The top competitors in the 2013 Alberta Sires Stakes program will meet for their final battle of the season on Saturday as Northlands Park hosts the $300,000 Battle of Alberta Super Finals. First race post time on Saturday is 1 p.m. with the first of four $75,000 Super Finals set to begin in race eight. Two-year-old pacing fillies will kick off the battles with Triple Action, who boasts a perfect ABSS triple heading into the final, as the 2-1 morning line favourite. Philip Giesbrecht will drive the Brandons Cowboy-The Three Of Us filly from post two for trainer Joe Ratchford and Calgary owner Raggs To Riches. Blue Eyed Cowboy headlines the two-year-old pacing colt field as the early 2-1 favourite for driver Bill Tainsh Jr. and Lamont, Alta. trainer/owner Rod Starkewski. The Brandons Cowboy-Eicarls Blue Eyes gelding will also leave from post two. He is the division's fastest pacer thanks to his ASHA Colt Stakes win on Oct. 13 in an Alberta Downs track record clocking of 1:53.3. Meanwhile, 3-1 second choice Comes Home First will be looking to wrap up a perfect ABSS season for driver Jim Marino and trainer Lance Ward. The Brandons Cowboy-Cinderella Came colt, who was scratched sick from his last assignment (the Premiers Colt Stakes on Oct. 25), is owned by the J J J Stables of Aldergrove, B.C. Starkewski's Crackers Hot Shot will be seeking redemption in the three-year-old pacing filly division after a near perfect freshman campaign, which ended with a heart-breaking sixth-place finish in last year's Super Final due to an early break in stride. She's banked over $100,000 in purses during her sophomore year with victories in the first two Princess and Diamond sires stakes legs. Tainsh Jr. will also drive the Camcracker-Shesahotshot miss, who drew the popular post two. She is the early 2-1 favourite. Premium Attaction will look to defend his Super Final title in the three-year-old pacing colt division for horseman Kelly Hoerdt and partner Blair Corbeil of Beaumont, Alta. The Clintons Cigar-Themaneattacktion colt will be looking to rebound after a break in last week's Maverick leg, his only off-the-board finish of his sophomore stakes campaign. The $192,441 career earner has drawn post six and is the 5-2 second choice. The Campbell family's Play Me Right is the slight 2-1 favourite after winning the Maverick final, but will have to overcome a post eight start. Brandon Campbell will drive the Ameripan Gigolo-Clintons Delight gelding for his father Sanford, mother Debbie and girlfriend Jodi Loftus. Saturday's card also includes four $20,000 Consolations and an Open Pace, which includes former Super Final champions Flak Jacket, Wrangler Betonme, and Timberline Court amongst the field. To view Saturday's harness racing entries, click on the following link: Saturday Entries - Northlands Park Click here for free, printable program pages for Saturday's harness racing card, courtesy TrackIT. Reprinted with permission from www.standardbredcanada.ca
ALBERTA DOWNS National Debt became the fastest two-year-old pacer in Alberta Downs history on Sunday afternoon in just his second start, defeating a field of more experienced rivals in 1:53.3. The Allamerican Native colt is now undefeated in two starts for trainer/driver Kelly Hoerdt and co-owners Blair and Erna Corbeil of Beaumont, Alta. National Debt sat gapped out in fifth for most of the mile in a $4,500 conditioned pace while favoured sophomore Bettor In The Bank carved out fractions of :27.4, :57 and 1:25.4 in search of his fifth straight win. But National Debut unleashed :26.4 final quarter speed to propel him into the top spot. His winning margin was more than three lengths. Bettor In The Bank settled for second and the pocket-sitting three-year-old Cabo Real finished third. National Debt lowered the freshman track record by two-fifths of a second. The former mark was set by two-year-old pacing colt Wrangler Betonme in 2011. Alberta-sired two-year-olds took the stage later on the card in three Alberta Shooting Star divisions, ranging in purses from $18,767 to $19,067, and another record was set. Blue Eyed Cowboy ($6.40) established a new 1:54.4 track record for two-year-old pacing geldings as he overtook the pacesetting Pass The Port in deep stretch and held off Outlaw Last Chance by a head. The Brandons Cowboy gelding shaved four-fifths of a