgenorth and Samuel Mulholland of Picton. "They were a bunch of happy owners." Starting from Post 5, Henriksen sent Tswalu directly to the front and controlled the tempo through fractions of :28.1, :58.4 and 1:26.4 before sailing down the stretch to a one and one-quarter length win in 1:56.3. Fan favourite Parkhill Lancelot, trained by Peterborough native John Bax, finished second and P L Intimidator was third. The win came on the heels of a disappointing performance for Tswalu in the July 3 Grassroots event Mohawk Racetrack where he made a break and finished ninth, so trainer-driver Henriksen was pleased the gelding was finally able to demonstrate his ability. "He didn't get to show what he was last time because he just wanted to go forward when he got a horse on the outside, and I had a horse in front of me," explained Henriksen. "You know it's kind of hard for handicappers to see that because they don't know what happened." "So I knew he was a nice horse, but I haven't had much luck with him yet." The win was not just Tswalu's first in Grassroots action, it was his first ever victory in 19 starts. In two other Grassroots starts this season the Angus Hall son finished sixth (June 4) and second (June 24). Henriksen is hoping Saturday's victory is a sign of better things to come for the trotter. "He's just starting to put it together and I think he'll be a really nice aged horse too," noted the horseman. The second $18,000 Grassroots division was captured by driver Delcrest Massy, who went gate-to-wire in 1:56.4 for driver Alfie Carroll. Jayport On Th Edge and J N Ryder finished five and one half lengths back in second and third. Victor Puddy of Mountain, ON conditions Delcrest Massy for owner Keith Cassell of Smiths Falls, ON. Through four Grassroots starts the Muscle Mass son has tallied two wins, one third and one fifth for 117 points and second spot in the division standings. "He's a real nice horse." He's good mannered, he don't pull, he does everything you want him to do," said driver Carroll of Delcrest Massy. "You can race him either way, but he looked like he'd been racing good near the front, so that's where I aimed for and we were lucky enough to get it." The win with Delcrest Massy was the first of three Grassroots wins and two overnight victories on the program for Carroll, who scored his first Ontario Sires Stakes hat trick on July 7 at Georgian Downs with a trio of two-year-old trotting fillies. "I haven't driven in a lot of Ontario Sires Stakes," noted the 30-year-old reinsman. "This is my first year to really be driving a lot of them, and most of them have so far been trotters." The Iona Station, ON resident scored his next two victories with Bob McIntosh trainees A Little More Love and Kadabrasnewrecruit, and controlled the fractions with both colts. A Little More Love roared out to a three length margin from Post 2 in the fourth division and carried on to a one and three-quarter length victory in 1:56.3. Favourite Buzz and Century Behemoth rounded out the top three. Windsor, ON resident McIntosh shares ownership of A Little More Love with Dave Boyle of Bowmanville, ON. The number two ranked colt in the Gold Series last season, the Kadabra colt had not visited the winner's circle in five sophomore starts prior to Saturday evening's effort. Favourite Kadabrasnewrecruit rang up fractions of :27.4 and :57.3, then was briefly headed by Stormont Wizard heading by the 1:26 three-quarters, but came back on to record a one-half length victory in 1:56.3. Stormont Wizard settled for second, with Lets Be Honest a length back in third. The win was the third in Grassroots competition for Kadabrasnewrecruit, who sits atop the division standings with 162 points. Hall of Fame horseman McIntosh owns the son of Kadabra, who has been no worse than third in six starts this season. "They said he was the best of the two, so after the first one I thought we had a pretty good chance with him," said Carroll. "He dug deep and showed he's got a lot of heart to come back on like that." The other Grassroots trophy went home with A Rod Hall, who bested Rebel Rebel and Pridecrest in 1:58. It was the first ever win for the Deweycheatumnhowe gelding, who was making just his fifth lifetime start. Thornton, ON resident Steve Byron crafted the win for trainer Dustin Jones of Waterdown, ON and owner Willow Pond LLC of Hewlett, NY. The three-year-old trotting colts make their fifth Grassroots start at Hiawatha Horse Park on August 22. In addition to the three-year-old trotting colt Grassroots event, the large Kawartha Downs crowd celebrated the anniversary with cupcakes, prize draws and giveaways, and a variety of special on-track moments, including the presentation of the second Grassroots trophy by Mary Speck, who was celebrating her 90th birthday with her family. Racing continues at Kawartha Downs next Saturday at 7 pm. Ontario Horse Racing

