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Radical Dreamer, with Marit Valstad in the irons for harness racing trainer/co-owner Ron Oneill and co-owner Doug Millard, took another Ontario monte test Saturday evening on the Canadian Trotting Classic card.  The five year-old mare by Majestic Son-Paidindreams-Royal Strength was victorious by ¾ length to record her fourth monte win this season. Smarty Pants rallied strongly around the last turn and battled to the line for Riina Rekila but could not get to the winner. Twin B Excalibur finished third for Evelyn Harms after racing forwardly placed throughout. The non-wagering event carried a purse of C$15,000. Mohawk 9/13/14-Monte Trot, C$15,000 (after race 3) Non-wagering, 9 starters after one scratch Fractions: :30 - 1:01 - 1:31.3 - 2:02.2 Radical Dreamer (5f Majestic Son-Paidindreams-Royal Strength), Marit Valstad up for trainer/co-owner Ron Oneill and Doug Millard. Smarty Pants (5f Kadabra-Twitty-Conway Hall), Riina Rekila, trainer Richard Moreau and owners Stan Klemencic and ASA Farm. Twin B Excalibur (11g Earl-Senorita Sierra-Sierra Kosmos)m Evelyn Harms for trainer/co-owner Randall Fulmer along with Phillip Katcher. Next up for the monte specialists in Ontario are September 20 at Flamboro and October 1 at Western Fair. Thomas H. Hicks http://www.monteamerica.com/

CAMPBELLVILLE, September 13 - Father Patrick, the 1-5 choice with harness racing driver Yannick Gingras, scored a popular one and three-quarter length victory in the $682,000 Canadian Trotting Classic Saturday at Mohawk Racetrack. Trainer Jimmy Takter held more than a strong hand going into this year's renewal for three-year-old trotters, sending out Hambletonian winner Trixton, a son of 2009 Classic winner Muscle Hill and Father Patrick, last year's divisional champion who had been expected to win the Meadowlands showcase event in August but made an unexpected early break. The toteboard reflected that, as Father Patrick was 1-5, Trixton 9-5 when they went behind the gate, while their five rivals ranged from 18-1 to 80-1. The two favourites, both of whom had won eight of their 10 starts this year, were expected to duke it out but this time it was Trixton, driven by Takter, who went off stride at the start to eliminate himself. It wasn't a walk in the park but the win at least put aside the nightmare of this year's Hambletonian for Father Patrick, a son of Cantab Hall-Gala Dream. Parked in fourth for the first half-mile, as Damfoolrmillionair took the field through a quarter in :26.4 and the half in :55.2, Gingras sent Father Patrick up to challenge the pacesetter, took over before the three-quarters was reached in 1:24, then powered home for the win in 1:52.4. E L Titan came on for second, with Harper Blue Chip third. Owned by the Father Patrick Stable, of which Torontonian John Fielding is a partner, Father Patrick had won 15 straight prior to his gaffe in the Hambletonian. Since then, he'd won two of three and was hammered down to heavy favouritism in the Classic. "It's definitely huge (winning the Canadian Trotting Classic)," said Gingras. "That race (Hambletonian) is one I'd like to forget. He's a great horse. From here on out, I think he'll be the best horse, no doubt. He went a huge trip. He was out the whole way, never saw the rail. When I made my move, it was never in doubt." Added Fielding, "It was just a fantastic effort tonight. We've always thought this colt was the best colt I've ever owned. Jimmy, his wife Christina and myself have owned many, many great horses over the years. But this colt ranks up as probably number one of all of them. It was disappointing at the Hambletonian but tonight he was fantastic. It was just a great thrill. Tonight he showed himself well." With the win, Father Patrick went well over the $1 million in earnings for the season and is now closing in on the $2 million mark in career earnings. Prior to tonight, six of the last 10 winners of the Canadian Trotting Classic, including the last two (Royalty For Life in 2013, Market Share in 2012) had also prevailed in the storied Hambletonian. Takter previously won the Classic on two occasions, but surprisingly it had been awhile. Kadabra took the 2002 edition while Red Xing won in 1997. Father Patrick paid $2.70, $2.10 (no show wagering), combining with E L Titan ($14.60) for a $45.80 (6-1) exactor. A 6-1-2 (Harper Blue Chip) triactor was worth $158.10 while a $1 Superfecta [6-1-2-7 (Damfoolrmillioinair)] came back $282.20. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, September 13 - Shake It Cerry, driven by Ron Pierce, destroyed nine harness racing rivals in the $409,000 Elegantimage Stakes Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack. A daughter of Donato Hanover - Solveig, Shake It Cerry continued her sensational season Saturday evening with arguably her best performance to date. Sent off as the 4/5 favourite, Shake It Cerry was parked around the first turn in fourth and eventually would clear to the front as the field approached the half-mile pole. After reaching the three-quarter pole in 1:24.3, Shake It Cerry found another gear and opened up on the field under a hand drive from Pierce. Trained by Jimmy Takter, Shake It Cerry cruised to a 9¼ length victory in a Track, Stakes and Canadian record equaling time of 1:52.1. "I asked her to go a little bit turning for home and she responded well and was just full of trot," said Pierce following the race. "I never turned the whip around, I never pulled her ear plugs, I just sat there, I was just a passenger. Jimmy had her tuned up and I just had to sit there." Takter's other starter in the Elegantimage final, Scream And Shout, finished second in a photograph over Vanity Matters. Shake It Cerry has now won nine of her eleven starts this season and 17 of 21 career appearances. Following the race, Takter had high praise for his star trotting filly. "I always said this is the best three-year-old filly in this crop," said Takter. "Lifetime Pursuit is quite good too, but I know with this filly she had a tough run in the Hambletonian (Oaks), but she is just a fantastic horse and bounces back every time and I think she's earned all the respect she can get." Owned by Solveig Racing Partners, Shake It Cerry increased her career earnings to $1,427,880 with her victory Saturday night. She paid $3.60 to win. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, September 13 - Habitat, driven by Yannick Gingras, wired his nine harness racing rivals to take the $390,000 William Wellwood Memorial final by a widening six and three-quarter lengths, Saturday at Mohawk Racetrack. On a night when the trotting stars of tomorrow shared the spotlight with the star trotters of today, Habitat announced his presence as a possible future champion. The 8-5 second choice went immediately to the front from the six-hole, chased by the 3-5 favourite Uncle Lasse, who suddenly made a break. After getting the opening quarter in 28 seconds flat, Habitat continued to motor along, reaching the half in :57.2 before sprinting away from his foes around the far turn. After three-quarters in 1:26.1, the two-year-old son of Conway Hall-Habits Best was five lengths in front and drew off for the impressive score in 1:54.2, his fourth win in seven starts for trainer and co-owner Ron Burke. Last week, he'd finished second to Uncle Lasse in one of the Wellwood elims, but when the favourite broke stride early, his main foe was eliminated. "My horse is really handy," said Gingras. "I knew the horse to beat was Uncle Lasse. Actually, I didn't realize that he run (broke stride). I've really liked him from the get-go. He's very well-mannered, good-gaited and does everything right, a real nice two-year-old." Last year, Father Patrick flashed his talent when romping in the Wellwood en route to divisional honours. He was also the heavy favourite in this year's Hambletonian but made an early break. Father Patrick was scheduled to race later Saturday night in the rich Canadian Trotting Classic. Habitat paid $5.20, $3.50 and $2.90, combining with longshot Jetpedia ($13.60, $7.60) for a $99.80 (6-7) exactor. A 6-7-8 (Southwind Stryker, $7.80) triactor was worth a huge $1,156.30, while a $1 Superfecta [6-7-8-10 (Big Rich)] came back a whopping $8,001.50. Jeff Timson - WEG Communications

CAMPBELLVILLE, September 13 - The Peaceful Way Stakes Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack was 'As easy as 1-2-3' for harness racing trainer John Bax. The Bax trainee Stubborn Belle and driver Paul Macdonell captured the $385,000 final, while Juanitas Fury and Southwind Champane took the place and show spot to make it a 'Bax Triactor'. The entire complexion of the rich final changed before the field could even reach the eighth pole when Mission Brief, the 1/5 favourite, made a break. The costly break by the favourite allowed Stubborn Belle and driver Paul Macdonell to step out to the lead and control the tempo. After posting fractions of :28.1, :57.2 and 1:26.2, Stubborn Belle dug in down the stretch to hold off a late charge from stablemate Juanitas Fury to win the Peaceful Way Stakes by half a length in 1:56. The other Bax trainee, Southwind Champane, was able to get up for third to complete the first-ever 1-2-3 finish for a trainer in Peaceful Way Stakes history. Stubborn Belle's victory also gives Bax and MacDonell back-to-back Peaceful Way crowns after the duo teamed up to win last year's edition with Riveting Rosie. "My hat has to go off to John Bax here," said MacDonell. "To come in 1-2-3, I know we were up against Mission Brief and we knew we were up against it, but he had these horses prepared and ready to go tonight." Bax has now won three Peaceful Way Stakes titles. His first victory came in 2002, when the race was known as the Oakville Stakes, with Aimees Image. MacDonell praised Bax for his touch with trotters. "He's just a perfect guy with a trotter, he's relaxed, he doesn't get anxious and worried about how they are coming along at any time of the year. He knows things will fall into place and my hats off to him." The costly break by Mission Brief not only stung for her connections, but the horseplayers who bet almost $18,000 of the $26,377 in the Win pool and the $33,581 of the $41,991 in the Show pool on her. "I didn't expect it, but you have to think about it because if she was going to get beat she was likely going to beat herself," said MacDonell of the break by Mission Brief. "I'm upset for those people, she's still a great filly, but we had to take advantage of it when the time came." Stubborn Belle, who finished second to Mission Brief in their elimination, has now won four of her eight career starts. The daughter of Taurus Dream - Musetta Hanover is owned by Al Libfeld and Parkhill Stud Farm and now has a bankroll of $308,786. Stubborn Belle paid $19.50 to win. The Peaceful Way Stakes Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, September 13 - On an evening when the trotters had the spotlight, the sport's best older pacing mares contested two eliminations for next Saturday's $286,000 Milton Stakes. 