second off The Big Heist's former record. Bill Tainsh Jr. was the winning driver for trainer/owner Rod Starkewski of Lamont, Alta. The win was Blue Eyed Cowboy's first in ABSS action and second from six pari-mutuel starts. The late sire Brandons Cowboy's legacy continues to live on as his offspring completed a sweep of the Shooting Star with other divisions going to J J J Stables' Comes Home First ($2.30), a 1:56.1 winner for driver Jim Marino and trainer Lance Ward, and the maiden-breaking Incognito Cowboy ($12.50), a 1:58.1 winner for trainer/driver Keith Clark, who also co-owns with Doris McDougall of Cochrane, Alta. and Calgary's Verne Rea and Laurence Swalm. Both posted win margins of more than six lengths. Comes Home First has now won all five of his pari-mutuel starts, including divisions in all three ABSS legs. The Alberta-sired two-year-old pacing colts and geldings will wrap up their ABSS season in the Battle of Alberta Super Finals on Saturday, Nov. 2 at Northlands Park In other action, Revolver ($6.90) and driver Brandon Campbell took the $8,500 top class in 1:53.1, scoring by nearly five lengths over favourite Cowboy Caper and Hoerdt. Glenn Lutz trains the six-year-old pacer, who notched his 20th career victory for the Estate of Harvey Poffenroth of Calgary. To view Sunday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Sunday Results - Alberta Downs. St. JOHN’S RACING Sophomore pacer Dustylane Wildbill took top honours winning the featured stakes event at St. John's Racing and Entertainment Centre on Sunday's harness racing card, which was sponsored by Meridian Farms. Dustylane Wildbill romped to a five and a quarter length victory, stopping the clock in a career-best clocking of 2:03 in the $2,200 featured sixth race for two and three-year-old Newfoundland-owned pacers. Freshmen Salmonier Storm and Son Of Rocknroll rounded out the top three finishers. Shane Forward was in the sulky for trainer Scott Forward and local owner Joanne Forward. The Meridian Farms-bred colt is a son of Ss Sand Dollar, who has won half of his 12 career starts. This week's $1,190 Preferred class, sponsored by Rene Allard, was also won by the driver-trainer team of Shane and Scott Forward as Inspired Art drew off by nine lengths in the stretch. Carl Stafford's eight-year-old pacer hit the wire in 2:01.3 with Muzzysenglishbaby and Machthemoment finishing second and third, respectively. Team Forward also won the opener with five-year-old pacing mare K Ngs Hurricane edging out Brandishing by a head in 2:11.3. Another Ss Sand Dollar offspring, the winner is owned by Christine Hedges and Jacqueline Smith, and bred by Meridian Farms. To view Sunday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Sunday Results - St. John's Racing. SUNBURY DOWNS Trainer/driver Paul MacLean worked out a perfect pocket trip aboard sophomore filly Ideal Odds to win the $18,700 final of the Late Bloomer Pacing Series on Sunday at Sudbury Downs. Stablemate Vijay Scam set the tempo with fractions of :29.3, 1:00.1 and 1:30 over the sloppy surface with the field stacking up into the stretch. But Ideal Odds came through to prevail in 2:02, scoring by three-quarters of a length over Hot N Shooting. Vijay Scam edged out Ok Eros and Fools Run Around for third one length behind. With a win in the opening leg of the series on Sept. 15 and a second-place finish by a nose in the Sept. 22 round, Ideal Odds was sent postward as the second choice on the odds board and returned $5.70 to win. After going winless in four starts as a freshman, she has only missed the board once in 14 starts this year. The Western Ideal filly has won six times while pushing his bankroll to $30,270 for owner B. Michael Timpano of Phelpston, Ont. Maclean also drove Mellow Jenny ($13.90) to a 2:02 victory in the $4,500 Fillies & Mares Preferred 2 Pace by a quarter-length over Carly Hollywood for trainer Philippe Belanger. Another Belanger trainee, Stable Eyes ($3.80), won the $4,200 Not Listed Preferred in rein to Mike MacNeill. She prevailed in 2:01.3 by half a length over No Teasing Me and MacLean. Sophomore gelding Mr Why ($8.70) and Wayne MacLean won the $7,500 Late Bloomer Consolation in 2:02.2 by two and three-quarter lengths. The Late Bloomer Series was for non-winners of one race or $15,000 (fillies and mares $18,750) lifetime as of Sept. 2, 