Trois-Rivieres, Quebec - Over the past few weeks the three-year-old trotter, Intouchable, has crushed his opposition in the first two preliminary rounds of the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series at the Hippodrome 3R, and looks to do it again on Wednesday. Bred and owned to be a winner by Ecurie Provoquante of Mirabel, QC, Intouchable did not live up to expectations as a two-year-old, going winless in seven starts. A full brother to the top trotter, Maximuscle (Angus Hall - Iceberg Angus), who won the Quebec-Bred Series at ages 2, 3 and 4, Intouchable is starting to show his good breeding and he should. He has ten brothers and sisters that were all race horses including Puissaint ($341,000) and Victoire ($267,000). Unbeaten in three starts this year, the fastest an eye-opening 1:58.3 debut record at Rideau Carlton, Intouchable is very different from Maximuscle says driver Mario Charron. "He (Intouchable) is a very different horse than Maximuscle," Charron explained. "Intouchable is much better leaving from the gate than Maximuscle is or was. Maximuscle was a tough race horse who can out muscle other horses while Intouchable is all about speed. "I know we have not seen the best of Intouchable so far," Charron said. "He is still somewhat green. I made him go in the pocket early last week so he knows he does not have to go to the lead every start." Intouchable starts from post four on Wednesday against just five rivals. He is putting his three-race unbeaten streak against possible contenders Seeyou Men (post 3) and Promesses Imperial (post five). "There is no reason right now in this series for him to have to go at his full speed," Charron said. "He can easily handle the group he is racing against, no problem. Once we are done with the preliminary rounds in this series there is some time before the $65,000 final on September 6 to maybe go to Mohawk. Then we may see how good he really is. "I have no idea how fast he could go on a big track," Mario said. "I think he has the speed to leave, get cover and then close with great ability. I think down the road he will break his brother Maximuscle's record of 1:54.2. That is how good I think he is going to be." I don't know what his trainer Maxime Velaye did to wake this colt up, but it has worked," Charron said. "Right now he is a special horse everyone should pay attention to. He has the ability to do very well in the coming future." The fillies do battle in the seventh race with a full field of ten starters. Included in the field are both return winners from last week, SOS Harddrive and National Trace. SOS Harddrive is part of any entry with SOS Revange. SOS Harddrive starts from post one for driver/trainer Eric Gnoccini and last week this daughter of Taurus Dream posted an impressive lifetime mark of 2:01.4 while being parked out first-over for most of the race. National Trace is part of any entry with stablemate D'Espoir (post 6), both trained by Dany Fontaine. National Trace starts from post five for driver Stephane Brosseau and last week she was able to wire the field in a seven and three-quarter length romp in 2:03.2. Another contender is Meganou and driver Jocelyn Gendron from post eight. This filly by Kadabra was the Quebec-Bred champion last year and has the speed to overcome her outside post. Post time Wednesday is 7:00 pm. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club  

Trois-Rivieres, Quebec - Once again the three-year-old trotter Intouchable was untouchable as he remained undefeated in 2015 with his third straight win at the Hippodrome 3R Wednesday. Competing in the second round of the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series, the gelded son of Angus Hall and driver Mario Charron held the field at bay once again, coasting to an easy victory by three and one-quarter lengths in 2:00. Leaving from post five at the start, Intouchable bided his time working his way to the lead over a stubborn Second Revenge M A (Gaetan Lamy) by the opening quarter mile in :29.1. Once in command, Intouchable trotted with ease to the half mile in :59.1. Then in the backstretch Double Chance and driver Sylvain Lacaille made a first-over move, blowing by Second Revenge M A and getting in right behind Intouchable as they raced past the three-quarters in 1:30. It was then that Mario Charron lifted the lines and Intouchable responded by pulling away from the field in the stretch. Double Chance held for second place with SOS Revange (Francine Morrissette) closing for third place. Trained by Maxime Velaye for owner/breeder Ecurie Provouante of Mirabel, QC, Intouchable, who