Many retired Standardbred horses are rehomed and retrained into new disciplines including pleasure saddle horses or Western /English show horses. Others become pasture buddies and family pets. Such is the story of the 11 harness racing mare P.H. Super Model. Foaled in Shubenacadie by owner Dr. Trevin K. Shive, Super Model had 95 lifetime starts recording three victories since her maiden season at Truro Raceway in 2006. At the completion of her harness racing career, the mare was given to a re-homing stable, Morning Star Acres, located north of Moncton. Morning Star Acres is a non-profit, family-oriented farm dedicated to an equine retraining and re-homing program. Bill and Jo-Ann Livingstone of Toney Bay, N.S. were in the market for a carthorse to participate in driving events held in their area. After a visit to the Morning Star Acres website, a few phone calls and a visit to the New Brunswick farm, the Livingston family and PH Supermodel united. The horse has since become known as Tyra. This past Saturday, Tyra made her debut appearance in her new career as a carthorse. The Wallace River Haflingers & Equestrian Centre hosted a novice driving clinic under the guidance of the Nova Scotia Driving Society. Seven horses, ponies and minis were in attendance, including P H Super Model with Joann and Bill each taking turns at the reins. The Standardbred breed as a whole is eager to please, fearless and extremely intelligent. In addition most of these animals have had exposure to vehicles, crowds and loud noises, as well as trailering and shoeing, Established in 2007, the Maritime Standardbred Pleasure Horse Association (www.mspha.ca), based out of Truro, Nova Scotia, is actively devoted to the re-homing of Standardbreds as an all-purpose pleasure horse and encourages the new owners to showcase their “graduates” of the program at local exhibitions, parades and clinics. Note: Diane Daniels is the race office supervisor at Truro Raceway. Her ‘Trackside’ column can be found in the Truro Daily News every Saturday. Reprinted with Permission of The Truro Daily News
ELORA - Sunny skies and smiling faces are in the forecast for this Sunday's Open House at Grand River Raceway. The Elora track will host its seventh annual backstretch Open House on Sunday, May 24. Guests are invited to drop-in any time from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. for a rare glimpse of harness racing behind-the-scenes. A full tour of the Open House's four main stations will last approximately one hour. The itinerary includes the unique opportunity to drive a racehorse. Standardbred racehorses and double-seated jog carts from the Hands On Horses Program provide the horsepower. Other interactive stations include a tour of the judges' stand and announcer's booth high atop the grandstand with track announcer Gary Guy. Back in the barn, visitors will learn the basics of breeding, owning, training, driving and caring for racehorses in sessions led by industry experts. Dr. Alison Moore's station will explore the high-performance racehorse by comparing it to human athletes. Machinery enthusiasts will enjoy the opportunity to view and learn about the equipment and techniques required to maintain the track surface. The ever-popular starting car will also be on display, and open for photo opps. Riders from Racing Under Saddle (RUS) Ontario will also be on-hand to provide demonstrations of these Trot MontÃ© races - popular in Europe - being showcased at harness tracks throughout the province. No registration is required for the Open House. The event is suitable for all ages, but children must be accompanied by an adult at all times. The Open House will run rain or shine. Participants are urged to wear closed-toe shoes and casual, comfortable clothing. Admission is free, but participants are urged to make a $2 donation at the door to support the Ontario Standardbred Adoption Society. A BBQ lunch and beverages will be available for purchase between 11:30 - 2:00. The Grand River Raceway Open House is presented in cooperation with the Hands On Horse Program and the Ontario Harness Horse Association. More than 1,500 people have attended Grand River Raceway's Open House event in the past six years. For more information, visit http://grandriverraceway.com/open-house/ or call (519) 846-5455 x238 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Kelly Spencer
