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AUGUST 29, 2015 - Georgian Downs wrapped up their 2015 Ontario Sires Stakes season on Saturday evening with four impressive Grassroots performances from the harness racing three-year-old pacing fillies. Stonebridge Quest paced the quickest mile of the four $18,000 divisions, rocketing around the Georgian Downs oval to a one and one-half length victory in 1:51.4. The Camluck daughter and driver Trevor Henry powered away from Post 7 as the heavy favourites and controlled the pace from start to finish, ringing up fractions of :27.2, :56 and 1:23.3 on their way to the win. Warrawee Qually and Brown Brinny finished second and third. Arthur, ON resident Henry engineered Stonebridge Quest's third Grassroots win of the season for trainer Andrew McCabe and owners Glenview Livestock Ltd. of Guelph, ON and Angie Stiller of Arva, ON. The Grassroots Championship winner at two, Stonebridge Quest currently sits second in the division standings with 150 points, assuring her of a berth in the Semi-finals. The top 20 point earners following the last regular season event, at Mohawk Racetrack on Sept. 7, will compete in the Sept. 18 Semi-finals, also at Mohawk, and the top five finishers from each Semi-final will return to the Campbellville oval for the $50,000 Grassroots Championship on Sept. 26. In addition to the win with Stonebridge Quest, Henry also piloted Evas Girl to victory in the last Grassroots division. Evas Girl also lined up behind the number seven on the Georgian Downs starting gate, but Henry opted for a different strategy with the Rambaran daughter, easing away from the start and landing on the rail in fifth. From that vantage point Henry watched Nationalize lead the field to a :26.4 quarter and a :55.3 half and then decided to send Evas Girl into the outer lane. When the fillies leading the charge up the outer lane failed to make any gains on the leader, Henry sent Evas Girl out three-wide and the filly had a short lead by the 1:24.2 three-quarters which she had increased to five lengths by the finish. The 1:53.2 clocking was a personal best for Evas Girl. I Wonder Why and Windsun Chanel completed the top three. Isaac Waxman of Dundas, ON trains Evas Girl for Aaron Waxman of Hamilton, ON, Alan Alber of Thornhill, ON and Crawford Partners LLC of Syracuse, NY. In three Grassroots starts the filly now has two wins and one third for a total of 112 points and a share of fourth spot in the standings. Division leader Dublin Rose captured her third Grassroots trophy in the third division at Georgian Downs on Saturday. The Major In Art daughter delivered an impressive effort that saw her pressing pacesetter Machmeter for most of the mile before pulling away to a one-half length victory in the stretch. Much Adoo and Twin B Honour finished second and third in the 1:53 mile. Purchased by Finksburg, MD resident Jerry Clark from breeder Allen Tomlinson of Mason, MI following her Aug. 14 Grassroots start, Saturday's outing was Dublin Rose's first from trainer Dave Menary's Rockton, ON barn. Driver Robert Shepherd of Cambridge, ON steered the fan favourite to the win. With three wins and one second in the first four Grassroots events, Dublin Rose has accumulated 175 points. The other Grassroots division saw Lovely Erin earn the first Grassroots trophy of her career with a hard fought effort that saw her pressed through every step of the mile. The Sportswriter daughter hit the wire a neck in front of Got Some Spark and War Filly in 1:54.1 to secure the win. London, ON resident Nick Steward piloted Lovely Erin to the win for trainer Ron Adams of LaSalle, ON and owner 1362313 Ontario Ltd. of Windsor, ON. Third in her Grassroots debut at Mohawk Racetrack on Aug. 14, Lovely Erin has 62 points and will be looking to pad that total in the last regular season event. In addition to the four Grassroots divisions, Georgian Downs fans were also treated to the $100,000 Honourable Earl Rowe Memorial Trot, which was captured by Rockin With Dewey in 1:53.2. Bob McClure of Orangeville, ON crafted the win for trainer Benoit Baillargeon of Rockwood, ON and his partner Diane Ingham of Mount Pleasant, ON. Ontario Horse Racing

AUGUST 25, 2015 - After coming close in each of his previous Gold Series starts, three-year-old pacing gelding Mr Carrotts scored a narrow victory in front of a hometown crowd at Georgian Downs on Tuesday evening. Owned and bred by Melvyn Varcoe of Thornton, Mr Carrotts trailed fan favourite Go Daddy Go in the outer lane for much of the mile and then sprinted down the stretch to get a whisker in front of Sportsmanship for his first Gold Series win. It was also a close contest for third, with pacesetter Star Cover holding off Robert Hill. Mr Carrotts and driver Paul MacKenzie of Puslinch, ON stopped the Georgian Downs teletimer at 1:53.2 over a "Good" track rated one second slower than normal. "He always showed talent, but he's lazy," said Murray Brethour, who conditions the Mach Three gelding for Thornton resident Melvyn Varcoe and actually sold the horse's dam, Cueless, to Varcoe's father Clarence in 2001. "I bought the mother as a yearling and then I got out of racing and I sold her," explained the Sunderland resident. "She was a good mare." Cueless earned $466,638 in her racing career and produced $240,028 winner Card Hustler in her first mating. Mr Carrotts is her fourth foal and to date he has banked $116,318, with all but $10,000 coming this season. Through 13 sophomore starts the gelding has tallied two wins, three seconds, five thirds and three fifths. With a five and one-half week break before the fifth and final Gold Leg, Brethour says Mr Carrotts will likely enjoy a mini-vacation before beginning preparations for the regular season finale and, hopefully, the Super Final. The top 10 point earners from the regular season advance to the Super Final and Tuesday's victory boosted the gelding up the point standings from thirteenth to fifth. "We'll give him a couple of weeks off, freshen him up," said Brethour. "He's very laid back. It takes a little while to jog him, he don't get too excited, you're out there for half an hour. "Only bad thing about him - I don't own him," concluded Brethour, with a chuckle. In addition to Mr Carrotts' hometown win, Tuesday's Gold Series contest also featured the return of 2014 freshman pacing colt champion Reverend Hanover. Sidelined by an injury in May, the son of Sportswriter missed the first three Gold Legs and was looking to make up for lost time from Post 2 in the second $105,000 division. With Hall of Famer Steve Condren in the race bike, Reverend Hanover controlled the race from start to finish, sailing home two and three-quarter lengths the best in 1:51.4. Pocket-sitter Drachan Hanover earned the second-place share and early challenger J Js Delivery was third. Milton, ON resident Condren crafted the win for trainer Casie Coleman of Cambridge, ON and owners West Wins Stable of Cambridge, Steve Calhoun of Chatham, ON and Anthony Beaton of Waterdown, ON. With Tuesday's victory under his belt, Coleman said the winner of $224,500 has a number of open stakes engagements on his calendar before the next Gold Leg. "He is fully staked up, and there are still enough dances on his plate to rack up some money," said the trainer. "The next big one would be Sept. 12 at Mohawk, the Simcoe, and I wouldn't mind a three-year-old open next Saturday (at Mohawk) if they can fill one." Through three starts in his two-year-old campaign and Tuesday's triumph, Reverend Hanover remains undefeated in Gold Series action. The three-year-old pacing colts and geldings make their final regular season Gold Series start at Woodbine Racetrack on Oct. 2 and the $250,000 Super Final will also be contested at Woodbine on Oct. 10. Georgian Downs wraps up its 2015 Ontario Sires Stakes schedule on Saturday, Aug. 29 with the fifth Grassroots event for the three-year-old pacing fillies. Ontario Horse Racing