16 of the finest pacing mares were split into two $35,000 eliminations. In the first elimination, Krispy Apple and Tim Tetrick converted off a two-hole trip to win in 1:50.3. Trained by P.J. Fraley, Kripsy Apple started her season 0 for 16 before picking up a victory in her most recent start at Philadelphia. Saturday evening, the six-year-old daughter of Western Ideal proved that victory was no fluke with a length victory in her Milton Stakes elimination. The Ron Burke trained Summertime Lea and Camille finished second and third, while Aunt Caroline and Monkey On My Wheel secured the final two spots into next week's final. Owned by Bamond Racing LLC and Joseph Davino, the Milton 'elim' was the 26th victory of Krispy Apple's career and added to her more than $1.1 million career bankroll. She paid $6.70 to win. Krispy Apple In the second elimination, Yagonnakissmeornot split horses to prevail by a narrow margin over Shelliscape in 1:51.1. A hot early battle between Voelz Hanover, Yagonnakissmeornot and Rocklamation got the field to the opening quarter in :25.4. Voelz Hanover would eventually come away with the lead, but not long after Tim Tetrick would fire up Anndrovette and send her to the lead. After the reaching the three-quarter pole in 1:22.4, Anndrovette led the field into the stretch and would be quickly confronted by Voelz Hanover from out of the two-hole. Yagonnakissmeornot, who was third along the rail at the three-quarter pole, would make a charge to the outside of Voelz Hanover, while Shelliscape was on the far outside taking her best shot. At the wire, Yagonnakissmeornot held off Shelliscape by a head, while Anndrovette finished third ahead of Voelz Hanover in fourth. Charisma Hanover finished fifth to lock up the final spot in next week's final. Trained by Rene Allard, Yagonnakissmeornot has now won ten of 23 starts this year and 24 in her career. A five-year-old daughter of The Panderosa, Yagonnakissmeornot has career earnings of more than $630,000 and is owned by Allard Racing Inc, Yves Sarrazin and Kapildeo Singh. She paid $8.50 to win. Yagonnakissmeornot Following the eliminations, the post position drew took place for next week's $286,000 final. Elimination winners earned the right to select their post. Here is how they will lineup next week. PP/Horse/Driver 1. Monkey On My Wheel - Chris Christoforou 2. Yagonnakissmeornot - Jody Jamieson 3. Krispy Apple - Tim Tetrick 4. Camille - Yannick Gingras 5. Shelliscape - Scott Zeron 6. Voelz Hanover - Randy Waples 7. Anndrovette - Tim Tetrick 8. Aunt Caroline - Ron Pierce 9. Summertime Lea - Sylvain Filion 10. Charisma Hanover - Doug McNair AE: Ferrari Sena - Sylvain Filion Mark McKelvie

An enthusiastic harness racing crowd braved the cold and rainy weather at Hanover Raceway Saturday night. The staff from CKNX, 101.7 The One and 94.5 Classic rock brought with them a 50 inch Smart TV and blue ray player and the winner was Dave Middleton of Port Elgin. Middleton was on hand as part of a 40 person group from Sun Life in Hanover and Owen Sound. The group enjoyed an afternoon BBQ with their families and stayed around for the evening harness races. On the track, a pair of drivers picked up Hat-tricks. Bruce Richardson who leads all dash winning drivers with 29 wins started off the hat-trick winning race 4 with Emerald Echo in 2:05 for owners Dayle McFadden of Ayton and Lynne McFadden of Barrie. The Arthur native won the very next race with The Voice in 2:05.1 which he shares ownership on with Joe Coffey of Orangeville and Terry Oneil of Arthur. Richardson capped off the night with his final win in Race 9 driving Adventure Luck to victory in 1:59.1 for owner Bruce Winning of Madoc. House meanwhile started off his winning streak in Race 3 with American Grace in 2:01.2 for the Kevin Mcmaster stables of Guelph. Win number 2 was in race 6 with Serious Fool in 1:59.4 for owner Robert Daer of Goderich and House capped the hat-trick in the nightcap with Sandburg Hanover for the Kevin Mcmaster stables of Guelph. Hanover Raceway also held Horse Racing Bingo for the first time, and unfortunately no one in the crowd filled out a full bingo card. Because of that, Hanover Raceway is going to play BINGO again next Saturday for the first 250 people who are 18 and over at the program information booth. Post time next Saturday night is 7:15pm. Gord Dougan

The Battlin' Billings Boys made their annual trip north of the border to compete in Canada and race on Prince Edward Island at Charlottetown Driving Park on Saturday,(Sept. 6) and at Summerside Raceway the following afternoon. Eight members were to make the trip but when "Bullet Bob" Davis had to cancel, the group leader and Billings vice president, Steve "You're Never Too" Oldford, contacted local amateur and Charlottetown resident, Todd Walsh, to fill in for Davis. And Walsh made the best of his chances, winning a Billings contest at both Maritime racetracks. But even though Todd "the substitute" Walsh copped a pair that still left room for two others who made the journey to have their pictures taken in the winner's circle. Mike "the Mortgage Man" Mitchell was one and "Racin' Jason" Sgrignuoli the other. The first contest at Charlottetown on Saturday went to Walsh when he sat back off the leaders and then closed with a rush to score an easy 2:01.2 victory with the veteran Bettors Delight pacing gelding, Blue Man Group. Also coming from off the pace was second place finisher TMS Starlet Cruise, capably handled by "Mighty Matt" Zuccarello. Third place went to Wine To Go, driven by Hilliard Graves, the retired professional hockey player. Graves appeared in 556 games in the National Hockey League from a 1970-1980 with the Vancouver Canucks, the Atlanta Flames, the Winnipeg Jets and the California Golden Seals. And like many other Canadian- born hockey players where hockey and harness racing are national sports in their country, Graves has been involved in