HALIFAX - Missing financial records and meddling by former board members at the Nova Scotia Provincial Exhibition (NSPE) highlight some of the concerns revealed in an operational review prepared for the provincial government. Although the review, prepared by KPMG at the request of Agriculture Minister Keith Colwell, did not uncover any criminal wrongdoing, operations were negatively impacted by a board of directors that regularly interfered with how the facility was run, the report said. “In recent years the Commission has experienced turnover at the general manager position,” the report states. “This is partly due to the governance structure in that the board of directors have been actively involved in the commission’s operations which has undermined the general manager’s authority.” Poor financial planning also resulted in the exhibition commission being unable to pay its bills, which resulted in “significant payment delays” and ultimately led to loss of credit that forced the NSPE to pay cash for delivery of all goods and services. The commission also is at risk of having its pari-mutuel contracts with other race tracks cancelled because of a failure to remit payouts for amounts collected for betting on the other parties’ races (net of payouts), the report noted, which “has resulted in strained relationships with key racing partners.” As well, financial results for the commission “have not been in line with expectations”, in part because of declining attendance and a lack of sufficient cash flow to fund the ongoing capital maintenance of facilities and in certain circumstances cover the operating costs, the report disclosed. “A review of financial and business affairs of the Commission conducted by Grant Thornton in August 2013, declared it insolvent, where current and long term liabilities ($638,000 and $373,000 respectively) and cash flow constraints prevented it to make payment on its obligations,” the report said. The KPMG review also determined that the NSPE’s financial records for the years 2009 through to 2011, were completely missing, a factor that Colwell told the Truro Daily News was especially concerning for him. “It sure did (cause him concern). But if it’s not available it’s not there,” he said, of the missing information, which was attributed to a changeover in staff at the NSPE administration office as well as the introduction of new computer software. “And whatever happened to it we don’t know,” he said. “That highlights one of the weaknesses in the whole system.” Colwell said based on the report’s findings and given ”the deteriorated condition of the buildings” on the NSPE grounds, he said the facility had been mismanaged for a “long time.” And he said that was also pretty much the assessment of the auditors when he addressed their findings in the report. “The list goes on and on and on and on,” he said, of proper business controls that were not in place under the previous management. “It’s just a whole lot of not really solid management practices,” Colwell said, of the overall findings. “They said the place really needed to be run properly and the bottom line is, it wasn’t.” Facility rentals also have to be brought in line with reasonable market rates to ensure the facility can operate without government handouts, the minister said. And controls also have be put in place for things such as gate admissions for the annual Exhibition. For example, visitors to the Middle Musquodoboit Exhibition are given a bracelet with a serial number on it when they pay their admission fee,” Colwell said, compared to the provincial exhibition in Bible Hill where there simply is “no accountability for the cash. That’s just one example.” Despite the past struggles, however, Colwell said that with proper controls put in place, the NSPE can have a promising future. “We’re very optimistic about the facility at a time when a lot of facilities are struggling and I think this one has a great deal of potential,” he said. Reprinted with permission of The Truro Daily News
On behalf of the Saint John Harness Horsemen Association, I would like to extend a heartfelt thanks and gratitude for supporting our fundraising efforts on May 8th in Saint John. We would like to recognize and thank all the sponsors, volunteers, and those who came out to support our group initiative to raise funds to upgrade and maintain the racing surface at Exhibition Park Raceway. Response and support leading up to, and including the May 8th fundraiser was overwhelming to say the least. We doubled our goal of financial support and once again the harness racing industry came together from New Brunswick and other jurisdiction's. We are excited to return to racing this summer on July 1st ( tentatively ) at Fredericton Raceway and we invite you to take in all the harness racing action this year and appreciate as always support from fans and industry participants in New Brunswick. Sincerely, Debbie Mahar, Saint John Harness Horsemen Association
