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CAMPBELLVILLE, Ontario - September 18 - All eyes will be on Mission Brief in Saturday's Elegantimage Stakes, but Danielle Hall is slowly starting to find the stride that banked her over $500,000 as a two-year-old. The daughter of Deweycheatumnhowe will leave from post six in the $404,000 Elegantimage Stakes for Jody and Carl Jamieson. Last season, Danielle Hall won the $250,000 Ontario Sires Stakes Super Final and finished second in the $500,000 Breeders Crown. All signs pointed towards another strong year for the trotting filly, but a setback earlier this season slowed down the Jamieson trainee. "She qualified in (1):55 at the start of the year and just looked like a monster," said Jody Jamieson. "She hurt her knee somehow and then she was in Guelph for a longtime." Danielle Hall missed two months of racing after being scratched from an OSS Gold event on June 18. The Ontario Sired filly returned to the races on August 24 in a conditioned event, but made a break. However, the break would not be a sign of things to come, as Danielle Hall has recovered to put together three good starts since. In last week's Elegantimage elimination, Danielle Hall finished second over the 'Sloppy' track to Mission Brief, who won by 15 lengths and trotted in 1:54.1 over the track listed three-seconds off. "We were very happy to finish second and to get into the final," said Jamieson. "She's a work in progress; she's getting stronger and tighter all the time, but the trip Mission Brief went was a monstrosity, it was unbelievable." Danielle Hall was individually timed in 1:57.1 and Mission Brief's winning time was almost two-seconds faster than Muscle Baby Doll's 1:56 victory in the first elimination. "I looked at it compared to the other horses that raced in the other elimination and I think she's going to be competitive," said Jamieson. "I think we are all racing for second, hopefully we will be second, but if something happens and if she stays good and keeps progressing on she's got a shot to get good money for sure." Owned by Carl Jamieson and Thomas Kyron, Danielle Hall has missed each OSS Gold event this season, but a strong performance in the final Gold event on September 29 at Mohawk could earn her enough points to qualify for the Super Final. The daughter of Deweycheatumnhowe is also eligible to the Breeders Crown at Woodbine in October. While there is still plenty of money out there to be won, Danielle Hall could make up for the two-months she missed and grab a solid pay day Saturday. Jamieson is hopeful she can finish the year off strong. "She's a great mare, she tries her heart out all the time and just keeping our fingers crossed she stays good the rest of the year." By Mark McKelvie, for WEG Communications

Deweylovernleaver heads to Friday's eliminations for the William Wellwood Memorial for 2-year-old male trotters at Mohawk Racetrack with a three-race win streak, not to mention the admiration of trainer/co-owner Chris Beaver. "He could be as good as anything I've trained, from what I can tell right now," Beaver said. "He does it all very easy. He moves very easy; he's not pushing himself to do what he's doing. And he's very easy on himself in the barn. "He doesn't do anything wrong. He's a very complete horse all the way around." Deweylovernleaver, who has won three of five races for owners Beaver, Synerco Ventures Inc. and Leo Fleming, is in the first of two seven-horse Wellwood eliminations on Friday. He will be driven by Trevor Henry and is 9-1 on the morning line. Brooklyn Hill, who has finished second to Southwind Frank in three consecutive starts, including the Peter Haughton Memorial, is the 9-5 favorite in the division. David Miller will drive the colt for trainer Jonas Czernyson. Interestingly, Millstream Inc., which is Czernyson and his wife Christine, is the breeder of Deweylovernleaver. Southwind Frank is the 1-5 favorite in the second Wellwood elimination. He has won six of seven races this year for driver Yannick Gingras and trainer Ron Burke. Beaver-trained Smoke Monkey is also in the second division. He is 20-1. The top five finishers from each elimination advance to the C$373,000 final on Sept. 19 at Mohawk. Deweylovernleaver is a son of stallion Deweycheatumnhowe out of the mare Solovesick. Beaver bought the colt for $12,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sale. He finished third in his debut and fourth in his next start, when he was beaten by only a half-length despite racing on the outside for most of the mile. Since then, Deweylovernleaver has won three in a row on the Ontario Sire Stakes circuit. "He wasn't getting great trips his first few starts; Trevor was taking it easy with him off the gate," Beaver said. "He had a tendency to grab on a little bit, so he was teaching him to race off the pace. His last few races he's gotten right into it and had it his way." Deweylovernleaver, who has earned $88,046 in purses, was scratched from a division of the Champlain Stakes on Sept. 4 at Mohawk because of illness. "We didn't want to take a chance," Beaver said. Smoke Monkey, a son of Majestic Son out of the mare Nashotah, has two wins in seven starts and is owned by Synerco Ventures. He went off stride in two consecutive Ontario Sire Stakes races, but has since posted a win, two seconds and a third in four starts. He has earned $46,434 overall. "We had a little trouble with him going in a straight line," Beaver said about Smoke Monkey, who was purchased under the name Sal's Son for $9,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sale. "He was kind of a snaky horse, but very talented. I've got him rigged straight right now and he's staying off himself and trotting right now." Beaver was looking at a different yearling when he spotted Smoke Monkey at the sale. "I was looking at something and he walked by and caught my attention," Beaver said. "I watched his video and the video was really good. The dam hadn't produced anything yet, but I saw it was a different cross than the mare had seen before. I just liked the looks of him. I wouldn't say he's a fantastic looking horse, but he's better than average." In addition to the two Wellwood eliminations, Mohawk on Friday hosts two eliminations for the Elegantimage Stakes for 3-year-old female trotters. Mission Brief is the 1-5 morning line favorite in the second division, with Gingras driving for Burke, and Wild Honey is the 8-5 choice in the first division, with Gingras at the lines for trainer Jimmy Takter. The top five finishers from each elimination advance to the C$404,000 final on Sept. 19. Mission Brief, who finished second in the Hambletonian Stakes, has won five of seven races this year. Wild Honey has won four of nine races this season, including the Hambletonian Oaks. Beaver's Smokinmombo is 8-1 in the first elimination. A daughter of Explosive Matter-Horizontal Mombo, she won four of her first six starts this year before finishing fifth in her Hambletonian Oaks elimination and seventh in the final. She has a win and a third in three starts since then. "She was getting a little sore in a stifle, getting a little out of rhythm," Beaver said. "I think she lost her confidence a little bit. She's very sound now, but I had to snug the hobbles back tight on her to get her confidence back. It took her a few trainings and starts to have it come back together for her. "We drew pretty tough (Friday). Mission Brief isn't in there, but everything else is pretty good in that race." Following are the fields for the Wellwood eliminations in post order with drivers, trainers and morning line odds. Elimination One: 1. Deep Impact, Steve Condren, Brad Maxwell, 5-1; 2. Frankly Speaking, Randy Waples, Mark Steacy, 12-1; 3. Deweylovernleaver, Trevor Henry, Chris Beaver, 9-1; 4. Will Take Charge, James MacDonald, John Bax, 7-1; 5. Brooklyn Hill, David Miller, Jonas Czernyson, 9-5; 6. Tony Soprano, John Campbell, Bob McIntosh, 9-2; 7. Lean Hanover, Paul MacDonell, Mike Keeling, 3-1. Elimination Two: 1. Im A Mate, Don Dupont, Marie Dupont, 20-1; 2. Willyorwonthe, Mike Saftic, William Megens, 15-1; 3. Southwind Frank, Yannick Gingras, Ron Burke, 1-5; 4. Marion Marauder, John Campbell, Mike Keeling, 6-1; 5. Adored By Masses, Sylvain Filion, Erv Miller, 10-1; 6. Zlatan, Jimmy Takter, Jimmy Takter, 10-1; 7. Smoke Monkey, Trevor Henry, Chris Beaver, 20-1. Following are the fields for the Elegantimage eliminations in post order with drivers, trainers and morning line odds. Elimination One: 1. Wild Honey, Yannick Gingras, Jimmy Takter, 8-5; 2. Juanitas Fury, Paul MacDonell, John Bax, 15-1; 3. Tymal Illbthere, Mario Baillargeon, Ervin Abdulov, 20-1; 4. Gatka Hanover, Tim Tetrick, Ron Burke, 7-1; 5. Smokinmombo, Aaron Merriman, Chris Beaver, 8-1; 6. Elegant Serenity, Roger Mayotte, Roger Mayotte, 7-2; 7. Bee The Queen, John Campbell, George Ducharme, 15-1; 8. Muscle Baby Doll, Doug McNair, Tony O'Sullivan, 5-2. Elimination Two: 1. Mission Brief, Yannick Gingras, Ron Burke, 1-5; 2. Speak To Me, Jimmy Takter, Jimmy Takter, 5-1; 3. Danielle Hall, Jody Jamieson, Carl Jamieson, 10-1; 4. Magic Marker, Tim Tetrick, R. Nifty Norman, 15-1; 5. Stubborn Belle, Paul MacDonell, John Bax, 20-1; 6. Piscean, Jack Moiseyev, Clark Beelby, 20-1; 7. You're Majestic, Sylvain Filion, Tony O'Sullivan, 15-1; 8. Amoureuse Hanover, Mike Saftic, Brian Peterson, 20-1. Ken Weingartner 