Ontario's top two-year-old harness racing fillies took centre stage at Georgian Downs on Saturday night and trotter Could It Be Magic landed Fred Brayford in the winner's circle at his local oval for the second time this summer. Starting from Post 4 in the third $70,000 Gold division, trainer-driver Wayne Henry sent Could It Be Magic directly to the front and the filly sailed along through fractions of :29, :58.4 and 1:27.3. Major Muscle mounted a challenge through the final quarter, but favourite Could It Be Magic accelerated away to a one and one-quarter length win in 1:56.4. Major Muscle settled for second and I Want Kandy completed the triactor. "She's very natural, knew what she was doing from Day 1," said Henry, who shares ownership of the filly with Alliston resident Brayford. "She's pretty plain and simple." The win was Could It Be Magic's third in Gold Series action. In addition to Saturday's victory and her win in the July 12 season opener at Georgian Downs, the Kadabra daughter was also successful at Mohawk Racetrack on Aug. 4. In her other provincial outing, Could It Be Magic finished fifth in the July 23 Gold Leg at Mohawk, giving her a total of 155 points and sole ownership of second in the division standings. Henry selected the filly out of the 2014 Harrisburg Yearling Sale for $18,000 and in her first five starts Could It Be Magic has earned $106,750. "The first day I looked at two and she was up first. I didn't think I'd be able to get her for that kind of money, and for some reason I got her cheap," noted Henry, adding that it was a combination of the filly's pedigree, size and good looks that caught his eye at the sale. The two-year-old trotting fillies now have a six-week break before their next Gold Series start and Could It Be Magic and several of her peers will be competing in open stake events at Mohawk Racetrack. "She has the Champlain (Sept. 3) and the Peaceful Way (Sept. 10 and 19) - and the Balanced Image (Aug. 22 and 29), but that's going to make it too tight, so I think we'll keep her out of that," said Arthur, ON resident Henry. "They've only got so many starts in them." Division point leader Caprice Hill will be joining Could It Be Magic on the open stakes circuit after posting her third Gold Series victory on Saturday. In spite of a brief hiccup at the start when she accelerated into the gate and went off stride, the heavy favourite took command at the three-quarter marker and cruised home a two length winner in 1:56.1. Devils Advocate and Dewdle All Day finished second and third. Yannick Gingras engineered the win for trainer Tony Alagna of Manalapan, NJ and owner Tom Hill of Hamilton, ON. The Kadabra daughter, a $55,000 acquisition at Harrisburg last fall, boasts a record of three wins and one second in four starts for a division leading point total of 175 and earnings of $113,750. High Heels captured the other trotting filly Gold trophy, digging in down the stretch for a three-quarter length win over Silky Flashy Nfast and favourite Its All About Sam. The 1:59 score was engineered by Rick Zeron for trainer Jimmy Takter and owners Christina Takter of East Windsor, NJ, John and Jim Fielding of Toronto, ON and Herb Liverman of Miami Beach, FL. The win was the Kadabra daughter's first in four outings and gives her a total of 82 points toward a berth in the season ending Super Final. A $115,000 purchase at Harrisburg, High Heels had scored one fourth and two thirds in the first three Gold Legs. Yannick Gingras earned owner Tom Hill a second Gold Series trophy when he guided Heavenly Hill to a 1:54.3 victory in the third pacing filly division. Gingras sent the Art Colony daughter to the front heading for the halfway marker and Heavenly Hill hit the wire two lengths ahead of Danish N Coffee and Golden Idol. Heavenly Hill benefited from an early miscue by division point leader Thatsoveryverynice and an error by challenger Kays Shadow at the three-quarters, but Cambridge, ON resident Dave Menary conditions the homebred for Hill and said he was expecting a solid effort from the young pacer. "I expected her to race good, I just didn't expect to get paid that much," said Menary. "Yannick let the dust settle and then moved her, and a couple horses made mistakes and we didn't make any mistakes tonight. "I'm really happy with tonight's performance," he added. Heavenly Hill started her Ontario Sires Stakes career in the Grassroots program, scoring one win and one second before making the leap up to the Gold Series on Saturday. In four lifetime starts she has earned $48,500. Thisorthat Hanover was awarded the trophy in the first $70,000 pacing filly division after she was knocked off stride by a drifting Bernadette in the stretch. Bernadette crossed the wire first, but was placed back to second and Thisorthat Hanover was promoted from second to first. Free Show finished third in the 1:53.1 mile. Randy Waples drives Thisorthat Hanover for trainer James "Friday" Dean and owner Scott Horner of Toronto. In four starts the Sportswriter daughter, who was a $110,000 purchase at the Harrisburg Yearling Sale, boasts a record of two wins, one second and one third for earnings of $67,900. The second pacing filly division saw Waples return to the winner's circle with L A Delight, who hit the wire one length ahead of Twin B Thong and Betty Hill in 1:53.2. The win was L A Delight's fifth straight and her second in Gold Series action. Bob McIntosh of Windsor trains the homebred Bettors Delight daughter for his partners C S X Stables of Liberty Centre, OH and Al McIntosh Holdings Inc. of Leamington, ON. The two-year-old pacing fillies also have a break in Ontario Sires Stakes action during the fall Grand Circuit Stakes at Mohawk Racetrack, returning to Gold Series action at Grand River Raceway on Sept. 21. Ontario Sires Stakes action returns to Georgian Downs on Sunday, Aug. 23 with the fourth Grassroots event for the two-year-old pacing colts. Ontario Horse Racing

Magical Steph scored her third straight win in Grassroots action at the harness racing meeting during Georgian Downs' celebration of the Ontario Sires Stakes program on Saturday evening. The two-year-old trotting filly and driver Steve Byron of Thornton, ON powered away from Post 7 and sat third through fractions of :28 and :59, then moved to take command of the race heading for the 1:28.3 three-quarters. One and three-quarter lengths ahead of the field turning for home, Magical Steph hit the wire three lengths ahead of her peers in 1:58.1. Dayliner and Wonder Wand earned the second and third place shares of the $18,000 Grassroots purse. "Some of the guys in our barn, they joke that she's been push button right from the start," said owner-trainer Gary Lance with a chuckle. "A Kadabra - push button." Magical Steph qualified at Georgian Downs on June 27 and made her racing debut in the first freshman trotting filly Gold Leg at the Innisfil oval on July 12. The daughter of Kadabra and I Like Stephanie finished a closing fourth, but Lance felt a stint at the Grassroots level would serve as a better platform for the filly's long term development. "She was a late foal, she's a May foal, and we lost a little bit of time with her in the spring." "We knew going into the start of the Sires Stakes that she was a little bit behind the other fillies, probably a good month, so that's kind of why we just thought we'd try her in the Gold and see how she was," explained Lance. "She's getting better every week and these races in the Grassroots have really helped her develop." Since