2013. To view Sunday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Sunday Results - Sudbury Downs. TURO RACEWAY Three-year-old pacing colt The Rev led Sunday afternoon's Carl & Marg MacKenzie Memorial Stakes winners with a 1:56.3 triumph in the opening division at Truro Raceway. The MacKenzie Memorial was split into five $7,682 divisions for three-year-old colt and filly pacers. Trained and driven by Danny Romo, The Rev ($3.10) fought off J B Bolt through early fractions of :27.4 and: 56.4 in the first colt division and then drew clear en route to three-quarters in 1:27. The popular son of Western Paradise cruised home in :29.3 for the one and a half length triumph over pocket-sitter Forever Paradise and the wide rallying Watersides Kipper. The consistent colt now boasts seven wins and four seconds in 12 sophomore starts for Nova Scotia owners Robert Skinner, Jeffrey Skinner, Stephen Tufts, and the Glb Stable. Trainer/driver Kenny Arsenault took the other colt divisions with Untouchable One ($2.70) going wire-to-wire for his fifth win in a row in 1:57 and J J Nitro ($7.10) rallying three-wide off cover to prevail in 1:58. Arsenault was also in the sulky as Mike Campbell-conditioned Rose Valley ($5) went first over to win her filly division in 1:57.2. Icandothat ($4.30) front-stepped her way to victory lane in the other filly split in a matching time of 1:57.2 for trainer/driver Ryan Ellis. The Arsenault stable also collected a win in the $10,200 Nova Scotia Series Stakes for two-year-old colt pacers with the Hilliard Graves-owned and driven Waterside Light ($13) converting off a pocket trip to win by more than two lengths in 2:00.2. The win was the Lis Mara colt's fourth (consecutive) in seven starts. To view Sunday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Sunday Results - Truro Raceway. INVERNESS RACEWAY Junebugs Baby closed out Inverness Raceway's Sunday afternoon card of harness racing with a bang as he circled a field of six top Nova Scotia pacers and drew off to an impressive open length victory in the featured $3,750 Inverness Invitational Greg Sparling drove the four-year-old son of Western Paradise to the six length triumph in 1:57.2 over early race leaders Art I Special and Redmond Doucet. Lils Destiny and John Hawco rounded out the top three finishers. Dominion, N.S. horseman Fraser Turnball trains and co-owns the homebred with John Turnbull Jr. of Glace Bay, N.S. The Atlantic Sires Stakes graduate now boasts a career record reading 18-10-2 in 36 starts with earnings totalling $67,639. Junebugs Baby paid $3.40 to win as the bettors' choice. To view Sunday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Sunday Results - Inverness Raceway. SUMMERSIDE RACEWAY Big League and All Turain won their respective $3,500 first leg divisions of the Island Pacing Championship, presented by Meridian Farms, Sunday at Red Shores Summerside. Big League, owned by Johan Moase of Cornwall, P.E.I., gave Corey MacPherson his fourth winner of the day when he caught fraction-setter Wild Dragon at the head of lane and drove on to victory in 1:55.4. Leading Camdidate came flying late to grab second while Narragansett finished third. All Turain won his fourth in a row in the second division of the Island Pacing Championship for Brodie MacPhee in 1:55.1. MacPhee tipped the Trevor Hicken trainee off the back of Touch Of Lightning to capture his fifth win from 18 starts this season. Lee Hicken of Charlottetown co-owns the pacer with his trainer. Touch Of Lightning was right there for second while Lucky Encounter completed the triactor. War Cry Ranger won the Isabelle & Ivan Cameron Memorial in an impressive 1:57.2. Brian Andrew did the driving for his co-owners Bill and Blake Andrew. MacPherson’s other winners on the program came with No Pain Intended for Harold Hill, Lets Make Ideal owned by Mikeala Lustic, and Bizzy Izzy for trainer Jeff Wallace. MacPhee had a driving double on the program also winning with Selkirk Stable's Roscoes Child. The second leg of the Island Pacing Championship will take place on Saturday, October 5 at Charlottetown Driving Park with the final set for Sunday, October 13. To view Sunday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Sunday Results - Summerside Raceway. Reprinted with permission from www.standardbredcanada.ca