SEPT. 8, 2015 - Magical Steph wrapped up the Grassroots regular season with a perfect harness racing record of four wins in four starts and heads into the Semi-finals off an impressive 1:56.4 score at Mohawk Racetrack on Tuesday evening. The two-year-old trotting filly and driver Steve Byron lined up behind Post 4 in the third Grassroots division and when the wings folded they went straight to the front. Rolling unchallenged through a :28 quarter and :58.4 half, the fan favourites shook off a challenge from Dayliner at the 1:28.1 three-quarters and sailed home to a five and one-half length win in a personal best 1:56.4. Pocket-sitter The Muscle Touch and challenger Dayliner finished second and third. "I was surprised how strong she was going to the wire, to tell you the truth," said Byron. "She did it on her own." The Thornton, ON resident has driven Magical Steph in all but one of her seven starts, guiding her to Grassroots victories over Grand River Raceway's half-mile oval on July 22, Georgian Downs's five-eighths mile oval on Aug. 8 and to a pair of wins over the seven-eighths mile surface at Mohawk, the first coming on July 30 and the second on Tuesday evening. In addition to her quartet of Grassroots wins, the Kadabra daughter won her elimination and finished second in the final of the Balanced Image Trot at Hanover Raceway on Aug. 22 and 29, and finished fourth in the first Gold Leg at Georgian Downs on July 12. "She's been a nice filly all year long, that's for sure," said Byron, who drives Magical Steph for trainer Gary Lance and GL Racing Inc. of Port Perry, ON. "They tried her in the first Gold at Georgian and she finished fourth, but he decided - she's a late foal and little on the small side - so he thought he'd go the Grassroots route. She's been pretty push button all summer." With her four-for-four record, Magical Steph leads the division point race with 200 and will be among the fillies to beat in the Sept. 17 Grassroots Semi-final. While her connections would prefer a favourable post, Byron has faith in the filly's versatility. She has won races from Posts 7, 8 and 9, with Tuesday's outing being the closest to the rail she has ever started in Ontario Sires Stakes action. "Obviously I'd sooner have a good post, but you know, she's pretty versatile," noted Byron. "That's the nice thing about her, she doesn't have to race on the front and she can race off cover just as well, I think. "She's a pretty nice filly," he added. Magical Steph The other Grassroots winners at Mohawk on Tuesday evening were Tymal Tempest, Myretirementticket, Jangone and Traviata. Tymal Tempest kicked things off in the first race, keeping a determined nose in front after a gritty trip in the outer lane. The Deweycheatumnhowe daughter and driver Phil Hudon of Guelph, ON stopped the teletimer at 1:59.2, holding off Tough Affair and Shes In Gear. It was the first win of the season for Tymal Tempest, who logged one second, one fourth and one sixth in her other three Grassroots appearances. The win boosted the filly's point total to 86 and moved her from thirty-fourth in the standings to thirteenth, causing trainer Erv Abdulov and owner Tymal Farms of Oldcastle, ON to add the Sept. 17 Semi-finals to their calendar. Tymal Tempest In the second division Myretirementticket moved one step closer to delivering on the promise of her name for trainer, owner and breeder Eli Wagler of Ingersoll, ON. First up on the outside for much of the mile, the Cornaro Dasolo filly accelerated down the stretch to a two and one-half length victory in a personal best 1:58. Majestic Presence and Windsongmusclelady finished second and third. Arthur, ON resident Trevor Henry engineered the win, Myretirementticket's second in Grassroots action. In five appearances the filly posted two wins, one second, one fourth and one sixth for a total of 136 points and a share of fifth spot in the standings. Myretirementticket Jangone and trainer-driver Riina Rekila of Campbellville romped to a seven length win in the fourth division, recording a lifetime best 1:58.3. Herbe A Loral and Majestic Diva battled into second and third. Rekila conditions the Johnny William filly for Overseas Farms Ltd. of Campbellville and guided Jangone to two wins, one second, one fourth, one seventh and one eighth in Grassroots action, accumulating 136 points. The filly heads into the Semi-final tied for fifth with Myretirementticket. Jangone Traviata captured the last Grassroots trophy of the evening with a late sprint that saw her get a head in front of fan favourite Powerful Glare at the wire. The battling leaders stopped the clock at 1:57.4, well ahead of third-place finisher Toss It Back. Trevor Henry made his second appearance of the evening in the Grassroots winner's circle; guiding Traviata to her second Grassroots win for trainer Richard "Nifty" Norman, Melvin Hartman of Ottawa, ON and Enzed Racing Stable Inc. of Allentown, NJ. The Kadabra daughter wrapped up her season with two wins, one second and one seventh for 127 points and sole ownership of seventh in the division standings. Traviata The two-year-old trotting fillies will return to Mohawk Racetrack on Thursday, Sept. 17 - along with the two-year-old trotting colts, pacing colts and pacing fillies - for their Grassroots Semi-finals, with the top five finishers from each Semi-final earning a return trip to the Campbellville oval for the Sept. 26 Grassroots Championships. Ontario Horse Racing