moving down to the Grassroots level, Magical Steph has posted a 2:02.1 quarter length victory at Grand River Raceway on July 22, a four and three-quarter length 1:57.1 personal best at Mohawk Racetrack on July 30 and Saturday night's victory at Georgian Downs. Through four starts she has banked $31,200. Once the filly has a had a few days to recover from Saturday's contest, Lance will decide whether her next start will be the fifth Grassroots event at Rideau Carleton Raceway on August 16 or the fourth Gold Series event, back at Georgian Downs on August 15. "We'll see how she comes out of this, we haven't decided what we're going to do next week, whether we're going to go to Ottawa," said the Port Perry, ON resident. "It's kind of a long hike up to Ottawa, so we just might stay local around here and try the Gold." A $50,000 purchase from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale last fall, Magical Steph is a full-sister to Lance's good trotter Cold Certified, who was a three-time Gold Elimination winner in his 2012 sophomore season. Since then the colt has gone on to earnings of $436,478 and currently competes out of the Jeff Brewer barn at Scioto Downs. "We raced the full brother to her, Cold Certified, I bought him off Robert and Owen Coblentz from Double Spring Farm in Ohio," said Lance "She's kind of like the spitting image of him, looks just like him and travels the same way on the track like him." Lance, who works full-time as a maintenance manager at Ontario Power Generation, currently has one other trotter in his barn in addition Magical Steph and says the support of family and friends have been instrumental to both the filly's and her brother's success. "This is our hobby, and we always have a good contingent of people that come with us and support us." "My buddy Brian Samis and his son Ryan, they come to almost every race," said Lance. "We always have fun when we go to race, we always enjoy it." "I think it's kind of a boys night out for us because we don't race very often, and when we go out we really enjoy it and we enjoy each other's company." "We have a great time when we do race." "And my son helps out quite a bit, Trevor (Lance), he helps around the barn and comes and helps us race and he helps with the daily activities at the barn, he's quite involved as well." Other ownership groups that were celebrating at Georgian Downs on Saturday were those connected to Dewdle All Day, Its All About Sam, Majestic Presence, Smash Hit, Liseberg and Mariana. Dewdle All Day popped out of the pocket to win the first division for trainer-driver Dustin Jones of Waterdown, ON and his partners 9177 8720 Quebec Inc. of Saint-Sauveur, QC and Greg Judson of Athens, ON. The Deweycheatumnhowe daughter hit the wire in a personal best 1:59.3, one and one-quarter lengths ahead of favourite I Want Kandy and Shezastrikin Loral. Its All About Sam picked up her third Grassroots trophy in the second division, cruising home a two and three-quarter length winner in 1:58.3. Paul MacDonell of Guelph, ON crafted the win for trainer Scott McEneny of Waterdown, ON and owners Brad Grant and Teresa Davidson of Milton, ON and Michelle McEneny of Waterdown. Tough Affair and Chapel Hall finished second and third behind the Angus Hall daughter. Majestic Presence went gate-to-wire in 1:58.4 to record her first lifetime victory for trainer-driver Anthony MacDonald of Guelph, ON and owners Brenda Selwyn Waxman and Isaac Waxman of Dundas, ON, Rene Allard of Milford, PA and Danielle Henri of Saint-Esprit, QC. The Majestic Son daughter bested Trumpets and Jarette AS by four and one-half lengths. Smash Hit also earned her first victory with a 1:59.2 score in the fifth division. The Kadabra filly and trainer-driver Per Henriksen of Norwood, ON hit the wire one and one-half lengths ahead of Traviata and Anneli Hanover. Steve Organ of Aurora, ON and Asa Farm of Norwood share ownership of Smash Hit. Owner, trainer and driver Dagfin Henriksen of Peterborough, ON guided Liseberg to her first win in Race 6, one and one-quarter lengths ahead of Cadillac Sally and Malia. The Johnny William daughter controlled the tempo from start to finish, reaching the wire in 1:58.1. The final Grassroots trophy of the evening went home with Mariana, who sprinted down the stretch to a 1:59.3 victory over Malibu Seelster and T C Sno Massive. Riina Rekila of Campbellville, ON trains and drives Manofmanymissions daughter Mariana for Overseas Farms Ltd. of Campbellville. Next Saturday, August 15 Georgian Downs hosts Gold Series action for both the two-year-old pacing fillies and two-year-old trotting fillies. Ontario Horse Racing

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

Ontario's two-year-old trotting colts kicked off the second half of their Grassroots season at the harness racing meeting at Georgian Downs on Tuesday evening with six impressive performances. "There were some good miles out there," said Thornton, ON resident Steve Byron. "They're getting their second or third start and they're starting to figure it out, a lot of them, and they're getting a lot better for sure." Byron piloted Manofmanyimages to a win in the fifth $18,000 Grassroots division, going gate-to-wire from Post 4. The duo rolled through fractions of :30.1, 1:01 and 1:30.4 without facing a challenge, cruising home two length winners in 2:00.4. Dynamic Edge and Cooper finished second and third. "He's a big strong colt, but he doesn't pay attention all the time," noted the reinsman. "He seems to be getting a little better." "He's a fast enough horse I think." Tuesday evening was the second time Byron has piloted the Manofmanymissions son for trainer John Bax of Campbellville, ON and owners Richard Gutnick of Blue Bell, PA, T L P Stable of Kearny, NJ and Joseph Lozito Jr. of Wayne, NJ. In their first Ontario Sires Stakes outing, at Mohawk Racetrack on July 28, Manofmanyimages made a late break as Byron sent him up the outside after the lead and the pair had to settle for fourth. "They had some issues just rigging him up properly and they were trying some things on him, but he's (Bax) got him pretty much sorted out now I think," said Byron. "Like I said, if he minds his manners and pays attention to everything he can trot." A $70,000 purchase from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale, Manofmanyimages moved into Bax's barn in early July after being qualified twice by New York-based trainer Ed Hart. With one fourth and one win in his first two Grassroots starts the colt has accumulated 58 points toward a berth in the post season. In addition to his win with Manofmanyimages, Byron recorded a runner-up finish with Rose Run Rudi, finishing in a dead-heat for second with Grego. Byron steers Rose Run Rudi for his brother David Byron of Thornton, James Cantelon of Thornton, David Cantelon of Bolton, ON and Craig Wallwin of Barrie, ON. The colts hit the wire four and one-half lengths behind Willyorwonthe, who recorded his second straight Grassroots victory for driver Mike Saftic of Campbellville and trainer, owner and breeder Bill Megens of Puslinch, ON. The heavy favourites took control heading for the :59.2 half and cruised home unchallenged in 1:58.4. The win was the Angus Hall son's third in five starts. Saftic also scored a win in the first Grassroots division, sprinting down the stretch with Money Mission to claim a one-half length victory over favourite Georgies Pockets in 1:59.2. Cool Creek Victory was two and three-quarter lengths back in third. Oakville, ON resident Rick Zeron conditions Money Mission for his partners Cool Cat Racing Inc. of Bryn Mawr, PA and Paul Marion of Marionville, ON. The Manofmanymissions son also has a second and a fifth to his credit through three Grassroots