is a full brother to the Quebec champion, Maximuscle, paid just $2.20 to win as the overwhelming 1/9 favorite. SOS Harddrive put in the toughest mile of her career in the first race, first division of the Quebec-Bred Series and came away with not only a lifetime record of 2:01.4, but also upset the field at 16-1 odds, paying $35.60 to win. Trained and driven to victory by Eric Gnocchini, SOS Harddrive had to win the hard way, racing first-over from before the half mile pole. The race began with Notrouble Decharfa (Stephane Brosseau) shooting to the early lead and they were passed by Meganou (Gaetan Lamy) by the opening quarter mile in :30.1. Already on the move on the outside before the half mile in 1:01 was SOS Harddrive and Gnochini and they continued to work their way up into contention by the three-quarter mile marker in 1:32.1. They as they started down the stretch, Gnocchini and SOS Harddrive had collared Meganou and after battling down the stretch, won by one length with Meganou second and a late closing Champagne Panic (Denis Filion) third. It was not only a lifetime mark for SOS Harddrive but the second lifetime win for the daughter of Taurus Dream and the time of 2:01.4 lowered her lifetime mark by four seconds. SOS Harddrive is owned by Monalisa Pagliericci of Standbridge Station, QC. Live racing resumes at the Hippodrome 3R on Sunday, post time 1:30 pm with the second round of the $250,000 Quebec-Bred Series for three-year-old pacers. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club

Trois-Rivieres, Quebec - The second round of preliminary competition in the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series for three-year-old harness racing trotters takes place Wednesday at the Hippodrome 3R and the question on everyone's mind is if Intouchable is untouchable! Intouchable, unbeaten in two starts this year after going 0 for 7 as a two-year-old, puts his 2015 unbeaten streak on the line in the third race, one of two divisions of the Quebec-Bred Series. The gelded son of Angus Hall - Iceberg Angus, making him a full brother to three-time Quebec-Bred Series Champion, Maximuscle, is making up for his dismal two-year-old season. In his first start this year, Intouchable wowed racing fans by winning at Rideau Carlton in an impressive clocking of 1:58.3. He then followed up that victory by coming to the Hippodrome 3R for the opening round of the Quebec-Bred Series and wiring the field in 2:02.2 on an "off-track". Now he faces a pretty easy field on Wednesday, starting from post five for driver Mario Charron. There is no question that the overwhelming race favorite was bred to be a winner and is now showing it on the racetrack. His main competition will come from Double Chance (post 3) and Gros Bill (post six). The first race, first division of the Quebec-Bred Series is headlined by Meganou from post three for driver Gaetan Lamy. This daughter of Kadabra won $47,000 last year, mainly in the Quebec-Bred Series for trainer Daniel Martin, but has been off to a rough start in 2015 with no wins in her first four starts, all at Mohawk Raceway. Meganou may have turned the tide coming back to the Hippodrome 3R as she won her qualifying race in 2:02.4 on a wet track. But it will not be a walk in the park for Meganou as she faces stiff competition from Promesses Imperial (post 7), who has won three of his first four starts this year, Notrouble Dechafra (post 5) and Champagne Panic (post 6). First race post time is 7:00 pm Wednesday. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club  

Cufflink Hanover enjoyed a dream career debut Monday at the harness racing meeting at The Meadows. Not only did he capture a division of a $100,000 Pennsylvania Stallion Series event, but he also trotted to a stake record 1:57. The stake for 2-year-old colts and geldings was contested over five divisions, with TNT Rusty, Soda Pump, Love To Glide and Will Self taking the other splits. Cufflink Hanover had a pair of qualifiers to prepare for his debut, but in neither was he asked to take air. Winning driver David Miller, who co-owns the Nifty Norman trainee with Enzed Racing Stable, required just that of him, sending him first over from third down the backside. The youngster responded beautifully, wearing down Mr Right and defeating him by 1-1/4 lengths. Meadowbranch Memo finished third. "He felt real good or I wouldn't have moved him," Miller said of the $30,000 yearling acquisition, an Andover Hall-CR Savoire Faire gelding." "But he felt like he was ready to go." "He tried to come out of a hole on his own down the backstretch." The second time he did it, I just pulled his earplugs." "We kept him eligible to a couple nice races next year, but this year he'll stay in Pennsylvania." The time