Nichols, N.Y. -- Fresh off her upset in the Earl Rowe Memorial at Georgian Downs nine days ago, Rockin With Dewey ($5.40, part of entry) once again sustained a first-over bid en route to victory, collaring harness racing millionaire Classic Martine in a $40,000 Miss Versatility preliminary event on Monday (September 7) afternoon at Tioga Downs.   Away last in the field of five, the 5-year-old daughter of Deweycheatumnhowe commenced her rally with a circuit to go, beginning to advance as 3-5 favourite Classic Martine (Matt Kakaley) cleared the lead. After a :56.3 half mile, Bob McClure turned up the pressure with Rockin With Dewey, closing to within a length of Classic Martine through a 1:24.4 three-quarter sectional. The two dueled through the far turn, and Rockin With Dewey ultimately wore down her main adversary, prevailing by three-quarters of a length in 1:53.1.   Trainer Benoit Baillargeon co-owns Rockin With Dewey with Diane Ingham.   In addition to the Miss Versatility, the 13-race program featured a pair of sub-featured Open events--one for trotters and one for pacers.   The $14,000 Open Trot saw Bourbon Bay ($4.10) set blistering fractions, fully extended on the far turn but able to hold sway from Smoother Ride in 1:54.1. In the $14,000 Open Pace, JK Panache ($18.80) likewise controlled the terms, holding off the steadily advancing Rockeyed Optimist for a 1:50.2 triumph. John Cummings, Jr. handled the driving duties of both Open winners on the day.   Live racing returns to Tioga Downs on Thursday (September 10) evening, with post time at 6:15 p.m. Eastern.   by James Witherite, Tioga Downs

The harness racing meeting on Saturday night at Hanover Raceway wraps up its 2015 Ontario Sires Stakes season with a Fan Celebration featuring a host of giveaways and five $18,000 Grassroots divisions for the three-year-old trotting fillies. Early arriving fans will have their choice of an Ontario Sires Stakes t-shirt or ball cap when they purchase a program at the Kiosk, and those arriving closer to the 7:15 pm post time could catch a t-shirt or ball cap as they are tossed out trackside throughout the evening. In addition to the OSS-wear, one lucky fan will take home a 50-inch Smart TV package from HDTV in Hanover and Walkerton. Personalities from CKNX AM 920, 101.7 The One and 94.5 Classic Rock will be on hand to visit with fans, award the Smart TV package to the prize winner, and present the trophy and blanket to each Grassroots division winner. To top off the festivities, fans will also be treated to live music by the Craig Dougan Band. Among those looking forward to the evening is trainer-driver Mark Etsell, who will send out sophomore trotting filly Tymal Signature from Post 4 in the third Grassroots division. "I like Hanover, it's a nice track, it's been good to me for years," said the former resident of Walkerton. "The surface is great and I always enjoy going there, even if it's just an overnight." Etsell, who currently resides in Rockwood, ON, shares ownership of Tymal Signature with Bob Newton of Walkerton and Steve Organ of Aurora, ON, and the horseman expects a crowd of friends and family will be on hand to support the filly's bid for one of 20 Semi-final berths. "Bob will be there and there will be a lot of people from the Hanover-Walkerton area. We seem to get lots of support that way," said Etsell. "A lot of people follow us still; it's going home kind of." With a pair of seconds and one fourth in her first three Grassroots appearances, Tymal Signature currently sits twenty-third in the division standings with 58 points. The daughter of Deweycheatumnhowe and Etsell's former racemare Blossom Seelster needs a few more points to extend her season through the Sept. 18 Semi-finals at Mohawk Racetrack. "I haven't looked at the standings, where she is exactly, but I am assuming if she's first or second it'll give her at least a shot," noted Etsell, adding that he has not had much luck in stake events at Hanover Raceway recently. Tymal Signature competed in the Dream Of Glory Eliminations on July 25 and finished fourth, failing to advance to the final, and her two-year-old stablemate Major Muscle won her Aug. 22 Balanced Image Elimination in a smart 2:00.3, then came up sick before the Final. "It hasn't been great to us, let's put it that way," said Etsell with a chuckle. "We were a little disappointed after last week, but that's how the ball rolls and you've got to take the bad with the good. "I was on the Board of Directors when we come up with those races, the Dream Of Glory and the Balanced Image, and I always wanted to win one, but maybe one of these days we'll get her done," he added. Tymal Signature will look to reverse Etsell's luck in Saturday's sixth race, where she faces six other fillies also hoping to pad their point tallies, including Pointe Of Inquiry, who will start from Post 2 for Arthur resident Wayne Henry. The three-year-old trotting fillies will wage their last regular season Grassroots battles in Races 1, 5, 6, 7, and 9 on Hanover Raceway's Fan Celebration night. Saturday's first race goes in behind the starting gate at 7:15 pm and the festivities get under way at 6 pm. Ontario Horse Racing

Vernon, N.Y. -- Making steady progress from just worse than midfield, Fleetwood Hall ($5.30) pushed clear of pacesetter Yankee Manny in mid-stretch to capture the featured $7,000 top-level conditioned trot on Saturday (August 29) evening at Vernon Downs.   Fleetwood Hall settled well off the pace in the initial stages, posing no threat until the middle stages of the race, when a first-over bid placed the 5-year-old Deweycheatumnhowe gelding within 3-3/4 lengths of pacesetter Yankee Manny (Chris Lems) after a soft :58.4 half mile. Roman Lopez and Fleetwood Hall intensified the pressure on Yankee Manny coming off the far turn, forcing a :28.2 third quarter before ultimately pushing clear in mid-stretch. Fleetwood Hall drew off to a two-length victory over Yankee Manny, while Frisky Joe (Claude Huckabone, III) rallied late to take third from a tiring Ulster (Brian Russo).   Deedra Johnson trains Fleetwood Hall for the M T Stables, Inc.   Chris Lems led all drivers with four wins on the 10-race program.   Live racing returns to Vernon Downs on Sunday (August 30) afternoon, with post time at 1:15 p.m. Eastern.   by James Witherite, Vernon Downs

Trotters and distaff pacers shared the spotlight at the harness racing meeting at Vernon Downs on Saturday (August 22) evening, and both $7,000 upper-level co-featured events saw decisive winners. The distaff pacing feature went to Pancakes ($3.00), a Heidi Rohr trainee who brushed to the lead after The Filly Princess (Frank Davis) clicked off a :27.4 initial quarter. After sweeping to the fore from third, the 4-year-old Sand Shooter mare drew clear of her five rivals, opening up a four-length lead through three-quarters in 1:23.1. Pancakes held clear to the end of her 1:51.4 triumph, maintaining 3-1/4 lengths clearance over a mild late rally from runner-up Love You Bye (Jimmy Whittemore). Truman Gale drove Pancakes for owner Dolores Smiel. While an odds-on favourite prevailed in the distaff feature, Fleetwood Hall ($21.40) scored a minor upset in the trotting feature, commencing his bid from worse than midfield once 3-5 favourite Verdi broke stride on the first turn. Roman Lopez moved the 5-year-old Deweycheatumnhowe gelding off the pegs with well over a half mile to go, sustaining a bold first-over bid through the far turn before pushing clear of pacesetter Ulster (Brian Russo) after passing three-quarters in 1:26. Once he passed Ulster, Fleetwood Hall opened up in the final yards, ultimately putting 4-3/4 lengths on Ulster for a 1:54.4 score. Painite (Truman Gale) sustained a mild bid to take third. Deedra Johnson trains Fleetwood Hall for the M T Stables. Live racing returns to Vernon Downs on Sunday (August 23) afternoon. Post time is 1:15 p.m. Eastern. James Witherite