Long time owner and harness racing industry volunteer Carl Bagnall of Stratford, and Two Year Old Pacing Colt Dixieland Band, owned by Reg MacPherson, and David and Aaron MacKenzie were the major award winners as the sold out PEI Standardbred Horse Owners Awards held Saturday, April 18th at the Rodd Royalty Inn. Mr. Bagnall was recognized for his contribution to PEI racing as a breeder, owners, trainer, driver, and industry official. Dixieland Band edged out Paymenowpaymelater for Horse of the Year honours in one of the closest results in recent event history. Dixieland Band was bred by Meridian Farms of Milton and earned almost $51,000 in his Two Year Old campaign. Scott MacPhail was named Horseman of the year for his decades long contribution to the PEI matinee racetrack program. Gold Cup and Saucer Co-ordinator Heather Dixon was named Horsewoman of the year for her service to the successful Old Home Week racing program. Guest speaker Dr. Ian Moore updated the crowd on his stable star State Treasurer and the large roster of young horses he is prepping for the Grand Circuit competitions. Other award winners were: 2 Year Old Colt Trot Windemere Ty had earnings of over $21,000, and 10 of 14 in the first three. Bred by Windemere Farms, owned and trained by Ralph Annear, co-owned and driven by Jack Panting. 2 Year old Filly Trot Paymenowpaymelater was a nine time winner, with earnings of $30,862. Bred by Eldred Nicholson, owned by Wade Peconi, trained by Earl Watts, driven by Kenny Arsenault . 2 Year old Pacing Colt Atlantic Breeders Crown winner Dixieland Band earned almost $51,000 in 2014. Bred by Meridian Farms, owned by Reg MacPherson, David and Aaron MacKenzie, trained by Kevin MacLean and driven by Gilles Barrieau. 2 Year old Pacing Filly The winner of almost $37,000 Dusty Lane Bria, was bred by Travis Wilkie, owned by Larry Chappell, co-owned and trained by Kenny Wilkie, primarily driven by Kenny Arsenault. 3 Year old Colt Trot Dusty Lane Galaxy earned over $23, 000 in 2014, with a record of 2.01. Bred by Dusty Lane Farms , co-owned by Peter Buchanan and the estate of George Boswell, trained and driven by Gary Chappell. 3 Year Old Filly Trot Maritime Breeders Champion Southfield Shadow earned $19,000, and was bred by Meridian Farms, Owned by Southfield Farms, trained by Thane Mann, and driven by Terry Gallant. 3 Year old Pacing Colt Arties Magic was Bred and co-owned by Windemere Farms, co-owned by Clive Balderston, and trained by Earl Watts. 3 Year old Pacing Filly A winner of over $56,000, Lovineveryminute , owned by Kent Duggan, Lana Murphy and Windemere Farms and trained by Earl Watts. Claiming Horse of the Year Forever Paradise was a seven time winner in the claiming ranks in 2014, bred by Art Millar, owned by Reg MacPherson, trained by Kevin MacLean, and driven by Marc Campbell . Aged Trotting Horse A thirteen time winner in 2014, Zip The Lip had an incredible 23 for 26 in the top three. Owned by Orville Willis and trainer Don Sweet, and driven by Brian MacPhee. Aged Trotting Mare Pleasure Girls was a 2.00 winner , and is owned by Shelly Gass, trained by father Ronnie, and driven by Corey MacPherson. Aged Pacing Horse ASTOR , a 1.55.4 winner at the CDP with earnings of over $24,000. Owned by Foxyhall Racing Stable, trained and driven by Jason Hughes. Aged Pacing Mare Stayoutofmyaffair was a nine time winner, included a 1.55.1 clocking at the CDP. Owned by Robbie Hughes, trained and driven by Jason Hughes. Fan Favourite Award One of the toughest campaigners in Prince Edward Island racing, a 53 time winner, and a horse that is getting better with age. Blu Meadow Willie was bred by Ralph Frizzell, co-owned by Brenda MacInnis, and co-owned, , trained, and driven by Bob McInnis. Pacing Horse of the Year Dixieland Band, Bred by Meridian Farms, Owned by Reg MacPherson, trained by Kevin MacLean and driven by Marc Campbell. Trotter of the Year Paymenowpaymelater was Bred by Eldred Nicholson, owned by Wade Peconi, trained by Earl Watts, driven by Kenny Arsenault. Horse of the Year Dixieland Band Owned by Reg MacPherson, trained by Kevin MacLean and driven by Marc Campbell. Grooms of the Year: Melissa MacRae and Shane Bagloe Mr Trot Challenge Brian MacPhee. Rookie Driver Brandon Webster Leading Percentage Driver With a UDRS of .419: Gilles Barrieau Leading Dash Winning Driver A dead heat, Tied with 126 wins in 2014 were Marc Campbell and Jason Hughes. Leading Percentage Trainer Earl Watts. Appreciation Awards Hon. Ron MacKinley and Heather Gamester Standardbred Canada Owner of the Year: Dan Ross. Most Dedicated Horseperson Mr. Gary Chappell By Tom Clark PEI Standardbred Horse Owners Association Awards.