eclipsed the old mark of 1:57.2 established by Pekoe Fashion in 2011. Speaking of moving first over to win at first asking, TNT Rusty duplicated that feat when he erased an 8-1/2-length deficit to down the rallying Petrossian AS by a neck for Dave Palone in 1:58.1. Early leader Fiji saved show. It was one of three wins on the 15-race card for Palone. "I was looking to go out of there with him, but there were a couple guys inside me leaving," Palone said. "I just wanted to give him a good experience most of all. It couldn't have worked out any better." "He fired home pretty good. He's a real likeable colt." George Ducharme conditions the Explosive Matter-Rusty's Twizzted T gelding and owns with Paul Fontaine and Alfred Ross. Soda Pump didn't have to tough out an uncovered move, as he dominated on the front, triumphing convincingly in 1:57.4 for Aaron Merriman and lessee/trainer Clifton Green. Muscle City was second, 5-1/4 lengths back, with Simplyamonster AS third. "He's been a natural from Day 1," said Green of the son of Cantab Hall-Alot Of Pump. "He's like a spoiled brat kid -- just plays all the time." "He probably needs to be castrated, but we'll decide that later." "I don't know where his end is. He doesn't pay attention, but he keeps going. We'll see how far he goes." In the $18,000 Winners Over $10,000 Life/Preferred Handicap Trot, Tamarind made it four straight with a persuasive victory in 1:52.2, matching Sharp Edge's track record for older horses. The first-over Major Athens was second, 1-3/4 lengths in arrears, while Tall Cotton completed the ticket. Merriman piloted the 7-year-old son of Angus Hall-Spicegirl Kosmos, who now boasts $674,044 in lifetime earnings, for owner/trainer Bill Bercury. Tuesday's program at The Meadows features six divisions of the Hickory Pride, a $216,980 PA Sires Stake for freshman colt and gelding trotters. First post is 12:55 PM: Evan Pattak The Meadows Racetrack & Casino

Trainer Anthony De Francesco III had four training wins on the Wednesday afternoon (July 1) card at the harness racing meeting at Harrah's Philadelphia. The first of which came when Joseph Laino's ER Room (Yannick Gingras) survived a :26.2 opening quarter to get the job done. The 6-year-old son of Cambest won for the thirteenth time in his career. It was his third win of the season, setting a lifetime's best 1:52 in the process. He paid $4.20. Six races later, Louis A. and Louis M. Di Tullio's Red Carpet Dude (Dave Miller) scored the upset victory ($57.20) The six-year-old son of Camluck tracked live cover up the backstretch, establishing prime position for his final push, which ended in a two length victory, and a 1:53.1 clocking. It was his first win for De Francesco III, who is also part owner. Once again the Di Tullio's reached the winner's circle, this time with six-year-old gelded pacer Special Blend (Eric Abbatiello). The son of The Panderosa drafted in the pocket spot after leading the first quarter-mile. He was able to punch through the passing lane for his eleventh career victory out of ninety-nine career starts. It was his first win of the season, paying $33.00 to win. Just two races later, in the live finale, Dante Scattolini Sr.'s Sonny McDreamee overcame post eight to score the upset win. The ten-year-old trotting gelding by Angus Hall went right to the front and made every call a winning one, stopping the timer in 1:57.4. It was his twenty-second win out of one hundred and sixty lifetime starts, and his first win in the De Francesco barn. He paid $21.40 to win. There was no winner in the pick four. The carryover for Thursday afternoon is $1,935.43. Post time is 12:40 PM, with the pick four getting underway in race seven. Mike Bozich

Trois-Rivieres, Quebec – Harness racing driver Denis St Pierre wasted no time in scoring his 4,000th career victory at the Hippodrome 3R Wednesday evening. He started off the night needed just two wins so he won both ends of the daily double to reach the milestone victory. “I really wanted to achieve this goal tonight,” Denis St Pierre said. “Because my sister Caroline is here visiting me from New Zealand and it has made for a very special achievement to share with her. I wanted her to go back home with something special.” St Pierre, 54, hails from Montreal. He has been driving professionally since 1981. His milestone victory came in the second race with D G’s Laurie ($4.50) as they led from start to finish, winning by three-quarters of a length over Thebestofme (Mario Charron) in 1:58.1 over a sloppy, rain soaked track with a three second variant. “After I won the first race I knew I had to do it in the second,” St Pierre said. “These were my two best drives of the night. You can say I was very determined to win the second race. The