After a two and a half month absence, three-year-old trotting filly Stubborn Belle returned to the winner's circle on Wednesday evening, capturing her $105,000 Gold Series division at the harness racing meeting at Grand River Raceway and causing trainer John Bax to hope history is about to repeat itself. "If she can stay healthy I'm hoping that she can kind of do what Riveting Rosie did last year, come on good at the end of the year," said Bax, who watched Riveting Rosie bank $409,180 in the last four months of her sophomore season. "I'm hoping this is deja vu because last year I had a lot of trouble with Riveting Rosie and she turned it around at Grand River, that was her first good race back, so I'm hoping the path is mapped out for her and she follows that." Stubborn Belle and driver Paul MacDonell followed a come-from-behind path on their way to Wednesday's victory. Starting from Post 6, Guelph, ON resident MacDonell eased the filly off the gate and had her settled on the rail in seventh when fan favourite All That Sparkles trotted by the opening quarter in :28. The pair remained at the rear of the main pack through the :57.3 half and then moved into the outer lane behind Amoureuse Hanover and Aspen California heading around the paddock turn. After following along in the outer lane through the 1:27.4 three-quarters, MacDonell sent Stubborn Belle out three wide and took aim on the leaders. The filly advanced steadily around the final turn and in the stretch she reeled in All That Sparkles, posting a neck victory in 1:58. All That Sparkles settled for second and Second Sister completed the top three. The win was Stubborn Belle's first since she swept the elimination and final of the WEG-SBOA Stake at Mohawk Racetrack in late May and Bax says the main obstacle in the Taurus Dream daughter's path back to the winner's circle has been her temperament, which matches her name. "If we turn her out with another horse she'll kick through the fence or get in a fight." "We try to be nice to her and pair her up with a horse, but if the mood strikes, the other horse has to watch out," explained the trainer. "She's always the one that kicks through the fence or kicks a board, kicks another horse." "My son Marshall named her." "We changed her name, and that's the name he figured she needed, and she's lived up to it," added the Campbellville resident. "It's a good thing she's a very good filly." Wednesday's victory improved Stubborn Belle's 2015 record to three wins and one third in seven starts and boosted her earnings to $167,430. At two, Stubborn Belle captured one Grassroots division and two Gold Series divisions, the Peaceful Way Final, and a division of the Champlain Stakes for earnings of $524,686. Bax, through his Parkhill Stud Farm, shares ownership of the filly with Al Libfeld of Pickering, ON. "Touch wood, she doesn't damage herself anymore this year, and it's onward and upward," said Bax, who is hoping the filly stays healthy for the Casual Breeze and Elegantimage Stakes at Mohawk in the coming weeks. The other division saw Tymal Illbthere earn her first Gold Series trophy with driver Mario Baillargeon opting for a strategy similar to the one used by MacDonell. Starting from Post 5, the Milton, ON resident settled Tymal Illbethere into seventh spot, watching as Gee Okeefe rang up a :28.2 opening quarter. Heading by the :59.1 half Baillargeon shifted Tymal Illbethere into the outer lane and soon after the 1:29.1 three-quarters he moved her three-wide. Once she hit open racetrack Tymal Illbethere accelerated away to a four length victory in 1:58.3, besting Bax trainee Juanitas Fury and pacesetter Gee Okeefe. The win was Tymal Illbethere's first in Gold Series competition and her third of the season, boosting her sophomore earnings to $92,309. At two the Deweycheatumnhowe daughter was a Grassroots winner, earning $86,968 for breeder Tymal Farms of Oldcastle, ON and Shawn Dixon of London, ON. Ervin Abdulov of London, ON conditions the filly. Their victories moved both Stubborn Belle and Tymal Illbethere into the top 10 in the Gold Series point standings, putting them into contention for a Super Final berth with one regular season event remaining, on Sept. 29 at Mohawk Racetrack. The $250,000 Super Final goes postward Oct. 10 at Woodbine Racetrack. Next up on Grand River Raceway's Ontario Sires Stakes schedule is the last regular season Grassroots contest for the three-year-old pacing colts and geldings on Wednesday, Sept. 2. Photo attached: Three-year-old trotting filly Stubborn Belle (6) edges out All That Sparkles (2) to earn her first Gold Series win of 2015 for driver Paul MacDonell of Guelph, ON. (Iron Horse Photo) Ontario Horse Racing

AUGUST 14, 2015 - Grand River Raceway hosted Ontario Sires Stakes Fan Celebration Night on Friday and fans that placed their trust in harness racing driver Trevor Henry did a whole lot of celebrating. The Arthur, ON resident won a pair of two-year-old trotting colt Gold Series divisions, finished second in the other Gold division, and won three overnight races on the 11 race program. "I haven't driven there in a while, so it was nice to have a good night," said Henry, who switched his focus from driving at the province's smaller ovals to driving at Mohawk and Woodbine Racetracks in 2014. Henry kicked off his evening with a runner-up finish in the first $70,000 Gold division, ringing up fractions of :28.3, :59 and 1:29.1 with Smoke Monkey before being caught in the stretch by Dunvegan Don. Fan favourite Adored By Masses finished third. "He's a nice colt. They had a lot of problems with him steering, he would always run in on the turns and he wasn't easy to drive, but Chris has got him figured out now," said Henry, who piloted Smoke Monkey for trainer Chris Beaver of Delaware, OH and Synerco Ventures Inc. of Toronto, ON. "Tonight was the best he ever drove so he'll probably only get better from now on." Guelph, ON resident Doug McNair piloted Dunvegan Don to his first victory, halting the Grand River teletimer at 1:58.2. Herbert Holland of Milton, ON owns and trains the Cornaro Dasolo colt, who finished third in the Aug. 7 Gold Leg at Mohawk Racetrack after a pair of disappointing outings in the first two Legs. "That horse has been quick since the start of the year, but was a little choppy gaited," explained McNair. "The last two starts he's been almost perfect. Herb has done a good job on him." The Trevor Henry show got under way in earnest in the second race when he piloted Ground Shaker to a win in a claiming event and then went back to the paddock to climb into the race bike behind two-time Gold Series winner Deweylovernleaver. Starting from Post 2 Henry fired the colt to the front and controlled the tempo through a :29.3 quarter, 1:00 half and 1:30.1 three-quarters. Henry then hit the accelerator and Deweylovernleaver accelerated down the stretch to a one and one-quarter length victory in a track record equalling 1:58.1. Fan favourite Tony Soprano settled for second and Unitaliano BI completed the top three. "He didn't have to work too hard, he kind of got everything his own way, but he trotted home a last quarter in :28," said the reinsman, adding that he feels the colt has not yet tapped his full potential. "He's a nice horse to drive and he doesn't do anything wrong." Chris Beaver trains Deweylovernleaver for his partners Synerco Ventures Inc. and Leo Fleming of Campbellville, ON. The Deweycheatumnhowe son boasts a record of three wins and one fourth in Gold Series action and currently sits atop the two-year-old trotting colt division standings with 158 points. In the final Gold Series division Henry also lined up behind Post 2 with Mass Balance and opted for the same strategy. Taking early command, Henry and Mass Balance got away with a :30 quarter, 1:01.1 half and 1:32 three-quarters on their way to a 2:01.2 victory. Nofear Blue Chip was one and one-quarter lengths back in second, and favourite Will Take Charge was two lengths to the rear in third. Synerco Ventures Inc. also owns Mass Balance, who is trained by Rob Fellows of Rockwood. The Muscle Mass son started his season in the Grassroots program where he was a winner in the July 11 season opener at Georgian Downs. Moving up to the Gold Series level Mass Balance finished third at Georgian Downs on July 21 and fifth at Mohawk Racetrack on Aug. 7. "He's a nice colt," said Henry, adding that he appreciates the investment Synerco Ventures has made in the Ontario Sires Stakes program in recent years. "I drive a lot for Synerco Ventures, Costa (Athanassoulias), I've got to know him over the last couple years and I've driven quite a few horses for him." The reinsman completed his five-win evening in the seventh and eighth races, both claiming events, with Tomei Seelster and Delcrest Flexyhall. In addition to the Gold Series divisions and the driving clinic put on by Henry, 100 fans were treated to Ontario Sires Stakes t-shirts autographed by first-crop sire Big Jim and Hall of Fame stallion Camluck, who passed away recently at the age of 28, and all fans enjoyed the creativity on display in the Horse Name Costume Game. After some difficult deliberations judges Gayle O'Brien from DAVE-FM, Jenna Knox from Grand River Raceway's Booking Department and driver Ryan Holliday selected one adult and one 15 and under winner. In the adult category Becky Koeslag got the nod for her representation of Gold Series competitor Bee In Charge and Paula Turnbull was the judge's choice in the youth category for her Coal Black Shadow costume. Ontario Sires Stakes excitement continues at Grand River Raceway next Wednesday, Aug. 19 with two $105,000 Gold divisions for the three-year-old trotting fillies. Ontario Horse Racing