London, March 12, 2015 -- Officials at The Raceway in London have announced that Friday morning's qualifying session has been cancelled to give the track crew time to prepare for Friday nights live harness racing program which is scheduled for 7:15 pm. The track was forced to cancel programs this past Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday due to the warmer temperatures which caused extreme thawing in the racing surface. Greg Blanchard Raceway Manager
TORONTO, February 26 - A few weeks off didn't bother Nippy W Hanover as she was razor-sharp in winning the harness racing $41,200 Miss Vera Bars series final Thursday night at Woodbine. Originally set for two preliminary legs and a final, Mother Nature caused the second-leg of the Miss Vera Bars to be cancelled twice, forcing officials to scrap the second-leg and send the series directly to a final Thursday night. All nine three-year-old pacing fillies that competed in the first leg on February 5 returned for the final. Maplelea, the winner of leg one, took most of the support at the windows and was sent off as the 4/5 favourite. However, she would have to settle for second-best, as Nippy W Hanover got the job done in 1:57.1. Driven by Mario Baillargeon, Nippy W Hanover got away in second from her rail starting spot. Down the backstretch, Baillargeon opted to circle around to the lead and never looked back. After reaching the three-quarter pole in 1:28 with Maplelea first up at her wheel, Nippy W Hanover turned aside the favourite's challenge in the lane and paced home in :29.1 to win by 2 ½ lengths. Wake N Bake closed well to finish third, while Docs Hollywood took fourth. A daughter of American Ideal, Nippy W Hanover is trained by Blair Burgess for owners Karin Olsson Burgess and Mac Nichol. The sophomore pacing filly finished second in the first leg after winning her 2015 debut the week before. The series final victory improves Nippy W Hanover's career record to four wins from 12 starts and earnings exceeding $50,000. A $2 win ticket on Nippy W Hanover returned $6.90. Nippy W Hanover In order to be eligible to the Miss Vera Bars series, the three-year-old fillies had to be non-winners of three races or $40,000 lifetime as of October 31, 2014. Mark McKelvie
It came down to the final race and an inquiry for Marilyn Spitzig and Debbie Campbell to garner the 11 dollars in points and leapfrog into first place in the Hanover Raceway and Slots Handicapping Contest. The event lasted 8 weeks and was sponsored by Hanover Raceway and Slots, Woodbine Entertainment and HDTV in Hanover and Walkerton. Spitzig and Campbell each win a 50 inch High Def Smart TV from HDTV thanks to their final total of $323.80 dollars in selections over the 8 week tournament. Ron Lauson and Mike Stachelscheid of Hanover finished in 2nd place and won $500 dollars, while Harold and Heather Fleet of Hanover finished in 3rd place, and won $250.00. A total of 15 teams of 2 and 3 players took part in the contest. Hanover’s next Race promotion is a 2015 Dodge Ram Truck giveaway with Woodbine. HPI or Cash Card players can register at Woodbineentertainment.com/winatruck and each time they spend $50.00 in wagers at a Woodbine sponsored simulcast theatre, they will receive 1 ballot towards the new truck giveaway. The contest runs each and every day in March, so participants can earn up to 31 ballots. For more information contact the Hanover Raceway Simulcast. Hanover Raceway
London, February 22, 2015 -- The Raceway at Western Fair District in London honoured its top harness racing performers for 2014 during their annual awards night on Saturday. Among the highlights was driver Alfie Carroll taking home his first trophy as Driver of the Year, Kendal Gustav being selected as overall Horse of the Year and Natasha House being voted Caretaker of the Year. Two other awards were announced the night of the ceremony and they include Lisa Thompson who was selected as Horsewoman of the Year and the Dave Wall Outstanding Service Award which went to longtime London horseman Larry Fitzsimmons. Here