first race was very easy. “I am so happy to have achieved this special mark here in Quebec and at the Hippodrome 3R,” St Pierre said. “I wanted to do it here in front of my family and friends. This is home to me.” Win number 3,999 for Denis St Pierre came in the first race, an opening round division of the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series for three-year-old trotting colts and fillies. Driving National Trace, St. Pierre sent the daughter of Taurus Dream right to the lead from post five and never looked back. They held the field at bay until after the three-quarters, opening up by three lengths by the top of the stretch and then pulling away for a seven and one-quarter length romp in 2:03.2. The pocket-sitting SOS hardrive (Francis Morressette) was second with Double Chance (Sylvain LaCaille) third. It was the first win in six starts this year for National Trace, who paid $4.50 to win. She is trained by Dany Fontaine and is owned and was bred by Ecurie Gaeton Bono, Inc. of Montreal, QC. In the third race second division of the Quebec-Bred Series it was Intouchable and driver Mario Charron’s turn to lead from start to finish. Intouchable is a full brother to Quebec-Bred champion, Maximuscle, and despite being winless as a two-year-old, Intouchable is making up for lost time at age three, wiring the field in 2:02.2. Overtaking the lead from Notrouble Dechafra (Stephane Brosseau) before the opening quarter mile, Intouchable was challenged in the backstretch by a determined Seeyou Men and driver Robert Shepherd. But they could not collar the race leader, but did make Intouchable kick in another gear as he came home in :29.1 over the sloppy track to win by one and three-quarter lengths. Seeyou Men was second with Notrouble Dechafra third. Unbeaten in two starts this year, Intouchable is trained by Maxme Velaye for owner/breeder Ecurie Provoquante of Mirabel, QC. He paid $3.30 to win. Driver Denis St Pierre was not finished after the first two races. He also won the sixth race with Imjustalittleguy ($4.10) and the tenth race with Our Star ($3.00) in 2:03.1 for his fifth driving quadruple this season. Live racing resumes Sunday at the Hippodrome 3R. First race post time is 1:30 pm and featured will be the $200,000 opening round of the Quebec-Bred Series for three-year-old pacing colts and fillies. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club

Doug McIntosh missed out on a piece of the eight-foot long cake, but the Wheatley resident still left the harness racing meeting at Dresden Raceway on Canada Day in a celebratory mood after Cincinnati Miss delivered an impressive victory in her $18,000 Grassroots division. "It's now one race at a time, but she kind of made us believers, and I'm very, very happy," said McIntosh. "It worked out great." Sent off as the narrow favourites over Allies Gift and Luc Ouellette, Cincinnati Miss and driver Trevor Henry sprinted away from Post 4 and took early control of the race. As the pair rolled through fractions of :29, :57.3 and 1:28 with Allies Gift tucked in behind them, McIntosh worried the tempo might be too quick, but Cincinnati Miss found another gear in the stretch and pulled away to a two and one-quarter length victory in 1:58.2. "I was a little concerned that the fractions were pretty heavy," admitted McIntosh, who shares ownership of Cincinnati Miss with Ivey Pharm Stable of Cincinnati, Ohio. "But you know what, she made us proud in the stretch, she just dug in and got the job done, and within two-fifths (of a second) of the track record." The win improved the Kadabra daughter's sophomore record to two wins, two seconds and one third in five starts and boosted her season earnings to $25,160. The consistent young trotter will make her next start in the July 14 Grassroots event at Georgian Downs. "I can't say enough for Bob's team, they've done a great job," said McIntosh, who retired from training horses in the spring and handed care of Cincinnati Miss off to his brother Bob McIntosh of Windsor, ON. "Daryl (Wayne) that looks after her is a very, very efficient groom, she's had a lot of experience and she knows what to do. She's very, very proud." McIntosh was also pleased to see the enthusiastic crowd gathered at Dresden Raceway to celebrate Canada Day and the Grassroots trotting fillies. In addition to Cincinnati Miss, the fans greeted six other fillies as they returned triumphant to the Dresden winner's circle. The aptly named Summers Jewel kicked things off with a 1:59.2 score in the first Grassroots division, circling out three-wide to claim a two length victory over Pointe Of Inquiry and JLs Too Hot Taj. Mario Baillargeon piloted the fan favourite to her first win of the season for his brother, trainer Benoit