harness racing, for most of his adult life and thus far he has won 265 races. Oldford, and the other Billings members, were very pleased to have Graves fill in for one the absent members. The second contest there saw "the Mortgage Man" take advantage of sizzling early fractions then rally Sumbodys Fool to collar Forced To Travel and Steve Oldford in the final strides to score a neck victory a time of 1:59.2. Hilliard Graves drove the third place finisher in that contest, also. On Sunday (Sept. 7) at Summerside Raceway, Walsh was back in the winners circle after winning the first Billings contest there with In Cahoots in a time of 2:01.3. They finished 1-1/2 length s ahead of Bizzy Izzy driven by Daniel "Handy Dan" St. Pierre. Matt Zuccarello took home the show dough with Incredible Mike. A final Billings race went to All Out, who seemed to be all-out from gate to wire to score a two length triumph in a time of 1:59 triumph for "Racin' Jason" Sgrignuoli. Zuccarello was second with Jamantha while Todd Walsh finished third with Woodmere No Fool. "We got to the lead easily and we never had a serious challenge in the race ," Sgrignuoli said. "At the finish my horse still had a lot left and the owners (Dale and Ronnie Rennie) were very happy. I was too. " Later all the Billings drivers, and even some of ( the PEI) horsemen, got together and celebrated with a nice dinner." The next day, when all the Billings participants were at the airport and were readying for the trip back home, Steve Oldford, who has been the driving force behind this international amateur completion, had nothing but compliments for their Canadian hosts. "I can't say enough good things about the hospitality we are shown when we come here," Oldford said. "Every one invites us to stop by their barns and 'have a beverage or two'. No one tells us how to drive their horses; all they say to us is 'have fun-be safe'. "We enjoy every moment when we are with our PEI friends and we look forward to a return trip again next year. by John Manzi, for the Billings Amateur Driver Series

CAMPBELLVILLE, September 1 - Due to unsafe track conditions harness racing was cancelled Monday night at Mohawk Racetrack following the evening's ninth race. A heavy downpour of rain midway through the 12-race card caused the track surface, which started the night listed as 'Fast', to be downgraded to 'Sloppy'. Following the ninth race, the Ontario Racing Commission judges and officials from the Woodbine Entertainment Group ruled the track to be unsafe to continue racing action and cancelled the remaining three races. The final Ontario Sires Stakes Grassroots division for three-year-old trotting colts and geldings, which was carded as Race 10, will take place tomorrow evening (Tuesday, September 2) at 7 p.m. and will be contested as a non-wagering race. Following the non-wagering event, an 11-race card will take place with a regular post time of 7:25 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 30 - On Saturday evening's 12-race program at Mohawk, Woodbine Entertainment Group offered a mandatory payout on the Jackpot Hi 5. Over the past few months, a carryover has been building since there has not been just one winning ticket on a Jackpot Hi-5 wager. When there is more than one winning ticket, 50% of the pool is carried over to the next card. As of a result of the carryovers, $647,331 was carried over into Saturday's Canadian Pacing Derby/Metro Pace program. Scheduled as the last dash of the evening, the Jackpot Hi 5 attracted an additional $2,026,548, giving the pool a total of $2,673,879. The result was a payout of $6,736.80 on a $1 wager ($1,347.36 on a $.20 cent wager) after Resistance Futile found the wire first in 1:49.1 at odds of 8/5. The top five finishers are as follows: 1. Resistance Futile 2. American Gi 3. Apprentice Hanover 4. Michaels Power 5. Cobble Beach The Jackpot Hi-5 requires horseplayers to select the first five finishers in exact order on the last race of the program. The wager, which offered 20-cent minimum, also had a takeout of 15 per cent, a continent-equaling low.​ by Mark McKelvie, for WEG  

ELORA, ON - In just his sixth year as a professional driver, James MacDonald of Guelph ranks among the best in Canada. He sits second in the nation in wins, is a close third in money and is on the verge of surpassing his best money year ever, the $2.9 million he earned in 2012. One of his biggest career victories came earlier this month when he won the Battle of the Belles at Grand River Raceway with a 20-1 longshot named Win The Gold. "I've had a lot of good horses and a lot of good trainers use me, so that makes it easier." MacDonald is on an incredible roll in 2014. He kicked off the year getting married to Jenna MacDonell. Jenna is the daughter of veteran reinsman Paul Macdonell, the man best known for driving the incredible Somebeachsomewhere. "Paul's great and Jenna's even better," MacDonald said, laughing. A few months after getting married, James MacDonald surpassed $10 million in lifetime earnings and recorded his 1,000th career win. "It means quite a bit. I've been watching it for awhile," MacDonald said of the wins milestone. "You try and win as much as you can, but it's hard. There's nine, 10 people in every race trying to win and in Ontario it's not easy to win races. There are so many good drivers around. Just to know that you've been able to achieve 1,000 is kind of special." James is the third MacDonald brother to reach the upper echelons of the sport. James, Anthony and Mark MacDonald have won more than 9,000 races and $100 million combined. Mark MacDonald is a two-time Canadian driver of the year. James said it all starts with