is a complete look at this year's Raceway award winners: Older Pacing Horse - Kendal Gustav Older Pacing Mare - Twilight Seelster Three-Year-Old Pacing Colt - Good Side Three-Year-Old Pacing Filly - Delta Grace Tone Older Trotting Horse - Moonbeam Hall Older Trotting Mare - Thundering Ovation Three-Year-Old Trotting Colt - M C Wood Three-Year-Old Trotting Filly - Sonny With A Chance Claiming Pacer - Cat Four Claiming Trotter (Tied) - Strike A Light and Weskey Driver - Alfie Carroll Owner - Keith Cassell Dave Wall Outstanding Service Award - Larry Fitzsimmons Caretaker - Natasha House Horse of the Year - Kendal Gustav Horsewoman of the Year - Lisa Thompson Greg Blanchard
TORONTO, February 21 - Ontario sired four-year-olds were the main attraction Saturday night at Woodbine Racetrack in a pair of harness racing winter series finals. The $45,000 Ontario Boys final for four-year-old pacers and the 44,600 Ontario Girls final for four-year-old pacing mares were co-main events on Saturday night's 11-race card. All eyes were on heavy favourite Nirvana Seelster in the Ontario Boys final, as he went for the series sweep. Driven by Phil Hudon, Nirvana Seelster sprinted out quickly to the front to grab his usual spot on the lead and would cruise along in control cutting out fractions of :27, :56 and 1:24.4 In the stretch, Nirvana Seelster continued to pace strong and was never in any danger of surrendering his lead. He posted a final-quarter of :27.4 to score a length and a quarter victory in 1:52.3. Ideal Jet got up to finish second, while Kindofabigdeal took the show spot. A son of Camluck, Nirvana Seelster is trained by Bill Budd for owner Bruce Davy. The four-year-old pacer swept the Ontario Boys series by winning each leg on the front-end. Nirvana Seelster now has three wins from seven starts this year and ten career victories overall. The winner's share of the purse pushes his career bankroll over $145,000. Nirvana Seelster returned $2.80 to win. Nirvana Seelster In the Ontario Girls final, Artistic Fusion was sent off as the heavy 2/5 favourite and did not disappoint winning in 1:53.4. A first-half battle saw a parked out Regally Ready finally clear to the front before the half ahead of Performing Art. However, Jack Moiseyev wasted no time charging Bet Ya up from fourth to overtake the lead from Regally Ready at the half in :55. Meanwhile, Artistic Fusion and driver Sylvain Filion paced along fourth and made a first-over move on the way to the final turn. Artistic Fusion and Bet Ya would slug it out past the three-quarter pole in 1:23.4 to bring the field into the lane. In the stretch, Artistic Fusion powered by Bet Ya and paced on to the win the Ontario Girls final by a length and a half. A hard-closing Jakardez got up for second, while Bet Ya finished third. A daughter of Artistic Fella, Artistic Fusion captured the first leg of the series, but then saw her four-race win streak snapped in last week's second leg by Bet Ya. The series finale victory improves her record to five wins from six starts in 2015. Artistic Fusion is trained by Joe Agostino for owner Mike Foote and now has an Ontario Girls title to go along her Blizzard series triumph a month ago. Artistic Fusion now has 11 career victories and earnings of over $142,000. She paid $2.90 to win. Artistic Fusion In order to be eligible to the Ontario Boys and Girls series, the Ontario sired four-year-olds had to be non-winners of $100,000 lifetime or $50,000 in 2014 as of October 31, 2014. Mark McKelvie
Hanover, Bentinck & Brant Agricultural Society is requesting approval for an amendment of the race date schedule at Hanover Raceway (Hanover). The Ontario Racing Commission (ORC) is circulating this application for amendment to the approved race date schedule and will receive comments on the application from interested industry participants before making its decision on the application. Copies of the application and business case to support these changes are included with this Notice. Please click here to view the full Notice to the Industry.