Baillargeon of Rockwood, ON, who also owns the daughter of Angus Hall. In the second division Hope Rises tracked down pacesetter Misslarissa heading for the three-quarters and accelerated away to a three and one-half length victory in 2:01. Fan favourite Lady Caterina settled for second, with Misslarissa hanging on for third. Sylvain Filion drove the Windsong Espoir daughter to her first win of the season for trainer Kelly Goodwin and owner-breeders Deborah Spike-Pierce of Lexington, KY and Madelon Spike of Jerome, MI. Local filly Judy The Beauty, owned by Randy Zhok of Dover Centre, had fans on their feet in the stretch of the third division, but finished one-quarter length behind winner Flexceptional in the 2:01 mile. Dave Tyrrell trains Flexceptional for Michael Casalino Jr. of Freehold, NJ and Anthony MacDonald piloted the Federal Flex daughter to the win. Tymal Fireitup rounded out the top three. La Bella Rosa's late sprint in the fourth division paid dividends, as she hit the wire one-quarter length ahead of Giona and fan favourite Kaddy. The Holiday Road filly gave driver Sylvain Filion his second win of the afternoon. Filion engineered the 1:59.4 win for trainer Reaume Bouvier and owners Bella Fortuna Stable of Laval, QC and Patricia McGuirl of Guelph, ON. Kadabra daughter Wing Flash displayed an impressive turn of foot in the fifth division, sailing along on the front end to a seven and one-half length victory in 1:58.2. Sheguindah and Stay In Touch completed the top three. Trainer-driver Wayne Henry of Arthur, ON shares ownership of Wing Flash with Daylon Farms of Komoka, ON. The final Grassroots division saw Trevor Henry make his second appearance in the Dresden winner's circle, guiding Muscle Mass daughter Sumthintotalkabout to a three and one-quarter length win for trainer Stephen Bossence of London, ON and his partner Stephen Palermo of Brampton, ON. Ill Stay Here and fan favourite Oh My Magic finished second and third in the 1:59.3 mile. The three-year-old trotting fillies will make their third Grassroots start at Georgian Downs on July 14, with each of the Canada Day winners hoping to add a few more points to their total in pursuit of a berth in the post season. Ontario Horse Racing

Tamarind changed his tactics but the result was the same Tuesday at the harness racing meeting at The Meadows as he captured his third straight in the $18,000 Preferred Handicap Trot. Customarily a closer, Tamarind zipped to the front for Aaron Merriman in a snappy 27.1 and was able to withstand the two-pronged late challenge from Trustworthy Kid outside and Tall Cotton in the Lightning Lane. The 7-year-old son of Angus Hall-Spicegirl Kosmos prevailed by 1/2 length over Tall Cotton in 1:53.2, with Trustworthy Kid a close-up third. Bill Bercury owns and trains Tamarind, who extended his career bankroll to $665,044. In Tuesday’s companion feature, the $18,000 Filly & Mare Preferred Handicap Trot, Whata Donato stalked Cowgirl Hall from the pocket, then charged by in the Lightning Lane for trainer/driver Doug Snyder to defeat Cowgirl Hall by a neck in 1:54.4. Unefoisdansmavie earned show. Frank Poerio, Jr. campaigns Whata Donato, a 5-year-old daughter of Donato Hanover-Donven Promise who now boasts $280,276 in lifetime earnings. Evan Pattak

Trois-Rivieres, Quebec – The $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series for three-year-old trotters gets underway Wednesday evening at the Hippodrome 3R and leading driver Denis St Pierre is just two wins away from his 4,000th career victory. The Quebec-Bred Series gets underway early on the program in the first and third races. Through the month of July there will be four weeks of elimination competition with the top eight point earners returning on Sunday, September 6 for their respective $65,000 finals. The first race is headed by the filly Double Chance, who starts from the rail for driver Sylvain Lacaille. The daughter of Majestic Son enters the race off a sharp 2:01.3 triumph in her last start, her first win in just two starts this season for owner/trainer Serge Nadeau of Scott, QC. Other contenders in the race include Gros Bill (post six) and National Trace (post 5). The second division for colts in the third race spotlights what may be the two best horses in the series, Intouchable and Promesses Imperial. Intouchable was bred to be a winner and looks the part after his first start of the 2015 season. He is sired by Angus Hall from the top mare Iceberg Angus, thus making him a full brother to top performer Maximuscle, who recently won the Quebec-Bred Series final for older trotters. Trained by Maxime Velaye for owner/breeder Ecurie Provoquante of Mirabel, QC, Intouchable may have been winless last year at age 2, but still earned more