appearances. Thee Desperado picked up his second Grassroots trophy in the second division, squeezing up the inside to a neck victory over JLs Bad Moon Risin. Windsun Missile was one and one-half lengths behind the duelling leaders in third. Milton, ON resident Steve Condren engineered Thee Desperado's 2:00.2 victory for trainer Brent Belore of Embro, ON and owners Karen and Daniel MacIntyre of London, ON, Joshua McKibbin of Tillsonburg, ON and Nancy Newport of Ingersoll, ON. Another son of Manofmanymissions, Thee Desperado has a perfect 100 points through two Grassroots starts. Muscle Time added another win to his resume in the third division, leading the field by as many as nine lengths before sailing under the wire two lengths on top in 2:00.1. Fan favourite United BI settled for second, with Defi Normand rounding out the top three. Darryl Laver of Petrolia, ON bred, owns, trains and drives Muscle Time, who is a Muscle Mass son from his former race mare Spare Time Rozie. The last Grassroots trophy of the evening was captured by Wildwild Men, who jumped to the top of the division standings with a 2:00.3 score over Magic Missions and Sass. Robert Shepherd of Cambridge, ON crafted the gate-to-wire victory for trainer Isabelle Darveau of Cambridge, ON and owners Catheline Pelletier of Mirabel, OC and Chantal Gravel of St-Cyrille-de-Wendover, QC. Through the first four Grassroots events the Muscle Mass son has tallied two wins, one second and one fifth for a point total of 130. Wildwild Men will attempt to hold onto top spot when the two-year-old trotting colts and geldings make their fifth Grassroots start at Mohawk Racetrack next Tuesday, August 11. Ontario Sires Stakes excitement returns to Georgian Downs on Saturday, August 8 in the shape of the two-year-old trotting fillies, who will battle in their fourth Grassroots event. 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 19, 2015 - Reigning Lampman Cup champion Doug McNair earned his first Ontario Sires Stake hat trick of the harness racing season at Georgian Downs on Sunday evening. The 25-year-old made his first trip to the Georgian Downs winner's circle in the third of nine Grassroots divisions, guiding two-year-old pacing filly Mattjestic Tempo to an impressive 1:54.3 score over Bad Lightning and Vermilion Bird. After sitting fourth for much of the mile, McNair tipped Mattjestic Tempo into the outer lane heading by the half and the Royal Mattjesty daughter sprinted home to a two length victory. "She raced in the Gold last week and got a piece of it so I figured she had a big shot at winning," said McNair of the Blake MacIntosh trainee. "That was a big mile tonight. It was really, really windy up here tonight; a big head wind. "It was really windy down the backside, pretty much wore the ones on the front, and the ones first up, out," added the reinsman. "The weather wasn't as good as it looked on TV, that's for sure." Waterdown, ON resident MacIntosh shares ownership of Mattjestic Tempo with Stuart McIntosh of Essex, ON and Brett Authier of Wheatley, ON. The partners anted up $9,000 to acquire the daughter of $448,335 winner Daylon Tempo from last fall's Forest City Yearling Sale. With a runner-up finish in her career debut, her fifth-place result in the July 6 Gold event, and her Grassroots victory the filly has already earned $16,000. One race later McNair was back in the winner's circle, this time with a filly hammered down for $92,000 at the Lexington-Selected Yearling Sale to owner-trainer Jack Darling of Cambridge, ON. Starting from Post 7, McNair and Life Book paced by the quarter pole in the outer lane, found a spot on the rail heading by the half and then were three-wide at the three-quarters before accelerating down the stretch to the half-length victory. Life Book stopped the Georgian Downs teletimer at 1:56.4, reeling in pacesetter Active Lady and favourite Miss Print. "She went a pretty good trip too, she was three wide early," said McNair. "I thought she may be third at the head of the stretch, but she mowed them down." The daughter of Shadow Play is out of $133,217 winner Give Me Life, who has already produced three $200,000-plus winners. Life Book made her debut in the July 9 Grassroots season opener at Mohawk Racetrack, finishing fifth. McNair completed the driving hat trick with MacIntosh trainee Sports Expert, who captured her first lifetime start in 1:56.1, besting My Rhythm Of Rhyme and No Shadows. Starting from Post 1 Sports Expert landed in third through the early going, and McNair sent her after the leader heading for the halfway marker, reaching the front before the 1:26.4 three-quarters. "I didn't want to drive her like that tonight, but I just got away in a bad spot - being first up and battling the one all the way down the backside - and she won pretty handy," noted the Guelph, ON resident. "She's going to be a pretty nice filly I think." MacIntosh, Touch Stone Farms of Guelph, and 30-Plus Stable of Trenton, ON purchased the Sportswriter filly, a full-sister to last season's multiple Gold Series winner Sporting The Look, from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale for $20,000. "I'm happy with the ones I'm driving," said McNair. "I've got some nice ones." The other six divisions also featured some well-bred, talented fillies. Bourbon Seelster kicked things off, capturing the first division in 1:58.1 for driver Mike Saftic of Campbellville, ON, trainer Robert Manders and owners Scott and Keith Manders of Watford, ON. The Camluck miss - a $14,000 yearling purchase from the Forest City Yearling Sale - bested Machioda and Icthelight Hanover. Twin B Virtue and driver Jody Jamieson of Moffat, ON captured the second split, with a 1:56.2 effort, over Selling the Dream and Cracklin Rosie. It was the first lifetime start for the Badlands Hanover daughter, a $30,000 purchase out of the Canadian Yearling Sale by trainer Dave Menary of Cambridge, Brad Gray of Dundas and Michael Guerriero of Puslinch, ON. The filly is out of $116,833 winner What An Attitude, who has already produced six $100,000-plus winners. Dr. Ian Moore of Guelph, Sally MacDonald of Souris, PEI, Paul MacDonald of Toronto, ON and Shirley Yeung of Toronto offered $52,000 for Bold Amoretto at the Harrisburg Sale, and the daughter of Big Jim and $1.6 million winner Armbro Amoretto captured her first Grassroots trophy on Sunday. The filly and driver Chris Christoforou of Campbellville hit the wire in 1:56.1, one and one-quarter lengths ahead of Boozer Bruiser and Jimmys Little Girl. Milton resident Sylvain Filion steered Mayhem Seelster to a 1:57.2 win over Noone To Depend On and Rosy Outlook in the sixth tilt. Tony O'Sullivan of Cambridge trains the Mach Three daughter for Domenic Chiaravalle of Hamilton, ON, who selected her from the Forest City Yearling Sale for $55,000. Division eight went to Dewar N Soda and Mike Saftic, who went gate-to-wire in 1:56.1 for trainer Marcel Barrieau and owners Joseph Wilkie and Wayne MacRae of Fall River, NS. The daughter of Badlands Hanover and $233,166 winner Hasty Dewar was a $16,000 purchase at Harrisburg. Glorious Delight and Divas Image finished second and third. Tempus Seelster and trainer-driver Travis Henry captured the final Grassroots trophy of the evening with a 1:55.3 effort, one and one-quarter lengths ahead of Heavenly Hill and Buttermilk Hanover. Benbar Stables of Oakville, ON Glen Wark of St. Catharines, ON and Craig Wood of Waterdown share ownership of the daughter of Big Jim and The Patriot ($623,324), acquiring her for $10,000 from the Harrisburg Sale. The two-year-old pacing fillies make their third Grassroots start at Clinton Raceway on Aug. 9. Ontario Sires Stakes action keeps rolling at Georgian Downs, with three Gold Series divisions of two-year-old trotting colts slated for Tuesday, July 21. The trotters are featured in Races 1, 4, and 8 on Tuesday's program, which gets under way at 7:15 pm. Ontario Horse Racing