The beautiful evening at Ocean Downs opened with four early non-wagering events starting with the harness racing 2 YO filly trotters.   Bold Dresser (Explosive Matter-Pretty In Plaid) made it to the winners circle for the second time this summer in MD Standardbred Fund events for driver-trainer Oyvind Hegdal and owner Glat Kosher Racing trotting her mile in 2:01.1. Frederick Hertrich III is the breeder. Frank Milby driving Tiara (RC Royalty-Panarail) was on the move at the ¾ pole but was unable to catch Bold Dresser in time.   The colt/gelding trot was up next, with most of the freshmen acting up, Kent County (Deweycheatumnhowe-Duchess Of Kent) made a very strong showing on the track winning by almost 24 lengths in 2:01.2. Frank Milby got the driving assignment from trainer and co-owners Robert Shahan and Donald Marine. The breeder was Frederick Hertrich III. After an early break Roger Hammer was able to get High Octane (Donato Hanover-Gaytanes) back on stride to finish second.   In the first division of filly pacers, Breadcrumb Income (Nuclear Breeze-Rose Royce) charged down the stretch for reinsman Roger Plante Jr. to nip Use Your Noodle (Artzina-Lo Gophobia) at the wire in 2:00. Richard Hans is the breeder, owner and trainer of Breadcrumb Income.   The second division of filly pacers produced a stakes and track record when Corey Callahan pulled Freeze Out (American Ideal-Mr Deli's Filly) going up the backside to take the lead and hold off a strong challenge by Miss Read (Shadow Play-Yahoos) with Vic Kirby in the bike. Time for the mile was 1:55.3. Erv Miller trains for owners Paymaq Racing and Leland Mathias, Winbak Farm was the breeder.   The wagering card opened with the first division of colt/gelding pacers. Not content to sit third, driver Corey Callahan shot Power To Perform (Artzina-Shake Rattle Run) to the front before the half and never looked back stopping the clock in 1:57.4 over Canthelpbutwin (Artzina-Native Canadian). Kyle Morre trains for owner Donald Marine. The breeder was Winbak Farm.   The Erv Miller-Corey Callahan connection proved successful once again in the final stake of the night the second division of colt/gelding pacers. Redneck Rally (American Ideal-Ms Harrington) took the lead from Lissilas (Rocknroll Hanover-Lismorebella) at the head of the stretch wining by two and a half lengths in 1:56.2 for owners Anthony Lombardi , Paymaq Racing and Louis Willinger and breeder Winbak Farm. Corey Callahan picked up 4 wins for the night, 3 stakes and one overnight.   Maryland Standardbred Fund stakes continue Thursday night with 8 divisions of 3 year olds starting with non-wagering events at 6 pm. The Maryland Horse Industry Board will be in attendance making some winner circle presentations.   By Cheri Stambaugh

Georgian Downs celebrates the Ontario Sires Stakes on the harness racing program on Saturday evening with seven divisions of Grassroots action for the two-year-old trotting fillies, the "Be A Winner" contest and "Wanna Drive" program. The freshman trotting fillies kick things off at 7:15 pm and compete in the first seven races on the program. Among the hopefuls is Darling Diva, co-owned by Beeton, ON resident Warren Casely, who makes her fourth Grassroots start from Post 7 in the third $18,000 division. "She's my first trotter, we've got a number of pacers, but she is the first trotter," said Casely, who shares ownership of the filly with trainer Rene Laarman of Guelph, ON. "And we like her. I mean she's just been a lot of fun so far." "Right now she's holding her own, she's not wining, but that's okay, winning's not everything," he added. In her first three Grassroots starts Darling Diva has recorded one third, one fourth and one sixth-place result, banking $3,600. In each start the young trotter has minded her manners and lowered her finishing time, giving her connections hope that she will eventually find her way to the winner's circle. "We just, we keep getting in the wrong division; we keep getting the fast division." "I'm trying to get the slower divisions please," said Casely with a chuckle. "But you know what, it's the luck of the draw and for her it's experience, and it's good experience." An $8,000 purchase out of last fall's Harrisburg Yearling Sale, the Deweycheatumnhowe daughter makes her second appearance of the season at Georgian Downs on Saturday and Casely is looking forward to catching this outing in person. "Her first lifetime (start) was at Georgian as a matter of fact, and sadly her first lifetime was the one that I wasn't at," admitted the owner. " We had another horse running at Mohawk - we try to get to all the races - so I went to Mohawk with her and my wife went to Georgian to watch Diva race." Paul Mackenzie will steer Darling Diva from Post 7 in the third race, lining up alongside two-time Grassroots winner Magical Steph, who gets Post 8 for driver Steve Byron of Thornton, ON and trainer Gary Lance of Port Perry, ON. In the seventh race one lucky fan will have an opportunity to join in the winner's circle celebrations as part of the Ontario Sires Stakes "Be A Winner" contest. Through the earlier races fans will have an opportunity to place "Be A Winner" ballots in the box belonging to the horse they believe will win the final Ontario Sires Stakes division. One ballot will be selected for each horse competing in the seventh race and those semi-finalists will be invited down trackside where they will receive an Ontario Sires Stakes golf shirt and ball cap and a $10 win wager on their chosen horse. The semi-finalist whose horse is victorious in Race 7 will join the winner's circle celebrations and add an Ontario Sires Stakes jacket, a photograph with the winning horse, and a $50 wagering voucher to their collection of prizes. Fans who want to get even closer to the action can participate in the "Wanna Drive" program. In a two-seated jog cart alongside an experienced driver fans can experience first-hand the thrill of driving a retired Standardbred racehorse. "We look forward to a great evening of OSS Grassroots racing, coupled with the ever popular Wanna Drive," said Bruce Barbour, Executive Director of Ontario Racing Operations for Georgian Downs parent company Great Canadian Gaming. Finally, fans can top off their evening by catching some OSS-wear during the trackside t-shirt and ball cap toss. T The Ontario Sires Stakes celebration gets under way at 7:15 pm. Ontario Horse Racing