than $26,000. Now age 3, Intouchable wowed the fans in his first start of the season at Rideau Carlton with a 1:58.3 triumph and starts from post two in the third race for trotting master Mario Charron, who is also the reinsman for Maximuscle. But hometown fans also have their favorite in the race, Promesses Imperial, who starts from post three for owner/driver Jerome Lombar of Bromont, QC. The homebred son of Imperial Angus is on a three-race win streak at the Hippodrome 3R and in his last start took a lifetime mark of 2:01.3 on the Trois-Rivieres half mile oval. The late bloomer Seeyou Meh, is also a contender in the race and starts from the rail for driver Robert Shepherd. He has but one start in his career, but that was a winning effort in 2:02 at Georgia Downs. After scoring his fourth driving quadruple at 3R this past Sunday, leading driver Denis St Pierre is just two wins away from achieving career milestone victory number 4,000. He is listed to drive in six of the ten races on the program. Post time Wednesday is 7:00 pm. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club

The recognition of the importance of the trotting sector to the overall health of the breeding and racing history by successive Harness Racing Victoria administrations paid a handsome dividend last breeding season. Five years ago there were 550 trotting mares bred from in Australia compared to 734 bred from in New Zealand, however, there has been a dramatic turnaround created by an increase in racing opportunities and split gender age classics in Victoria. Figures compiled from last season reveal that the numbers of trotting mares bred from in New Zealand had dropped 20.8% from 2009 to 581, while in Australia the situation was a mirror image with an increase of 11.8% to 615. Remarkably the percentage of trotting mares bred from in Australia in 1999/2000 represented just 4.8% (454 of 9,413) of the total mares bred from, however, the comparative figure for 2013/14 was 10.1% (603 out of a total 5,975). The figure for 2014/15 is expected to be marginally higher again. Headlining the numbers were Majestic Son USA with 97 mares, Yankee Spider with 56, Bacardi Lindy USA (43), Angus Hall USA (36), Great Success USA (28), Imperial Count USA (27), Fling It USA (25), Ready Cash (FRA) (23), Muscle Hill USA (23), Andover Hall USA (22), Victoria Trotters Derby winner Danny Bouchea (21) and La Coocaracha’s son Louey Louey Louey (20). A fascinating survey of the comparative numbers of mares served by stallions based in Australia, New Zealand, North America is illuminating, especially when looking at the situation in 1999/2000. Australian based stallions served 356 mares in the 2014/15 season (383 in 1999/2000), New Zealand based stallions served 10 mares in 2014/15 (8 in 1999/2000), North American based stallions 216 mares in 2014/15 (26 in 1999/2000) and finally European based stallions 33 mares in 2014/15 (16 in 2014/15). I think they call that internationalization. The news just keeps getting too as there is an impending announcement of the importation of a 1:53 2/5s winning son of 2007 USA Harness Horse of the Year and Hambletonian winner Donato Hanover.  Furthermore, after decades of spurning the trotter Alabar Farms will be offering the frozen semen of not only Majestic Son but also the Danish Derby winner Peak who distinguished himself by also winning the Group One NZ Trotters FFA at Addington (NZ). Peak is by French stallion Ganymede, the sire of 45 Classic winners in Europe as well the Vicbred Super Sires 4YO champion Vincennes, who won the Wagon Apollo FFA at Tabcorp Park (Melton) at his last racetrack appearance. And to think that 55 years ago there was not a single North American trotting stallion in Australia and the numbers of trotting foals being bred was less than one hundred. Thank heavens for the visionary Victorian Harness Racing Hall of Famer Chris Howe who stood Bank Note, the first American trotting stallion imported direct to Australia post WW2 in 1961, and later Mt Everest. Chris was a tireless evangelist for the trotter, however, his efforts would have counted for little had it not been for administrators such as Graeme Cochran who insisted that the Victoria Sires Stake feature three age trotting classics and furthermore under his watch the Inter Dominion Trotters Championship came to Victoria for the first time and the Victoria Trotters Oaks was inaugurated. Next Friday night at Tabcorp Park there will be a ten race all trotting programme headlined by six Group One Vicbred Super Sires Finals, a stunning endorsement of the vision of administrators who supported the never say die efforts of countless trotting breeders and enthusiasts. John Peck

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