It’s summer time! There’s nothing better than BBQs, spending time with good people sharing laughs and ff you’re looking for something to do that can involve everyone, I highly recommend going to Georgian Downs. Georgian Downs is located on the west side of the 400 highway in Innisfil, Ontario. Approximately 45 minutes north of Toronto. With cottage season in full effect, the drive may be an hour and a half, but still worth it for the experience and great atmosphere. Visiting Georgian Downs is quite different to watching the races at Woodbine. At Woodbine one would be watching the pacers and trotters from a mile away, whereas Georgian offers fans the chance to stand at the fence, about 10-20 feet away from the thundering action. Saturday night racing offers fans a chance to have a full dinner buffet. Be sure to make a reservation! My greatest experience when visiting is how down to earth everyone is. Not just the horsemen and women, but the servers, tellers and even the bartenders. It’s a fun time and everyone is welcomed. Unlike bigger venues, at Georgian you’re one of the regular folk whether you are betting $2 or $200. When hanging out outside between races, fans can easily look into the paddocks facing south.  You are still about 40 feet away, but one can easily appreciate all the hard work that goes on. Plus, fans can always shout out to the favorite driver and if they’re not busy, they would be happy come over for a picture and/or sign an autograph. So always keep your program with you! One delight I treasure is sitting at the bar enjoying a refreshing beverage and seeing many drivers and trainers coming into venue once they’re done racing. It’s great listening to their stories from past races. When chatting, even the most basic and common race they are discussing ends up sounding like they are talking about the Molson Pace or North America Cup. It’s awesome! There is no way you can leave without a smile. A big thank you to Bob McClure, Alfie Carroll, Scott Young and trainer Craig Gilmour for taking the time to chat. Georgian Downs is a summer track racing Saturdays, Sundays and Tuesdays. One thing I can say for Georgian Downs is it’s about quality time, the type of time you can treasure. Of course it wouldn’t be proper if I did not recommend a food choice and I highly recommend the chicken wings.  They are plump and have a nice batter coating that comes in a variety of flavors which are not over powering. Happy racing my friends! By Roderick Balgobin, for

On Tuesday evening fans at the harness racing meeting at Georgian Downs experienced a moment of deja vu when Bob McClure piloted three-year-old trotting filly Judy The Beauty to her first win of the season in the last of seven Ontario Sires Stakes Grassroots divisions. "I won my first Grassroots with her almost a year ago today at this track," recalled McClure, who piloted Judy The Beauty to her first lifetime win in a division of that July 22, 2014 Grassroots event. The pair went on to capture one more Grassroots trophy last season, with Judy The Beauty earning $31,320 and McClure's mounts reaching the $1 million mark for the first time in his career. This season McClure has chosen to concentrate on driving every card at Georgian Downs and Grand River Raceway, so Tuesday was the first stakes event he has partnered with Judy The Beauty. Starting from Post 1 McClure was content to get away mid-pack and watch the pacesetters battle to a :28.2 quarter and :56.3 half. Heading by the 1:27 three-quarters the 24-year-old reinsman tipped Judy The Beauty into the outer lane and the pair steadily reeled in the front-runners, reaching the wire half a length ahead of favourite Railee Priti and Ill Stay Here in 1:57.2. "She's just a very nice filly to drive, even last year when she was a two-year-old it was just like I was driving a three or four-year-old because she was just so smart," said McClure. "She really makes life easy because you can leave or race from off." "Last year towards the end she seemed to have a few growing pains and this year she's really filled out, she's got a more powerful stride," continued the Orangeville, ON resident. "I would just say she's a lot stronger, and she'll continue to get better because she still is just a touch green." McClure crafted the win, a personal best for the Muscle Mass daughter, for trainer Keith Jones of Midland, ON and owner Randy Zhok of Dover Centre, ON. The victory boosted Judy The Beauty up the division standings, moving her into a tie for third with 100 points. While McClure would like to maintain his successful partnership with Judy The Beauty, he has been turning down Ontario Sires Stakes mounts this summer in an effort to achieve a different goal. "I'm leading driver at Grand River and Georgian right now, and I'm trying to hold that, and it's hard when you have to leave on Saturday nights to go to stake races," explained the young reinsman. "I'm trying not to get too far away from them." "It's hard to turn down stake drives, but I'm trying to keep most of my business there right now." If McClure can maintain his leading driver status through the Georgian Downs and Grand River Raceway meets this season, he hopes that level of success will allow him to pursue a few more Ontario Sires Stakes opportunities in 2016. In addition to McClure and Judy The Beauty's repeat performance, six other fillies took home Grassroots trophies from Georgian Downs on Tuesday. La Bella Rosa captured the first Grassroots division in commanding style, sailing from Post 6 to the finish without seeing a challenger. The Holiday Road filly and river Mario Baillargeon hit the wire nine and one-half lengths on top in 1:56.3. Lady Caterina and Magic Dancing finished second and third. The win was La Bella Rosa's second straight in Grassroots action and vaulted her to the top of the division standings with 108 points. Reaume Bouvier of Guelph, ON conditions La Bella Rosa for breeder Bella Fortuna Stables of Laval, QC and Patricia McGuirl Bouvier of Guelph. Campbellville, ON resident Mike Saftic piloted fan favourite Renegade Magic to a 1:57 victory in the second division for trainer Ted MacDonnell of Allenford, ON and owner-breeder Jeff and Lori Thomson of Chesley, ON. Kadabra daughter Renegade Magic hit the wire two lengths ahead of Cincinnati Miss and California Rachel. Sumthintotalkabout went gate-to-wire from Post 9 in the third division, battling all the way to the wire for a neck victory over favourite Tymal Signature and Ladyone in 1:57. Arthur, ON resident Trevor Henry guided the Muscle Mass filly to her second straight Grassroots victory for trainer Steve Bossence of London, ON and his partner Stephen Palermo of Brampton, ON. The fourth division saw Holiday Road daughter Meadow Seelster drop down from the Gold Series to find her first Ontario Sires Stakes victory, cruising home a seven length winner over Aunt Lottie and Sheguindah. Robert Shepherd engineered the 1:56.1 mile, the quickest of the seven Grassroots divisions, for trainer Bill Budd of Waterdown, ON and owner William Dixon of Caledon, ON. Hape also posted her first Grassroots win with a 1:58.2 clocking in the fifth division, besting favourite Summers Jewel and Tyrone Zoey. Moffat, ON resident Jack Moiseyev trains and drives the Pilgrims Taj filly for Joanne Colville of Moffat and Nancy MacNevin of Essex, ON. Luc Ouellette and Allies Gift controlled the pace from start to finish in the sixth division, cruising home two lengths ahead of Flexceptional and Pinky The Intern in a personal best 1:57.1. The Campbellville resident drives and trains the Holiday Road daughter for Ecuries Richelieu Inc. of Venise-En-Quebec, QC. The three-year-old trotting fillies make their fourth Grassroots start at Mohawk Racetrack on August 10. Ontario Sires Stakes excitement returns to Georgian Downs this Sunday, July 19 with the second Grassroots event for the two-year-old pacing fillies. Ontario Horse Racing