AUGUST 7, 2015 - Deweylovernleaver eked out a second straight Gold Series harness racing victory by less than a length at Mohawk Racetrack on Friday evening. The two-year-old trotting colt and driver Trevor Henry hit the wire one-quarter length ahead of Dewey Dont Cheat and Zlatan in the second of three $70,000 Gold Series divisions. The fan favourites controlled the tempo for much of the mile and halted the Mohawk teletimer at 1:57.1, a new personal best for the young trotter. "I think he is a little bit lazy," said trainer Chris Beaver of the trotter's narrow margin of victory. "He can grab onto the bit pretty good, but once he gets into the mile he does seem like he only gives you what he needs to." Deweylovernleaver earned his first Ontario Sires Stakes trophy in the second Gold Leg at Georgian Downs on July 21, reaching the wire just a head in front of Will Take Charge in 1:57.4. In the Gold Series season opener at Mohawk on July 13 the Deweycheatumnhowe son was a hard-closing fourth, and in his only other outing he finished third in a two-year-old conditioned event at Mohawk on July 2. A $12,000 purchase out of the 2014 Harrisburg Yearling Sale, the colt has already accumulated $80,080 in earnings. "He's always been real good, he's been a pretty easy horse to train, and he's always shown a lot of talent," said Beaver, who shares ownership of Deweylovernleaver with Synerco Ventures Inc. of Toronto, ON and Leo Fleming of Campbellville, ON. "I thought back in February that he was the best colt I had." Based on the colt's performance in early season training miles, Beaver and his partners left the door open for Deweylovernleaver to tackle the best in North America this fall. "He's well staked," said the Delaware, Ohio-based trainer. "I guess we'll take that as we go, but he's staked to the Wellwood, and the Breeders Crown, and I believe even the Matron, so he's got lots. I thought he was good all along, we staked him well." Before he gets takes a run at any open stake events, Deweylovernleaver - and his two-year-old trotting colt peers - will make his fourth Gold Series start at Grand River Raceway on Aug. 14. Deweylovernleaver All three colts that captured Gold Series trophies at Mohawk on Friday had already enjoyed success in the Ontario Sires Stakes this season. A winner in the season opener, Adored By Masses returned to the Mohawk winner's circle with a late sprint that powered him past pacesetters Smoke Monkey and V For Victory. In rein to Milton, ON resident Sylvain Filion, Adored By Masses hit the wire two and one-half lengths on top in 1:57.4. Erv Miller conditions Adored By Masses for Anthony Lombardi of Morris, IL, Paymaq Racing of Long Grove, IL and Mystical Marker Farms LLC of Dyer, IN. In addition to his July 13 victory, the son of Muscle Mass and Armbro Adored posted a runner-up result in the July 21 Gold event and won two conditioned events, the first at Pocono Downs on June 21 and the second at Georgian Downs on July 4. Adored By Masses With two wins and a second in Gold Series action, Adored By Masses leads the two-year-old trotting colt division with 125 points. He is followed by Tony Soprano, the winner of the third division on Friday, with 112 points, and Deweylovernleaver with 108 points. Tony Soprano posted the quickest mile of the three Gold Series divisions on Friday, sailing along on the front end to a one and one-quarter length victory over Will Take Charge and Dunvegan Don in a personal best 1:56.4. Milton resident Randy Waples engineered the Kadabra son's second straight Gold victory for trainer Bob McIntosh of Windsor and his partners Mardon Stables of Loretto, ON, Paradox Farm Inc. of Caledon East, ON and Dave Boyle of Bowmanville, ON. In his only other start, the July 13 Gold opener at Mohawk, Tony Soprano finished third. Tony Soprano The talented two-year-old trotting colts have two events remaining on their regular season calendar, August 14 at Grand River Raceway and Sept. 29 at Mohawk. Ontario Sires Stakes action continues at Mohawk Racetrack on Monday, Aug. 10 with five Grassroots divisions for the three-year-old trotting fillies. Ontario Horse Racing

Caroline "Kitty" Gerry remembers the thrills she enjoyed watching Bruschette compete on the racetrack and she hopes to rekindle those feelings with a daughter of the stakes-winning trotting mare. Legal Lady, a daughter of Bruschette who Gerry bred and owns, is entered in Friday's second of three eliminations for the Jim Doherty Memorial Stakes (formerly Merrie Annabelle) for 2-year-old female trotters at Meadowlands Racetrack. The top three finishers from each elimination plus a fourth-place finisher drawn by lot will advance to the $389,450 final on Hambletonian Day, Aug. 8, at the Big M. Trained by Jan Johnson, who also conditioned Bruschette, Legal Lady will start her elimination from post two with Corey Callahan in the sulky. She is 15-1 on the morning line. Julie Miller-trained Womans Will, who will leave from post three with driver Andy Miller, is the 2-1 choice. Broadway Donna, from the stable of trainer Jim Campbell, is undefeated in four career races and the 4-5 favorite in the first elimination. Jimmy Takter's Kathy Parker, named in honor of the longtime editor and general manager of The Horseman And Fair World magazine, is the 5-2 favorite in the third division. Friday's card also features two eliminations for the Peter Haughton Memorial Stakes for 2-year-old male trotters. Ron Burke's Southwind Frank is the 2-1 morning line favorite in the first division and Takter-trained Bar Hopping is the 3-1 pick in the second. The top five finishers from each elimination advance to the $349,850 final on Hambletonian Day. Legal Lady, by stallion Deweycheatumnhowe, heads to the Doherty Memorial off a second-place finish in her career debut in a maiden race on July 17 at the Meadowlands. Legal Lady, who qualified four times prior to making her first purse start, finished a neck behind Jazebel De Vie in 1:58.3. "We haven't rushed her," said Gerry, a New York resident who is the wife of Harness Racing Hall of Fame member Ebby Gerry Jr. "I'm against that and Jan is more that way also. He doesn't like to rush them, especially at (age) 2. "She keeps bringing down her times, which is good. (Success) just depends on a lot of things. We'll hope. I'm not going to be disappointed as long as she races well." Gerry owned Bruschette during her racing career, which ended with nine wins in 48 races and earnings of $302,383. Her top victory came in the 2008 Allerage Farms Mare Trot at Lexington's Red Mile. Bruschette rallied from seventh place in the final quarter-mile to win by 1-1/2 lengths over Brigham Dream in a career-best 1:53.1. "She was great," Gerry said. "I went down to the winner's circle and there was a mother and child there. The child gave me the flowers and I was crying. The little girl said to her mother, why is she crying? I got so emotional. That was a big day for me. That was the most thrilling moment." Gerry hopes for more thrills with Legal Lady, who is all lady in the barn and all business on the track. "I can pet her, I can rub her nose, I can give her carrots, and the minute she comes out of the stall and you start putting the harness on her she is ready to go," Gerry said, adding with a laugh, "Then you don't want to be petting her or anywhere near her. "I'm excited," she added. "My husband keeps saying that you can't get attached. Well, I'm already attached. I can't help it. I rode as a kid all the time and I love animals." Gerry, who is an accomplished artist, hopes Legal Lady can paint a winning picture on Friday night, but knows it is a difficult assignment. She also knows the filly could have a lengthy career ahead of her. "If she qualifies for the final it would be very exciting," Gerry said. "I don't want to get my hopes too high and get disappointed. But even if she doesn't qualify, there will be other races. She's only 2. I just hope she stays trotting and stays healthy and we'll see what happens." Following are the elimination fields in post order for the Doherty Memorial with drivers, trainers and morning line: Elimination 1 1. Broadway Donna, David Miller, Jim Campbell, 4-5 2. I'm Outstanding, Yannick Gingras, Jimmy Takter, 8-1 3. Worldclass Hanover, Pat Lachance, Pat Lachance, 12-1 4. Hollywood Hill, Jimmy Takter, Jimmy Takter, 7-2 5. Celebrity Eventsy, Brett Miller, Staffan Lind, 8-1 6. Southwind Adele, Ake Svanstedt, Ake Svanstedt, 10-1 7. Everything N More, Tim Tetrick, Nancy Johansson, 20-1 8. Do I, Corey Callahan, Ron Burke, 20-1 Elimination 2 1. Candle In The Wind, Jim Marohn Jr., Janice Connor, 20-1 2. Legal Lady, Corey Callahan, Jan Johnson, 15-1 3. Womans Will, Andy Miller, Julie Miller, 2-1 4. Sharon's Luck, Brett Miller, Staffan Lind, 30-1 5. Gifted Lady, John Campbell, Jimmy Takter, 9-2 6. Miss Tezsla, Jimmy Takter, Jimmy Takter, 6-1 7. Twice Is Right, Yannick Gingras, Jimmy Takter, 5-2 8. Hot Curry, David Miller, Ron Burke, 8-1 9. Silent Blessings, Tim Tetrick, Nancy Johansson, 8-1 Elimination 3 1. New Leaf, Jim Marohn Jr., Tom Haughton, 20-1 2. Thankful Reward, Tim Tetrick, Tony Alagna, 5-1 3. Unau S, Corey Callahan, Jonas Czernyson, 20-1 4. Kathy Parker, Johnny Takter, Jimmy Takter, 5-2 5. Jazebel De Vie, Scott Zeron, Chris Ryder, 12-1 6. Silvia, David Miller, Ron Burke, 6-1 7. Sunset Glider, Yannick Gingras, Jimmy Takter, 3-1 8. Encore Gold, John Campbell, Charlie Norris, 4-1 9. Lindy's On Fire, Marcus Melander, Marcus Melander, 20-1 by Ken Weingartner Harness Racing Communications USTA      