their parents, Fred and Gail MacDonald, back in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. "Our family's great. Dad and mom, they watch every race and they call after," James said. "Whether you're up the track or win, you're the best driver in the world. They're great and Mark and Anthony they're great, too. All our brothers. They all watch, they all call. "Mark, if he sees me do something, or Anthony sees me do something they're the first people to give good constructive criticism, so it makes it that much easier, for sure." Constructive? Brothers are able to do constructive? "Somewhat. It starts off as constructive and usually ends up in a fight," James said, laughing. "But, deep down I know it was meant well." James said the Ontario track that most reminds him of home is Grand River Raceway in Elora. "It's a great track to race at. The grandstand sits right on the track. The fans are lined up at the fence to watch. It's just a really friendly place to race at." To hear our conversation with James MacDonald - including what sport he beats his brothers at every time - check out our weekly podcast, the Harness Racing Report, produced for Grand River Raceway by award-winning journalist Dave Briggs, at https://soundcloud.com/grandriverraceway by Dave Briggs for Grand River Raceway  

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 18 - On Monday evening, harness racing driver Doug McNair recorded his 2,000 career driving victory at Mohawk Racetrack with the three-year-old pacer Eastender. McNair, a resident of Guelph, Ontario, entered the evening two wins away from reaching the 2,000 win plateau. In the evening's third race, McNair picked up his 1,999th victory with Youre Majestic in a $70,000 Ontario Sires Stakes Gold event for two-year-old trotting fillies. McNair would then reach the milestone in the final race of the night with the three-year-old gelding, Eastender, who is trained by his father Gregg. Over the last few years, McNair has been consistently among the top drivers on the WEG circuit and has quickly become one of the top young reinsman in the entire sport. At the age of 18, Doug became the youngest driver in the history of harness racing to reach $1 million in career earnings In December of 2010, McNair became the youngest driver to reach 1,000 wins, reaching the milestone at Western Fair Raceway just weeks before his 21st birthday. This season, Doug is sixth in the WEG driver's standings with 90 wins and over $1.6 million in earnings. In total this season, McNair has made 129 trips to the winner's circle and has earnings exceeding $2.4 million. In his young career, Doug has competed in and won many of the sport's top events. Races such as the Battle of Waterloo, Confederation Cup and She's A Great Lady are just some of the major stakes victories on McNair's resume. Just this past Saturday night, McNair recorded a Grand Circuit driving victory at Mohawk by steering Solar Sister to victory in the $77,745 Eternal Camnation Stakes. McNair is currently in his seventh full season of driving and in that time period has career earnings of just less than $27 million. Doug reaches the 2,000 win mark at the age of 24. The Woodbine Entertainment Group would like to congratulate Doug on the accomplishment and wish him continued success on his journey to 3,000 wins. Mark McKelvie

August 17, 2014 - M G Idole has found a new favourite harness racing track…Dresden Raceway. The six-year-old Million Dollar Cam mare won her fourth in a row at the Southwestern Ontario half mile track. Nick Steward, Dresden’s leading dash driver made his move early and made the front just after the quarter and never looked back pacing by the half in 1:00.4, three quarters in 1:30.1 before stepping off a last quarter in 29.1 for the victory in 1:59.2. Todd Kennedy of McGregor is the owner and trainer. Dresden continues to be a success story after an 11th hour drive to keep the doors open. Fans were treated to 200 dozen ears fresh, hot buttered corn on the cob today as well as several giveaways of pizza, prizes and t-shirts. Today’s handle was $21, 425 which is an increase of 111% over last year on the same date. Overall on the season wagering is up 74% over the same dates last year. TRACK TIDBITS…TRIPLE THREAT…Nick Steward and Alfie Carroll each picked up three winners on the day… DASHING YOUNG MAN…Steward is the leading Dash Winner at Dresden with 22 wins in eight days… JUNIOR SPEED...JUNIOR PRIDE was the fastest horse of the day pacing the mile in 1:57 flat… SHOW ME THE MONEY…The largest payout of the day was the 4-7-9 combination in the third race paying $602.00 Gary Patterson   

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 15 - Hope For Paddy pulled off a large 35-1 upset in the Fillies and Mares Preferred pace Friday night at Mohawk. A field of seven harness racing mares, highlighted by the 2014 debut of last year's three-year-old pacing filly of the year I Luv The Nitelife, lined up for the $30,000 feature race. I Luv The Nitelife, who has been sidelined since last November with a knee fracture, was sent straight to the lead by driver Jack Moiseyev and got to call the shots throughout the mile. After setting fractions of :26.4, :54.4 and 1:23.3, I Luv The Nitelife was confronted at the three-quarter pole by the first up challenge of Hope For Paddy and driver James MacDonald. In the stretch, Hope For Paddy overtook the lead from I Luv The Nitelife and held off second place finisher American In Paris, who was towed around the final turn second over, and third place finisher Voelz Hanover, who got a two-hole trip behind I Luv The Nitelife, to pick up the victory in 1:50.4. I Luv The Nitelife