TORONTO, February 16 - Bourbon Bay completed the General Brock series sweep with a dominating harness racing victory Monday night at Woodbine Racetrack. A field of nine four-year-old trotters contested the $50,800 final of the three-week series. Bourbon Bay and driver Mike Saftic came into the finale off two impressive victories in the opening two rounds and they lived up to their 3/5 billing with another eye-catching performance. A son of Sand Vic, Bourbon Bay sprinted out to the lead from post position one and posted a speedy opening-quarter of :27. A fired up Bourbon Bay had to be reeled in a bit by Saftic down the backstretch as he had a two-length advantage over Severus Hanover in second and more than ten-lengths on Bags For All in third. The duo would reach the half in :56.1 and continue to roll along around the final turn, while the back of the pack tried to tighten up to the leaders. After reaching the three-quarter pole in 1:26, Bourbon Bay kicked into another gear and extended his lead back out to several lengths on his opponents in the stretch. When it was all said and done, Bourbon Bay scored an easy-looking 4 ½ length victory over Bags For All in 1:55.1. Meadowview Vicky finished third, while Severus Hanover took fourth. A four-year-old gelding, Bourbon Bay had been racing primarily in New York, but shipped north of the border into the Mike Sinclair barn for the General Brock. Bourbon Bay is leased by John Cummings Jr. of Nichols, New York and now has four wins from six starts in 2015. Monday's victory was the ninth career score for the son of Sand Vic and pushes his career bankroll over $75,000. Bourbon Bay paid $3.20 to win. In order to be eligible to the General Brock, the three- and four-year-old trotters had to be non-winners of $50,000 lifetime as of October 31, 2014. Mark McKelvie
TORONTO, February 14 - The second leg of the Ontario Boys harness racing series was contested under frosty conditions Saturday night at Woodbine Racetrack. A group of 13 four-year-old pacers were split into two $18,000 divisions for the second leg of the three-week event. Nirvana Seelster took last week's only division and was back to crush his opponents again Saturday night. Driven by Phil Hudon, Nirvana Seelster went straight to the front and never allowed his rivals to get close. After reaching the three-quarter pole in 1:25.1, Nirvana Seelster separated himself from the pack in the stretch and scored an impressive 6¼ lengths victory in 1:54.3. Ramblingamblinman finished second just ahead of Mittcent Van Gogh in third. A four-year-old son of Camluck, Nirvana Seelster is trained by Bill Budd for owner Bruce Davy. The gelding now has two wins from six starts in 2015 and nine in his career. The round two victory pushes his bankroll over $133,000. Nirvana Seelster returned $6.10 to win and will now have a chance to sweep the series in next week's final. Nirvana Seelster In the first division of the night, Ideal Jet and driver Randy Waples made a second-quarter move to the front and never looked back en route to a 1:55.2 victory. A four-year-old son of Jeremes Jet, Ideal Jet finished eighth in last week's single division. The Craig Barss trainee got away third Saturday night, but was moved before the half by Waples to take the lead. After reaching the three-quarter pole in 1:26.2, Ideal Jet paced home in :29 to win by a length and a quarter. P L Heavenly finished second, while Regal Babe took the show spot. Saturday's victory was Ideal Jet's first win in 2015 from five starts. The four-year-old now has four career wins and earnings exceeding $96,000 for owners Nurko Sokolovic and Barss. Ideal Jet paid $6.50 to win. Ideal Jet The $45,000 final of the Ontario Boys series is scheduled for next Saturday (February 21) and will be joined by the $44,600 final of the Ontario Girls series. Live racing continues Monday night at Woodbine. Post time is 7:25 p.m. Mark McKelvie