If the performances in Sunday night's Gold Series season opener at the harness racing meeting at Georgian Downs were any indication, Ontario has produced another world class group of two-year-old trotting fillies. Caprice Hill established the lofty standard for the evening in the first $52,500 division with a commanding gate-to-wire victory in 1:55.2. Allentown, NJ resident Yannick Gingras made his first-ever trip to Georgian Downs for the race, steering the daughter of Kadabra and Bramasole to the win for trainer Tony Alagna of Manalapan, NJ and owner Tom Hill of Lancashire, GB. "I baby raced her the first time (June 15) and I told Tony I'd like to stay with her, she showed me abilities that day," said Gingras. "She has a beautiful mouth on her, and great gaited, and she had all kinds of power, so I was very high on her and she proved me right tonight." Going unchallenged around the Georgian Downs five-eighths oval, Caprice Hill hit the wire four and one-quarter lengths ahead of Sky Angel and Las Vegas Seelster. Her 1:55.2 clocking was just two-fifths of a second off the 1:55 Ontario Sires Stakes record for two-year-old trotting fillies on a five-eighths mile track, set by the great Bee A Magician at Georgian Downs in an October, 2012 Gold Series event. "She's got the whole package, let's put it that way. She's got as much speed as anything, but her manners are very, very good." "You can do whatever you want with her," added Gingras. "Last baby race (June 27) I left and let somebody go, and came back in the stretch; just whatever you throw at her she's very professional about it, so I think that's her best quality right now." Trainer Alagna selected the half-sister to $278,868 winner Bramalea Hanover out of last fall's Harrisburg Yearling Sale and owner Tom Hill issued the winning bid at $55,000. Since then Caprice Hill has been a star pupil for Alagna and his mother Donna Lee Ozment. "She's a really special filly." "My mom trained her this winter in Chicago and she came out to us this spring and she's been fantastic from the get go," said Alagna. "I'm very happy with where we're at right now." In addition to the Ontario Sire Stakes, Alagna says Caprice Hill has a full complement of open stake races on her calendar so long as she stays healthy and continues to thrive on the racetrack. Also delivering an impressive front-end performance was locally-owned Could It Be Magic, who cruised home a 1:56.4 winner in the third division for Alliston, ON resident Fred Brayford and trainer-driver Wayne Henry of Arthur, ON. Unchallenged through fractions of :29, :59.2 and 1:28, Could It Be Magic trotted under the wire six lengths ahead of Devils Advocate and Danish Darby. "She can really get out of there off the gate, and then Wayne seems to be able to get control and they kind of respect her I guess," said Brayford. "Then when he needs the last quarter he just kind of lets her trot and so far she's been pulling away from them." Brayford and Henry acquired the daughter of Kadabra and $233,554 winner In The Mean Time for $18,000 from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale and Brayford says the filly seemed like a natural from her earliest lessons. "He (Henry) trains in Florida. I was down there for most of the winter and I used to go out and see her train, and she just seemed to be kind of a natural right from the start," explained Brayford. "She liked to trot. She didn't spend much time breaking, touch wood." Sunday's win was the second for Could It Be Magic, who also captured a conditioned event at Mohawk Racetrack on July 2. In the fourth division Emoticon Hanover stormed up the stretch to post a 1:56.3 victory and make it a hat trick for trotting sire Kadabra. The filly and driver Sylvain Filion of Milton, ON reeled in pacesetter and fan favourite Ready Any Time and Magical Wonder to record the one and one-quarter length victory for trainer Luc Blais of Lochaber Ouest, QC and owner Determination of Montreal, QC. The first foal from former Ontario Sires Stakes star Emmylou Who, a winner of 660,354 during her racing career, Emoticon Hanover was a $165,000 purchase from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale. The other Gold trophy went home from Georgian Downs with One Too Many, who was awarded the win when it was ruled that she was impeded by Silky Flashy Nfast in the stretch. Silky Flashy Nfast was moved back to second and Liberty Lane finished third in the 1:58.2 mile. Guelph, ON resident Anthony MacDonald drives and trains One Too Many for Rene Allard of Milford, PA, who purchased the Manofmanymissions daughter for $14,000 from the Canadian Yearling Sale. The two-year-old trotting fillies make their second Gold Series start at Mohawk Racetrack on July 23, while Ontario Sires Stakes excitement returns to Georgian Downs on Tuesday, July 14 with seven Grassroots divisions for the three-year-old trotting fillies. Ontario Horse Racing

Two-year-old trotting colts were the headliners at the harness racing meeting at Georgian Downs on Saturday evening, with 57 colts battling in seven Grassroots divisions. French Bastille captured the first Grassroots trophy of the freshman trotting colt campaign, hitting the wire in 2:01.1 for trainer-driver Mark Steacy. French Bastille reeled in pacesetter and fan favourite Clone The Tone through the stretch, reaching the wire one-quarter length on top. Stormont Viceroy finished two more lengths back in third. Lansdowne, ON resident Steacy conditions French Bastille for Landmark 8 Racing Stable of Kingston, ON, Hudson Standardbred Stable Inc. of Hudson, QC and Bridle Path Stables Ltd. of Ossining, NY. The partners acquired the son of Kadabra and $639,981 winner Brigham Dream for $55,000 at last fall's Lexington Selected Yearling Sale. In the second $18,000 division Mass Balance got a pocket trip behind pacesetter Wildwild Men before rolling out in the stretch and accelerating away to a three and one-quarter length victory in 1:59.3. Wildwild Men trotted into second, with Terrain Seelster earning the third spot when Holiday Party made a late break and was placed from third back to fourth. Bob McClure piloted the Muscle Mass son to the win for trainer Chris Beaver of Delaware, OH and owner Synerco Ventures Inc. of Toronto, ON, and Georgian Downs' leading reinsman was impressed with the trotter. "He's a very nice young trotter with the attitude of a four-year-old," said McClure, who resides in Orangeville, ON. "He has a bright future." The third division was the first of two captured by driver Travis Henry of Brantford, ON and trainer Shannon Henry of Arthur, ON. Starting from Post 8, Travis Henry sent Zagster straight to the front and the pair never looked back, sailing home one and one-quarter length winners in 2:02.1. Money Mission and Muscle Time rounded out the top three. Muscle Mass gelding Zagster is owned by Trevor Henry Stables Inc. of Arthur, ON and John MacLeod of Kincardine and was a bargain $3,000 purchase at the Lexington Selected Yearling Sale last fall. Through two qualifiers and one Grassroots appearance the colt is undefeated. Im A Mate scored the quickest mile of the seven divisions, trotting under the wire in 1:59.1 for driver Don Dupont and trainer Marie Dupont of Loxahatchee, FL. The fan favourite bested pacesetter Rose Run Rudi by three and one-quarter lengths with Romeo another length back in