faded back finishing fifth, while D Gs Pesquero rounded out the Superfecta in fourth. A five-year-old daughter of Mach Three - Hope For Life, the Preferred upset was the sixth win in 22 starts this season for Hope For Paddy and it was her first career victory at the Preferred level. Hope For Paddy is trained by Anthony Montini for owners Holland Racing Stable of Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario. Hope For Paddy's seasonal earnings increase to over $81,000 with the victory and her career earnings now sit at over $363,000. The Preferred score was Hope For Paddy's 23rd career visit to the winner's circle. She returned an eye-catching $80.30 to win. Live racing continues tomorrow night at Mohawk with a 13-race card beginning at 7:25 p.m. Tomorrow night's card features three divisions of both the Nassagaweya and Eternal Camnation Stakes. Mark McKelvie

It's finally here, the one day a year that racing fans around the world gather at Red Shores Charlottetown for one of the greatest shows in harness racing, The Sobey's Gold Cup and Saucer. With fans lined along the fence and not an empty seat in the house, the fastest and richest Gold Cup and Saucer will be contested for a purse of $ 75,000. To most it's not a lot of money, but to the people trying to win it, it's not about the money.   It's about the show.   When the lights go down on Saturday night, the only thing to be seen is the Farris Wheel in the distance, but once that spot light picks up the first starter, Wazzup Wazzup, Saturday night, not a single person at Red Shores Charlottetown will be sitting, and every person will have chill roll down their spine as track announcer Vance Cameron rhymes off every horse, driver and trainers credentials.   Leaving from Post 1 is the six-year-old son of Life Sign, a winner of 21 races lifetime and a lifetime record of 1:49 taken two starts ago at Mohawk, He is owned by the Rolling Hill Racing Stable of Ontario. Trainer Corey Johnson will look to follow in his father Colin's footsteps and take home his first Gold Cup and Saucer trophy. James MacDonald, an Island native of P.E.I. will return home in hopes of making his boyhood dream of winning the Gold Cup and Saucer a reality. Wazzup Wazzup was a fourth place finisher after a break passing the five-eights in his trial.   Trial 2 winner Aracache Hanover has drawn into post 2. The richest horse in this year's field, he has over $1.7 million in career earnings. He is owned by William Switala and James Martin of New York. Trainer Ron Burke is back to defend his title from last year when he set the track record with Escape The News in 1:50.4. He will entrust in the Maritimes leading driver Marc Campbell, as he looks to make it back-to-back Gold Cup and Saucers. 'King Campbell' will look to do so after sweeping both trials this year.   Post 3 starter is one of three entries from the Rene Allard stable, a winner two back in a lifetime best 1:48.3, Bigtown Hero will be upset minded on Saturday night for his owners Allard Racing and Yves Sarrazin of Quebec. Newfoundland native Brad Forward has been given the catch-driving call on the six-year-old son of American Ideal. Bigtown Hero finished second to Aracache Hanover in his trial.   Chris Oakes will look to make his first trip to red soil a successful one. He has two entries in this year's final, Scott Rocks, has drawn post 4. The four-year-old Rocknroll Hanover gelding has a lifetime record of 1:48.3, and has 12 wins in only two seasons of racing. He is owned by Susan Oakes and Chuck Pompey of Pennsylvania, Jonathan Drury has been here the last two year's looking to win his first Cup and Saucer, he will do the driving. Scott Rocks finished third in his trial pacing a mile in 1:52.   Island Jet, a winner of 14 races lifetime and just shy of $150 ,000 in career earnings has been saddled with post 5. The four-year-old son of Jeremes Jet is the second entry from the Allard barn. He is owned by Allard Racing, Maurice Lemieux of Quebec, Kapildeo Singh of New York and Howard Taylor of Pennsylvania. Another Island native, Robert Shepherd, will look to make his boyhood dream become reality when he reunites with his third place finished from Trial 1.   The second entrant from the Burke Brigade, Take It Back Terry has a lifetime record of 1:50 and over $380,000 on his resume. He is owned by the Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi, Lawrence Karr and Phillip Collura, He will pick up the driving services of the 'Maritime Magic Man' Gilles Barrieau, as he looks to move into soul possession of second place for most Gold Cup and Saucer wins as a driver, winning Saturday night would give him 4. 'Terry' finished second in his trial 2 appearance.   Hauser Bros Racing, Susan Oakes, Timothy Cable and Charles Oakes will place their faith in the seven-entry Shock It To Em. A four-year-old son of Western Terror, he has 15 lifetime victories and a record of 1:49 taken earlier this season. Trained by Chris Oakes he will hand the lines to the veteran driver of the field, Island native Walter Cheverie. He was a third place finisher in Trial 1 last Saturday night.   The trial two winner and now co-track record holder Mickey Hanover has drawn the dreaded outside post 8. A winner in 1:50.4 on Monday, he tied Escape The News' track record from last year. Owned by Allard Racing, Yves Sarrazin and Daniel Dubé, he has a lifetime mark of 1:49.1 and over $ 350, 000 lifetime. Allard has been coming to P.E.I. since 2009 trying to win the prestigious Gold Cup and Saucer trophy, after his trial 2 victory Allard said each year he keeps getting closer and closer. A winner of the Meadowlands Pace, Little Brown Jug and North American Cup, co-owner Daniel Dubé will travel to P.E.I. hoping to add a Gold Cup and Saucer to his long list of achievements.   