TORONTO, February 14 - There is no shame in finishing second, but Bags For All and harness racing driver James MacDonald would like to avoid the three-peat in that department Monday night in the $50,800 General Brock series final at Woodbine. The Joe Cirasuola trainee Bags For All came into the General Brock series riding a four-race win streak. Now entering the final, Bags For All has started a new streak, but not one to brag about. The four-year-old trotting mare finished second in both the first and second legs of the three-week event for three- and four-year-old trotters. However, the runner-up finishes have not been for a lack of effort. In the first leg, driver James MacDonald put Bags For All on the front, but she just got beat at the wire by Bourbon Bay. The next week, MacDonald worked out a two-hole trip, but was out-sprinted in the lane by the leader Cash For Gold. MacDonald said he changed his tactics up from the first to second leg, but it just didn't work out. "She kind of goes to sleep on the front and she's not quite as good," said MacDonald. "That's why I let Mike Vanderkemp go easy last week, but then his horse (Cash For Gold) was just really good and we got out-sprinted." Although MacDonald has raced Bags For All near the front over her last three starts and had success, he noted her best performance came from the back. "If you look at her lines, the day (January 16) I raced her from off-the-pace she came home in :27.3 and she was awesome." In the preliminary legs of the General Brock, MacDonald said things just worked out that the front was where he went, but that doesn't mean the final will be the same. "She drew bad and she's got the gate speed and there was no real leavers. Every time I left with her I got there easy, I never really got roughed up too bad, so it was just a case of taking what they were giving me," said MacDonald. "But in the final if I can work out a trip I think she will be better off." The two horses to defeat Bags For All have stamped themselves as the horses to beat in Monday's final and both have good posts to start from. Bourbon Bay will look for the series sweep from post one, while Cash For Gold has drawn post six. Bags For All will start between the two favourites from post three and MacDonald will be keeping a close eye on his top rivals. "Cash For Gold was really good last week. Mike Vanderkemp was just sitting on him down the lane and we were flying right into the wind," said MacDonald. "Saftic's horse (Bourbon Bay) looked awesome in (1):54 last week and looks like definitely the one to beat." MacDonald is confident Bags For All can step out of the bridesmaid's role and into the spotlight Monday night. "She's a nice mare and I think if I can work out a trip, she can win." The General Brock Series final has been carded as race five on Monday evening. Here is the field for the $50,800 final. PP/Horse/Driver/Morning line 1. Bourbon Bay - Mike Saftic (2-1) 2. Severus Hanover - Jody Jamieson (10-1) 3. Bags For All - James MacDonald (7-2) 4. Oaklea Wyatt - J.R. Plante (12-1) 5. Illseeuincourt - Trevor Henry (8-1) 6. Cash For Gold - Michiel Vanderkemp (5-2) 7. Meadowview Vicky - Simon Allard (15-1) 8. Latoka - Phil Hudon (15-1) 9. Tellmehowyoulikeit - Anthony MacDonald (20-1) 10. Stuarts Dynasty - Mario Baillargeon (20-1) AE: Musical Spell - Chris Christoforou (20-1) Mark McKelvie
TORONTO, February 13 - The frigid temperatures continued Friday night at Woodbine, but the harness racing action was hot in the second legs of The Count B and Ontario Girls series. Round two of The Count B for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings drew 13 horses split into two $17,000 divisions, while the Ontario Girls for four-year-old pacing mares second leg featured a field of ten in a lone $18,000 division. In the first division of The Count B, the talk of the tote-board was the undefeated Camvicted, but a final turn and stretch battle took just enough out of him to suffer his first career defeat. Driven by Trevor Henry, Camvicted got away second early, but was quickly right lined to the front around the first turn. It appeared the favourite was going to get to call all the shots, but Legion Of Boom and driver Doug McNair came first up around the final turn to confront the leader. After a third-quarter