third. Roy Dobbins of Bryant, AL bred and owns Im A Mate, a son of Muscle Mass and Im A Checkmate. Among the colt's half-siblings is $799,117 winner Prayer I Am. Travis and Shannon Henry returned to the winner's circle following the fifth division when United BI caught pacesetter Chestnut Schofield at the wire. Just one-quarter of a length separated the colts at the 2:00.1 finish, with Eyeseenow seven lengths to the rear in third. Nick Petrusich of Hamilton, ON and Trevor Henry Stables Inc. share ownership of United BI, who was a $35,000 acquisition at the Lexington Selected Yearling Sale. Georgies Pockets went gate-to-wire in the sixth division, stopping the Georgian Downs teletimer at 1:59.4. Asterix and Dynamic Edge were four and one-quarter lengths back in second and third. Milton, ON resident Steve Condren crafted the victory for trainer Melvin Turcotte of Coconut Creek, FL and owner-breeder M T Pockets Stables of Pompano Beach, FL. The colt is the son of Muscle Mass and former OSS competitor Striking Pockets. The final Grassroots trophy of the evening was captured by Cool Creek Victory, who toured the Georgian Downs oval in 2:02.1, besting Dial K and Some Peach. Eddie Green of Ohsweken, ON owns, trains and drives the son of Windsong Espoir, who was a $30,000 purchase from the Canadian Yearling Sale. The two-year-old trotting colts will make their second Grassroots start at Clinton Raceway on Sunday, July 19. Georgian Downs fans will be treated to the Gold Series debut of the two-year-old trotting fillies on Sunday evening. The freshman fillies are featured in Races 2, 4, 6, and 8 on the July 12 program, which gets under way at 6 pm. Ontario Horse Racing

Jody Jamieson had the winning touch at the harness racing meeting at Georgian Downs on Saturday evening, piloting four sophomore pacing colts to Grassroots victory. Jamieson kicked off his successful evening in the first $18,000 Grassroots division, guiding Dialamara to a three and one-quarter length triumph over Feeling Cam Lucky and Naturescape. The 1:51.1 clocking was the quickest of the seven Grassroots divisions and was a new personal best for Dialamara. "Dialamara was really good," said Moffat, ON resident Jamieson. "He stepped around the leader there in two strides and was strong right to the wire." The Lisa Mara son started his Ontario Sires Stakes season with a third-place result in the Gold Series opener, but trainer Patrick Fletcher of Hagersville, ON moved him down to the Grassroots for the June 21 event at Clinton Raceway and Dialamara finished fifth. Saturday's victory was Dialamara's first on the provincial stakes circuit, although he was the winner of the WEGZ Final at Woodbine Racetrack on March 21, and the runner-up in both the Count B and Youthful Finals at the Toronto oval this spring. John Lamers of Ingersoll, ON owns the winner of $129,032. Jamieson made his second trip to the winner's circle with his own gelding, Make Some Luck, in the third Grassroots division. The pair circled out three-wide at the three-quarters and powered down the stretch to a half-length victory over favourite His Boy Elroy and Legion Of Boom. The 1:52.3 clocking was a personal best for the Camluck gelding. "I have yet to give him a decent drive, but he has overcome it almost every time," said Jamieson, who was forced to regroup at the start when Make Some Luck went off-stride briefly after making contact with the gate. "We couldn't be happier with his effort." Jamieson's father Carl conditions Make Some Luck, who now boasts two wins and one third in Grassroots action and is currently tied for second spot in the three-year-old pacing colt standings with 112 points . Three regular season events remain on the three-year-old pacing colt and gelding calendar. The reinsman's third win came in the fifth division with Antar Phil, who cruised home a five and one-half length victor in 1:53.2. Windsong Lord and fan favourite Artful Way settled for second and third. "He started from a tough spot in the nine-hole but the trip worked out perfect, there was lots of movement," noted Jamieson. "We ended up being second over up the backside and I swung him over and he just sprinted home from there. He was really good." The win was Antar Phil's second straight, but his first in Ontario Sires Stakes action. The Sportswriter son is trained by Mark Steacy of Lansdowne, ON for owner-breeder Hudson Standardbred Stable Inc. of Hudson, QC. Jamieson completed his driving quartet in the final Grassroots division with his father's horse Sporting The Look. The fan favourites tipped out of the outer lane and sprinted home to a 1:52.1 victory, two and one-quarter lengths ahead of The Fire Within and Bob Ben And John. The fifth-ranked horse in the province last season, Sporting The Look had failed to find the winner's circle in his first four starts this season, so Jamieson was pleased to see the Sportswriter son's luck change. "He's been run into, or I've run into somebody else, in every start this year with him. He's hooked wheels twice, got run into once, that's three starts, so he was due," Jamieson said. "He got a perfect trip too and paced hard to the wire, so it was real good." Rockwood, ON resident Carl Jamieson shares ownership of Sporting The Look with 30 Plus Stable of Trenton, ON and Thomas Kyron of Toronto, ON. In addition to his wins, Jamieson's other two Grassroots mounts, Sports Lightning and Win One Soon, finished second and third. "I had some horses that were favoured and it worked out," reflected the driver. "Lots of times it doesn't work out, and tonight it did." The other three divisions went to Mach Code, Western Bayama and Deetzy. Mach Code and driver Mike Saftic of Campbellville, ON were one length winners over Sports Lightning and Regal Sight, stopping the Georgian Downs teletimer at 1:52.4. Jeff and Lori Thomson bred, own and train the Mach Three gelding, who sits tied for second in the division standings with Make Some Luck. Western Bayama battled to a head victory over Sports Bettor and Lancaster Park in the fourth division. The Lis Mara son hit the wire in a personal best 1:53.4 for driver Anthony MacDonald of Guelph, ON, trainer Stephane Larocque of Carlisle, ON and owner-breeders Bayama Farms Inc. of Saint-Andre-D'Argenteuil, QC. Deetzy also won a nail-biter, getting a neck in front of Southwind Indy and Win One Soon at the 1:53.2 finish. Thornton, ON resident Stephen Byron engineered the Jeremes Jet son's first lifetime victory for trainer Ken Sucee of Bowmanville, ON and Shelby Novick of Delray Beach, FL. The three-year-old pacing colts and geldings make their fourth Grassroots start at Mohawk Racetrack on July 31. Ontario Sires Stakes excitement returns to Georgian Downs on Tuesday, July 7 with the Grassroots debut of the two-year-old trotting fillies. Five divisions of novice trotters will be featured, going postward as Races 1, 2, 5, 6, and 8 on the 7:15 pm program. Ontario Horse Racing