On Paper, if everything sets up right a track record is quite possible, but only one thing is for sure heading into Saturday night, Red Shores' Charlottetown is the place to be. The Gold Cup and Saucer is featured in the Race 14 finale.   Open Mares - Premiers Pace headline Cup and Saucer undercard   Nine of the best mares that the Maritimes have to offer will line up in Race 13 to contest for the $ 12,250 Spud Island Classic sponsored by the PEI Potato Board.   Winning both legs of the series, Russian Kisses has drawn post 2 in the final, a four-year-old daughter of Badlands Hanover she is owned by Robert Shepherd, Joseph Travis and Forrest Bartlett, Robert will do the driving for his trainer Harold Shepherd. She was a winner in leg one in 1:55 and followed that up with a 1:56.3 score for driver Steven Shepherd.   A winner in Leg 1 Stayoutofmyaffiar has drawn post 6 for owner Robi Hughes, Last year's Atlantic Aged Mare Champion won her first leg in 1:55.1 and then followed it up with a second place finish pacing in 1:57.2. Jason Hughes does the training and driving.   Last year's Spud Island Classic winner, Dirt Track Momma is back to defend her title from Post 4. The six-year-old E Dees Cam mare is owned and trained by Jonah Moase, she finished second in the second leg to secure her spot in the final. Marc Campbell will do the driving. Moase will also send out the nine-horse trailer Silky Brithces, also a second place finisher in the second leg, Dale Spence will do the driving   Two-time Spud Island Classic champion made it four years in a row that she has won a leg of the series when she won her second leg in 1:57.1., General Luckypercy is owned by Jodi Lynn Matheson and Jack Brown, a mainstay in the open mares ranks for the last four years, she is trained by Jackie Matheson. Saturday night she will get the services of Daniel Dubé from Post 3. Her stablemate and this years Lobsterfest winner For All We Know draws post 7 for owner Bruce Wood, a winner in leg 2 in 1:56.2 For All We Know comes in with a no worst then second record in her last 5, The Matheson- Gilles Barrieau connection will hook up to try and get her into the winner circle.   Ultimate Faith has put together some stellar numbers this season and seems to have made the jump into the open mare ranks this season, a winner in leg 1, Ultimate Faith is owned by Abel Arsenault, Philip Desroches does the training on the seven-year-old daughter of N Xample. Mike Stevenson will do the driving from Post 5.   National Driving Championship finalist Ryan Ellis has drawn the rail with his own trainee Icandothat for owner Danica Ellis, the four-year-old No Pan Intended mare finished third in both of legs of the series. The outside post 8 goes to another open mare mainstay over the past four years, J K Special, A second place finisher in the first leg for owner - trainer Joe Smallwood, driver Walter Cheverie will look to get the ball rolling before his Gold Cup and Saucer drive in the finale.   The race 12 Premiers Pace final plays host to the best free-for-all horses the Maritimes have to offer.   A pair of winners in both legs of the Premiers Pace series will hook up and do battle, side-by-side.   Post 3 starter D Gs Camme heads into Saturday night, hot as a fire cracker. He has picked up victories in his last three, including a 1:53 victory setting a new track record at Red Shores' Summerside in the Governor's Plate. He followed that up with a 1:53.4 score in the first leg of the series at Summerside and then a 1:55.3 win by three lengths. The four-year-old son of Blissfull Hall is owned by Quentin and Hal Bevan, Tom Clark and Ronnie Matheson, Jackie Matheson handles the training duties and will hand the lines over to Barrieau for the fifth consecutive week.   From post 4 is the six-year-old son of Camluck, owned by the Ultimate Stable, after drawing 6,6,6,8 and 6 in his last five, Ultimate Luck has finally lucked out at the draw. A winner of two-in-a-row for trainer Sifroi Melanson. He picked up both victories in the Premiers Pace series, the first coming in leg one in 1:55 and then in 1:55.2 last week. Terry Gallant did the driving in both starts and will be back in the bike again to try and extend the streak to three.   Red Rock has drawn the coveted rail in the $15, 000 final, a new edition for the ownership group of Donald, Brian and Steven MacRae and Melissa Trainor, the red horse has four starts on red soil and five on maritime soil, in those five starts he hasn't missed a cheque and missed the top three only one time. The 'Blue Knight' Jason Hughes does the training and driving. Modern Xhibit, Schooner, Judge Jon, Cheyenne Ford and Machinthesand round out the field.   Two Gold divisions of the Joe O'Brien for three-year-old pacing colts go in Races 3 and 5. Settlement Request has been enrolled as the morning line favourite from Post 3 in Race 3. Owned by Alfred Barrieau and Michael Clinton, Gilles Barrieau does the training and driving. The son of Coasttocoast Yankee will look to push his bankroll well over $40,000 with a victory in the $11,000 race. Island Gigolo, J Ps Warrior, Dumas Walker, Rebelseven and Wine To Go complete the field.   A pair of Atlantic Sire Stakes 'A' division winners from Monday will hook up and do battle in the fifth race. Arties Magic, Post 4, gets the slight advantage in post position for owners Windemere Farms and Clive Balderston. Earl Watts trains the son of Articulator and Todd Trites will drive. Tobins Fusion is the other winner from Monday, he draws Post 5 for the Boyd Macdonald Produce LTD and Dan Ross. Barrieau handles both the training and driving duties on the son of Western Paradise.   Say It Again Sam will put his double digit win streak on the line in the race 11 Norman MacPhail Memorial pace. Undefeated this season, the three-year-old Well Said gelding has been untouchable since coming to the Maritimes. He is owned by Foxyhall Racing, and Jason Hughes does the training and driving. Eagle Jolt, Junebugs Baby, Kass Hall, Pan Larceny and Dance Hanover will look to halt the streak at 10.   Reminder to race fans that racing action gets underway at 6:45 p.m. Bo Ford