of :28.1, Camvicted came into the stretch with Legion Of Boom breathing down his neck. The two geldings went toe-to-toe down the lane, but would be picked off late by the hard-charging His Boy Elroy and Jody Jamieson. Situated fifth and more than five-lengths off the front at the three-quarter pole, His Boy Elroy unleashed a late rally of :27.4 down the centre of the track to score the victory by a length in a career best 1:55.1. Camvicted had to settle for third, as Legion Of Boom edged by him late to finish second. A three-year-old son of Jeremes Jet, His Boy Elroy finished fourth in an opening leg division. He is trained by Jean Guy Belliveau for owner Dan Mac Rae. Friday's second leg victory was His Boy Elroy's first win of 2015 and his second career tally. He now has over $31,000 banked from 15 career starts. His Boy Elroy returned $13 to win. His Boy Elroy The second division of The Count B saw plenty of action down the backstretch, but once Conversation Boy and Sylvain Filion found the front it was game over. Conversation Boy got away in fourth, as Newbie sprinted out to the lead. The lead was short lived, as immediately down the backstretch Nobettorplacetobe moved from second to first. However, leg one winner Dialamara followed from third and circled around to become the third leader by the mid-way point. Filion kept the chain going and rushed Coversation Boy from fourth to first before the final turn and that would be the winning move. Conversation Boy reached the three-quarter pole in 1:26.1 and then paced comfortably down the lane holding off Dialamara to win by three-quarters of a length in a career best 1:54.1. Nobettorplacetobe finished third, while Newbie took fourth. A son of Tell All, Conversation Boy was able to turn the tables on Dialamara, as he had finished second to his counterpart in a first leg division. Conversation Boy is trained by Richard Moreau for owner Robert Key and now has two wins from six starts this season. The second leg victory now gives him four career wins and pushes his career earnings over $47,000. A $2 win ticket on Conversation Boy returned $4.70. Conversation Boy Later on in the evening, it was the ladies turn to shine in the Ontario Girls series. Bet Ya and trainer-driver Jack Moiseyev got to the wire just in time to score the leg two victory. A four-year-old daughter of Jeremes Jet, Bet Ya got away in fifth and made a first-over move down the backstretch. She would eventually clear by the favourite Regally Ready before the final turn and reached the three-quarter pole in 1:25.1. In the stretch, Bet Ya and Moiseyev were able to create some separation on their rivals and appeared to be on their way to victory, but Artistic Fusion made a late rally to make things very tight at the wire and put the photo-finish camera to use. In the photo, Bet Ya prevailed by a nose over Artistic Fusion in 1:54 for her first win in two starts this year and seventh of her career. Jakardez got up to finish third. Bet Ya is owned by Joanne Colville and Nancy Macnevin. Friday night's victory pushes her bankroll over the $100,000 mark to $108,430. The clocking of 1:54 is also a new lifetime best for the Ontario sired mare. Bet Ya paid $7.30 to win. Bet Ya Both series will conclude next week with their respective fianls. The $43,800 final of The Count B will take place next Friday (February 20). The $44,600 Ontario Girls final will take place the next evening (Febraury 21) to go along with the $45,000 Ontario Boys final. The second leg of the Ontario Boys is scheduled for Saturday night. Post time is 7:25 p.m. Mark McKelvie - WEG Communications
TORONTO, February 12 - Due to extreme cold temperatures and wind chill, the Thursday, February 12 card of live harness racing at Woodbine has been cancelled. The Friday, February 13 live card will go as planned at 7:25pm. The qualifiers scheduled for Thursday afternoon at Woodbine will now move to Friday, February 13 at 3:30pm. The 2nd leg of the Miss Vera Bars series, scheduled for this evening, will now be raced Thursday, February 19, while the $35,000 final is set for Thursday, February 26.