JUNE 13, 2015 - Last season's harness racing Grassroots champion Stonebridge Quest took a direct route back to the Ontario Sires Stakes winner's circle in the three-year-old pacing filly season opener at Georgian Downs on Saturday evening. Starting from Post 1 in the second $18,000 Grassroots division, Stonebridge Quest and driver Nick Steward took immediate command and reached the first quarter in :26.4. From there the Camluck daughter rolled to a :57 half, and a 1:25 three-quarters before cruising home to a two and three-quarter length victory in a personal best 1:53. Windsun Chanel and fan favourite Cottonwood Creek rounded out the top three. "She started off the season relatively slow, but she seems to have resumed her form," said trainer Andrew McCabe after the race. "It maybe just took a few starts to get her condition back." McCabe conditions Stonebridge Quest for Glenview Livestock Ltd. of Guelph-Eramosa, ON and breeder Angie Stiller of Arva, ON. Out of Stiller's prolific mare Glacier Express, Stonebridge Quest is a full-sister to $801,785 winner Stonebridge Tonic, $530,665 winner Stonebridge On Ice, and $122,923 winner Stonebridge Breeze. "She's following in the footsteps of a great family," noted McCabe. "If she can be half as successful as they were/are, we'll be ecstatic." The Rockwood, ON resident added that Stonebridge Quest's victory is a team effort that includes Glenview Livestock manager Shaun McDonald and the filly's caretaker Lacey Lamoureux. Through four starts this season Stonebridge Quest has now tallied one win, one second and one third for earnings of $16,650. Last year's Super Final winner also made her sophomore Ontario Sires Stakes debut at Georgian Downs on Saturday. Code One Hanover and driver Mike Saftic led from start to finish in the third division, holding off Warrawee Qually in the stretch to secure the 1:52.3 victory. Machmeter finished third. Cambridge, ON resident Jack Darling owns and trains Code One Hanover, who had also failed to find the winner's circle in her first four starts this season. The Sportswriter daughter captured one Gold Leg and the Super Final at two, banking $182,325. Saturday's Grassroots victory bumped Code One Hanover's lifetime earnings to $199,975. Promesse Duharas wove through traffic in the stretch to grab the evening's first Grassroots trophy for driver-trainer Stuart Sowerby of Guelph, ON. The Art Colony daughter reeled in Black Queen and Wicked Speed to claim the one length victory in a personal best 1:55.1. Saturday's appearance was Promesse Duharas' first in Ontario Sires Stakes action and her eighth lifetime start. Since her March debut the filly boasts a record of four wins and two seconds, banking $21,175 for owner-breeder Haras De L'Estrie Inc. of Dunham, QC. Twin B Honour captured the fourth division, holding off Amazing Control and OK Heavenly for a neck victory in 1:53.3. Alfie Carroll guided the Sportswriter daughter to her first sophomore victory for trainer Victor Puddy and owner Percy Elkins of Milton, ON. Elkins now has three Grassroots trophies on his mantel courtesy of Twin B Honour, who was a two-time winner last season. OK Heartbeat got a neck in front of pacesetter Southwind Luna to earn her first lifetime victory in the fifth Grassroots division. Clarke Steacy drove the Mach Three daughter to the 1:54 victory for his father, trainer Mark Steacy, and owners Oak Knoll Stables of Campbellcroft, ON, Higgs Boys Stable of Gananoque, ON, Conrad Leber of Montreal, QC and Wheelhouse Racing Stable of Mississauga, ON. Southwind Geisha rounded out the top three. The final Grassroots trophy went home with Southwind Mischief, who stalked pacesetter Franney Love Dat for much of the mile, pulling away in the stretch to a three length victory in 1:54.2. Sassafras Girl closed well to be third. A Gold Leg winner at two, Southwind Mischief was piloted to her first win of 2015 by Robert Shepherd. The Sportswriter daughter is trained by Casie Coleman for her partners in the West Wins Stable of Cambridge, ON, breeder Southwind Farms LLC of Pennington, NJ and Adriano Sorella of Milton, ON. The three-year-old pacing fillies make their second Grassroots start at Mohawk Racetrack on July 24. Ontario Sires Stakes excitement returns to Georgian Downs on Saturday, July 4 with the third Grassroots event of the season for the three-year-old pacing colts. Ontario Horse Racing 90 Sheppard Avenue East, Suite 200, Toronto, ON M2N 0A4 416-213-1800  

TORONTO, June 1 - The Standardbred Alliance today announced a rotating Jackpot Hi-5 wager to be held between the harness racing tracks Grand River Raceway and Georgian Downs. Beginning with Grand River's opening card this evening (June 1), a Jackpot Hi-5 wager will be offered on the final race of the night. If there are multiple winning tickets, half of the pool will be carried over to the Jackpot Hi-5 wager on the final race Tuesday night at Georgian Downs. The Jackpot Hi-5 carryover will then alternate between both tracks until a single-winning ticket correctly hits the Jackpot Hi-5 or a mandatory payout evening is announced. The Jackpot Hi-5 wager has rapidly grown in popularity throughout the Ontario racing scene since being added to the Woodbine Entertainment Group wagering menu in October of 2013. The Jackpot Hi-5 wager requires a horseplayer to correctly select the top-five finishers in order. If there are multiple winning tickets, 50% of that evening's pool is split among the winning tickets, while the other half is carried over to the following card. In order to take home the entire Jackpot, there must be only a single-winning ticket to correctly select the top-five finishers in order. A special mandatory payout night can be announced, in which the entire carryover is split among the evening's winning tickets. The mandatory Jackpot Hi-5 payout night has been responsible for several of the largest handles in the history of Standardbred racing at the Woodbine Entertainment Group. Most recently, a mandatory payout on a Jackpot Hi-5 carryover of $847,000 led to a record $2.5 million in new money being wagered into the pool on Saturday, April 4 at Woodbine. Following takeout, more than $3 million was paid out to horseplayers. The new rotating Jackpot Hi-5 at Grand River Raceway and Georgian Downs will offer a $0.20 minimum wager and a takeout of 15 per cent. The wager will be offered on each night of live racing at both tracks. Grand River Raceway will offer live racing every Monday, Wednesday and Friday until the end of September. Live racing will be conducted at Georgian Downs every Sunday, Tuesday and Saturday until the end of August. Post time for each card of live racing at Grand River Raceway is 6:30 p.m., while post time at Georgian Downs is 6 p.m. on Sundays and 7:15 p.m. on Tuesdays and Saturdays. Mark McKelvie - WEG Communications/Standardbred Alliance

The Innisfil, ON track will offer 39 live harness racing cards this summer through Aug. 30, including the Honourable Earl Rowe Memorial Trot on Aug. 29. Georgian Downs in Innisfil, ON will open its 15th season on Tuesday and will feature 39 cards of live harness racing through Aug. 30. Racing will be conducted every Saturday, Sunday and Tuesday with 6 p.m. first-race post times on Sundays and a 7:15 p.m. starting post the other two nights. Tuesday’s opening night card is a bit of a soft opening, with the five-eighths mile track offering its Welcome Back Day promotion on Saturday (June 6). Patrons that purchase a program will receive ballots for draws for both a mini beer fridge or for a chance to take a turn in the track’s money machine. There will also be HPI giveaways and $1 hot dogs and $1 pop. July 18 will be Georgian Downs’ Horse Festival & BBQ. The First Bet is On Us team will be on hand, as will a live country band on the patio. The track will feature a mini horse race, a carded Racing Under Saddle event and a kids’ zone offering ice cream for a minimal donation to Habitat for Humanity. The charity will also receive the proceeds of a 50/50 draw conducted that night. Georgian’s signature event, The Honourable Earl Rowe Memorial Trot will be held on Aug. 29 as part of the track’s Customer Appreciation Night. Apart from free cupcakes (while supplies last), $1 hot dogs and $1 pop, the track will draw for patrons to take a turn in the money machine. For more information, check out Georgian Downs’ OHR page or the track’s website: For more information please contact: Dave Briggs Standardbred Communications Ontario Horse Racing

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