JULY 22, 2015 - Guelph resident Anthony MacDonald took his brother's advice about an equipment change on two-year-old trotting filly Onatopp, and it paid off with a harness racing Grassroots victory at Grand River Raceway on Wednesday evening. "I was stubborn; I didn't want to put the hopples on her. I felt that, the few times that I put them on her, I didn't feel that she was as strong or as fast with them on, and I felt that I could keep her trotting, at least on the bigger track, without them," said MacDonald, who co-owns, trains and drives Onatopp. "And James had schooled her for me when I was away and he said, you know, I think she needs the hopples. And, you know, he was right. I put them on her and she was really, really good." Making her debut with trotting hopples from Post 9 in Wednesday's sixth Grassroots division, Onatopp was able to secure a spot on the rail in fourth as favourite Ballykeel Rocket led the field to a :31.4 opening quarter. MacDonald was content to sit fourth through the 1:04.3 half, but when Favourite Tweet stepped into the outer lane from third, he followed suit. Rolling by the 1:36 three-quarters MacDonald tipped Onatopp out three-wide and she sailed effortlessly past the leaders to the front, pulling away to a two and one-half length lead in the stretch and stopping the clock at 2:05.1. Ballykeel Rocket settled for second and pocket sitter Sweet With Heat was third. "I know she only went in 2:05.1 tonight, but she can go as fast as any Grassroots filly out there, there's no end to her speed," said MacDonald. "I mean she come a last half in :59 or something tonight and I never pulled the ear plugs, never even asked her, I just moved her out in position where she could do her work, and she was more than happy to do it." MacDonald and his partner Rene Allard of Milford, PA purchased Onatopp out of the Canadian Yearling Sale for $11,000. The filly is a Manofmanymissions half-sister to $529,825 winner Sim Brown, and the partners had high hopes for her all winter. Onatopp made her Ontario Sires Stakes debut in the July 12 Gold Series opener at Georgian Downs, but made a break and finished eighth, a result that prompted MacDonald to take his brother, James MacDonald's, advice. In addition to his brother, the horseman said a great deal of credit for Onatopp's victory falls to his wife Amy who works alongside him in their 11-horse stable. "She works really, really hard on them and she deserves a lot of the credit, a lot of the credit," he emphasized. In addition to Onatopp, six other fillies went home from Grand River Raceway with Grassroots trophies on Wednesday, with four of them also stepping down from the Gold Series for their second Ontario Sires Stakes start. Mariana and trainer-driver Riina Rekila kicked things off in the first race with a 2:04 clocking, reeling in pacesetter Shezastrikin Loral and pocket sitter Tala Seelster in the stretch. Rekila and Esa Lahtinen bred and own Mariana through their Overseas Farms Ltd. of Campbellville, ON. Rekila piloted the daughter of Manofmanymissions to a runner-up result in the Grassroots season opener at Georgian Downs on July 7. Trainer-driver Eddie Green piloted Malia to a 2:03 win in the second $18,000 division. The Cornaro Dasolo daughter bested Tymal Tempest and Early Decision by one-half length. Green conditions Malia for Kristine Green of Ohsweken and, like MacDonald, sent her to the Gold Series for her first provincial appearance, where she finished sixth. Guelph resident Phil Hudon crafted a gate-to-wire victory for Toss It Back in the third division. The Majestic Son filly cruised across the wire four lengths ahead of Chapel Hall and Talbotcreek Jetta. Trainer Pat Hunt of Cambridge, ON shares ownership of Toss It Back with Leo Fleming of Campbellville, ON. The win gives the filly one victory and one fourth-place result through the first two Grassroots events. Magical Steph was the second filly of the evening to step down from the Gold Series and find success, capturing the fourth Grassroots division with a late sprint past pacesetter and favourite Shes In Gear. Major Muscle rounded out the top three in the 2:02.1 mile. Steve Byron engineered the Kadabra filly's first victory for trainer Gary Lance and owner GL Racing Inc. of Port Perry, ON. In the fifth division, Deweycheatumnhowe daughter Dewdle All Day hit the wire three and one-half lengths up on Windsongmusclelady and Herbe A Loral in 2:03.3. Dustin Jones of Waterdown, ON drives, trains and co-owns Dewdle All Day with partners 9177 8720 Quebec Inc. of Saint-Sauveur, QC and Greg Judson of Athens, ON. Dewdle All Day came into the test off a sixth-place result in the July 12 Gold Series event. The final Grassroots trophy of the evening went home with Myretirementticket, the fifth competitor shifting from Gold to Grassroots competition. The Cornaro Dasolo daughter and owner-trainer-driver Eli Wagler of Ingersoll, ON cruised along on the front end to a 2:01.1 victory, crossing the wire two and three-quarter lengths ahead of Very Classy and Cadillac Sally. The two-year-old trotting fillies make their third Grassroots start at Mohawk Racetrack on July 30. Grand River Raceway's next Ontario Sires Stakes event will come during the highly anticipated Industry Day program on Monday, Aug. 3. The Elora oval will host the third Gold Leg for the three-year-old pacing fillies in addition to the finals for its signature races, the Battle of the Belles for two-year-old pacing fillies and Battle of Waterloo for two-year-old pacing colts. Ontario Horse Racing