The third time's a charm for The Art Museum. At least that's how it's shaping up for the harness racing pacing broodmare. Her third foal is Artspeak, who has started his career with three consecutive wins, including the New Jersey Sire Stakes championship. Artspeak, a son of stallion Western Ideal, races in the third of three Nassagaweya Stakes divisions for 2-year-old pacers Saturday at Mohawk Racetrack in Ontario. He heads to Canada off a 2-1/2 length win in 1:50.4 in a conditioned race Aug. 1 at the Meadowlands. No 2-year-old pacer has gone faster this season. "The mare's been knocking on the door and maybe this is the one that's going to make her a little more prolific," said Tony Alagna, who trains Artspeak. "It's too early to tell, but he's done everything we asked him to do so far. Now he'll go from the Jersey breds to open company, but he was very good in his last start at the Meadowlands. Saturday night we'll know more." Alagna is quite familiar with The Art Museum and her racing-aged offspring. The Art Museum was in the stable of trainer Erv Miller, where Alagna worked prior to starting his own barn, but never made it to the races because of an injury. Yet she made an impression. "She was a great gaited mare with a great pedigree and I had a feeling at some point she was going to throw something decent," Alagna said. "The first two foals were close, but not what this one has been. He seems like he'll be the best one the mare's had so far." The Art Museum's first foal, the filly Acquavella, at age 2 won a division of the New Jersey Sire Stakes and finished second in a division of the Reynolds Memorial, but struggled with health issues. Her second foal, the now 3-year-old colt Fort Knox, last season finished second to Luck Be Withyou in a Champlain Stakes division and has earned $65,241. "Acquavella was meant to be a top filly," Alagna said. "She had some health problems and never reached her full potential. I thought she was meant to be a really good filly, so I went back the next year and bought Fort Knox. He's a nice horse, but just couldn't go to the next level. Artspeak looks like he's got all the tools to be a top horse." Purchased for $100,000 at the 2013 Lexington Selected Sale, Artspeak's family also includes 2007 Meadowlands Pace winner Southwind Lynx. Artspeak is owned by co-breeder Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco, and In The Gym Partners. Artspeak is the 4-5 morning line favorite in his division of the Nassagaweya, starting from post eight with driver Scott Zeron. His division includes Battle of Waterloo runner-up Sporting The Look, plus Some Power, Read The Proposal, and Pierce Hanover. Some Power sold for $270,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sale under the name Way Bay Hanover. His family includes Dan Patch Award winner Popcorn Penny and he is a half-brother to stakes-winners Westwardho Hanover and Woodstock Hanover. Read The Proposal is a full brother to stakes-winners Lucky Bettor, Bettor B Lucky, and Bet On Luck. Pierce Hanover is a full brother to stakes-winner Passmaster Hanover and top open performer Philos Hanover in addition to being a half-brother to stakes-winner Panther Hanover. Artspeak is among four horses from Alagna's stable competing in the Nassagaweya divisions. Edison -- whose family includes millionaires Delinquent Account, Artiscape, and Western Shore -- is in the first division while Trading Up and Rock On The Hill are in the second split. For many of the horses in the Nassagaweya, it is either a final prep for the upcoming Metro Pace at Mohawk, or an audition. "Myron Bell picked (Edison) out of the catalog because he's got a phenomenal pedigree and he's really started to come into himself his last couple starts," Alagna said, referring to co-owner Brittany Farms' racing manager. "Rock On The Hill was much improved his last start. I want to give him a shot to see if he's ready to go in the Metro, and if he's not, we'll skip it. But he's a horse on the improve. Trading Up was very sick his last start at The Meadows. He was loaded with mucous. We'll see if he fits in, as well. "It's a lot better to spend the $1,500 starting fee in the Nassagaweya to see how you fit compared to the starting fee in the Metro." The first Nassagaweya division also features Dream Maker Series champion The Wayfaring Man, as well as Late Night, who is a half-brother to millionaire Real Nice, and Asap Hanover, whose family includes multiple Dan Patch Award winner Eternal Camnation. Mohawk hosts a stakes event in Eternal Camnation's honor earlier on Saturday's card. Battle of Waterloo winner Go Daddy Go is in the second division, which also includes Badix Hanover, who is a full brother to millionaire Big Jim. Alagna also has three horses in Saturday's Eternal Camnation divisions for 2-year-old female pacers - Bedroomconfessions, Cashaway, and A Plus. In addition, two-time defending Pacer of the Year Captaintreacherous is in the preferred pace. Ken Weingartner Harness Racing Communications

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