Hall of Fame driver John Campbell made his first appearance at Georgian Downs on Tuesday evening, making the trip up from his New Jersey home to partner two-year-old trotting colt Tony Soprano in Ontario Sires Stakes harness racing action. "I got to Grand River last year, and this is my first trip to Georgian Downs," said Campbell, who is considered one of the leading reinsmen of all time. "Very impressed with the plant, it's really a nice paddock and a nice grandstand and everything, just very impressed with that and glad to be here for the first time to see it." Making the trip even more enjoyable was its successful outcome. Lining up at Post 2 in the second $70,000 Gold division, Campbell guided Tony Soprano to a 1:57.3 victory. The pair bested fan favourite Adored By Masses by one-quarter length, with Im A Mate well back in third. Hall of Famer Bob McIntosh trains Tony Soprano for his partners Mardon Stables of Loretto, ON, Paradox Farm Inc. of Caledon East, ON and Dave Boyle of Bowmanville, ON, and it was at his request that Campbell made the trip to Georgian Downs. "He had told me early in the spring that he had a trotting colt that he really liked and that he'd keep me posted on his progress," explained Campbell. "Once he got qualified he asked me to come up last week and we both were happy with the horse, he did all he could in the situation, so I think he's off to a good start." In the Gold Series season opener at Mohawk Racetrack on July 13 Campbell and Tony Soprano tried to squeeze up the rail in the stretch and found themselves short of room before the wire. The colt finished third, one-half length behind the leaders in the 1:57.4 mile. "I didn't get him in a very good spot," Campbell admitted. "I had him in a bad spot, drove him bad, but the colt was good." On Tuesday Campbell and Tony Soprano sat fourth through the early going then started to press pacesetter and fan favourite Adored By Masses going by the three-quarter pole. The colts battled all the way to the wire, with Tony Soprano digging in through the final strides for the win. "He went a really professional race, very happy with him. I got him in a better spot this week," said Campbell with a chuckle. The son of Kadabra and $1.2 million winner Windsong Soprano was a $90,000 purchase by Windsor, ON resident McIntosh and his partners at last fall's Lexington-Selected Yearling Sale. Tuesday's victory put his earnings, after two races, at $47,600. Campbell also piloted Nofear Blue Chip in the season opener, and was back behind the gelding in the first division on Tuesday for trainer Paul Reid and owner Norah Parks of New Lowell, ON Although he did not guide Nofear Blue Chip to the winner's circle, finishing third behind Deweylovernleaver and Will Take Charge, Campbell was pleased with the progress the youngster had made since July 13. "Paul didn't get to work him as much last week as he would have liked going into the race and he really improved off of that race in Mohawk, because he trotted more here than he did in Mohawk," noted the reinsman.  "So I was very happy, and he was stronger his last quarter than he was last week." Deweylovernleaver circled out from the back field turning for home and sprinted down the stretch to a head victory in 1:57.4 for driver Trevor Henry of Arthur, ON, trainer Chris Beaver of Delaware, OH and his partners Synerco Ventures Inc. of Toronto, ON and Leo Fleming of Camp Bellville, ON. The Deweycheatumnhowe son was a $12,000 purchase from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale, and finished fourth, just behind Tony Soprano, in the season opener. The final division was captured by Unitaliano BI and trainer-driver Dustin Jones, who went gate-to-wire in 1:58.3 Pukka and Mass Balance finished four and one-quarter lengths back in second and third. "It would be nice to be able to race him out of a hole, but that's the way he wants to race, so it's better than fighting with him," said Jones, ruefully. "He actually trained great all winter. I thought he was a top colt all winter, but then as we got closer to race we were having a hard time to control him," the Waterdown, ON resident continued. "He wouldn't sit in a hole, he'd get mad. If you put anything on him to hold him, he'd get mad and he'd fight you. And he's such an intelligent horse in the barn; he's like a little kitten in the barn." Jones shares ownership of the stubborn youngster - who made an early break and finished fifth in the season opener - with Noblock Racing Stable of Collingwood, ON and William Jones of Lexington, KY. The trio acquired the Manofmanymissions son from the Lexington-Selected Yearling Sale for $20,000. The two-year-old trotting colts and geldings make their third Gold Series start at Mohawk Racetrack on August 7, while their Grassroots counterparts journey to Georgian Downs on Tuesday, August 4. Ontario Horse Racing

July 18, 2015 - On July 17 at Axevella, Gematrix (3f Explosive Matter-Ginevre-SJ’s Caviar) took the Bjertorps Traveamps (2140 meters autostart, 100,000SEK to the winner, three year-olds). Torbjorn Jansson drive the winner for trainer Frode Hamre, this one a 2015 US import. She has a 3-2-3 slate in nine career appearances after this 1.14.7kr victory. On the same card the Venernkotts Femarinpspris (2140 meters autostart, 100,000SEK to winner, five year-olds) went to Boys Going In (5m Going Kronos-Namore-Buvetier d’Aunou) with Johan Untersteiner aboard, timed in 1.12.1kr. Boys Going In now has a 9-4-3 slate in 31 starts for 1,703,150SEK earned. Call Me Keeper (5m Pine Chip-Eliza Keeper-Credit Winner) was second in a photo for Bjorn Goop and trainer Daniel Reden. At Bergsaker on July 16 Trading (3f Deweycheatumnhowe-Hostage-Express Ride) took the Norrlands Elit Final over 2140 meters autostart. The winner earned 200,000SEK for the 1.13.1kr win in this three year-old event with Orjan Kihlstrom up for trainer Svante Bath. She has a 4-1-1 slate in eight career starts. Hostage is the dam of Quid Pro Quo, a Yankee Glide winner of over US$810,000. The Norrlands Grand Prix Final for four year-olds (2140 meters autostart, 250,000SEK first prize) went to Daley Lovin (4m Conway Hall-Dreamsmadeofthis-Dream Vacation) in 1.11.6kr for Daniel Reden and Stall Zet. He scored by five lengths and now sports a 10-4-7 slate in 35 career outings. Another US import, Scacco Matto, finished eighth in this race. The same day at Karlshamn, a 1680 meters autostart event, worth 22,000SEK to the winner, went to Celebrity Hall (6g Tom Ridge-Canne Angus-Magna Force) with Peter Ingves driving. He stopped the teletimer in 1.15.8kr for his sixth career win in 41 starts. Canne Angus is dam of Canland Hall (US$2,687.000), Cameron Hall (US$1,816,000) and Courtney Hall (US$114,000). The top race of the July 15 day was held at Solanget where the Silver Division (100,000SEK to the winner, 1646 meters autostart) was won by Knows Nothing (6m Kadabra-Savvy Yankee-Balanced Image) with Ulf Ohlsson driving. Knows Nothing recorded his 16th career victory in 44 outings, now for over 5.2SEK million earned. In addition to Knows Nothing, his dam Savvy Yankee produced Rocky Balboa (US$435,000) and Muscles To Spare (US$257,000). International fast-class winner Ed You (8g Love You-Lancia Brick-Super Arnie) was second for Robert Bergh and owner Stall Sedin AM. Third was Shaq Is Back (8m Credit Winner-Vivica Hall-Victory Dream) trained by Daniel Reden and reined by Orjan Kihlstrom. Ed You has 25 wins for 5.8SEK million won; Shaq Is Back has 21 wins for almost 4.6SEK million earned. Thomas H. Hicks

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