FRASER DOWNS Sea Deuce fought off favourite Big N Bad to win the $50,000 Tom Burke Memorial Pace for three-year-old pacing colts and geldings on Saturday night at Fraser Downs. With the inside post advantage in the field of eight, Sea Deuce and driver Serge Masse set up shop on the front end. The Gord Abbott trainee led the way past fractions of :28, :58.2 and 1:25.4 with Big N Bad and Bill Davis pulling the pocket down the backstretch. The top two were head-to-head at the third quarter mark and continued to wage war down the stretch with Sea Deuce prevailing by a head in 1:55.4. Big N Bad settled for runner-up honours while the winner's entrymate, Ideal Art and John Abbott, followed two lengths behind in third. Sea Deuce paid $6.10 to win as part of the Abbott entry sent off as the 2-1 second choice. Seaspray Stables Ltd. of Nanaimo, B.C. owns both Sea Deuce and Ideal Art with B. Michael Timpano of Phelpston, Ont. also sharing ownership of the winner. Sea Deuce is a homebred gelding sired by Armbro Deuce out of Cassidys Grin. Unraced as a freshman, Sea Deuce earned his first B.C. win from two provincial starts. He started his sophomore campaign in Ontario, where he earned his other victory at Woodbine Racetrack in February. Masse drove a total of four winners on the 12-race card. His other victories were with his own trainees, including the maiden-breaking freshman colt Great Quote ($12.80) in another close race in 1:59.1, the repeating Mares Open champion Phone Terror ($5.90) in 1:55.2, and open length winner Panic At The Disco ($3.20) in 1:57.3. To view Saturday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Saturday Results - Fraser Downs. ALBERTA DOWNS Driver Philip Giesbrecht steered a pair of popular Alberta Stardust winners on Saturday afternoon at Alberta Downs while Nighttraintovegas came close to the two-year-old pacing filly track record. Giesbrecht worked out similar trips for Triple Action and Sweet Sugar in their respective $18,767 Alberta Sires Stakes divisions, sending both favoured fillies to the lead past the opening quarter mark. Triple Action (Brandons Cowboy-The Three Of Us) took the lead down the backstretch and cruised to a two and a quarter length victory in 1:57.3 for trainer Joe Ratchford and owner Raggs To Riches of Aidrie, Alta. while Tim Brown trainee Sweet Sugar (Tajma Hall-Hide The Candy) was on the move at the quarter mark and romped to a three and three-quarter length score in a career-best equalling 1:58.3 for owners Sandra Brown of Langley, B.C. and Archie Melnyk of Sherwood Park, Alta. Triple Action completed a sweep of all three ABSS legs for two-year-old pacing fillies. Sweet Sugar is also undefeated in ABSS action although she has only competed in the last two events. With Brandon Campbell in the bike, Nighttraintovegas left from the outside post position in the fastest $18,467 division and drew off to a seven and three-quarter length victory in 1:55, just missing the track record for freshman fillies by one-fifth of a second. Richard Schneider trains Nighttraintovegas, a daughter of Camystic out of Midnight In Vegas who is five-for-six in her career. The near perfect filly boasts two wins in ABSS legs with her only blemish a second-place finish in the second round. She is owned by Dick Schneider of Sherwood Park, Alta. and Edmonton's David Halmosi. The Alberta Stardust is the final leg of the Alberta Sires Stakes for two-year-old pacing fillies. The top performers of the season will face off in the rich Battle of Alberta Super Finals on Saturday, Nov. 2 at Northlands Park. Top training honours on the day when to Kelly Hoerdt, who won three consecutive races with four-year-old gelding My World ($9.50), ABSS sophomore filly Emotions Run Wild ($5.30) and the streaking five-year-old mare Just Saucy ($2.30). To view Saturday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Saturday Results - Alberta Downs. NORTHSIDE DOWNS Barefoot Contessa survived an overland journey to pull off an 11-1 upset the $2,200 New Waterford Centennial Pace as the only mare in a field of eight on Saturday afternoon at Northside Downs. Barefoot Contessa and driver Ryan Campbell wore down the 3-2 favourites, Grandtacular and trainer-driver Russell MacDonald, to win the featured finale by a head in 1:59 flat. Cloudy Bay followed the winner's cover to a third-place finish two and a half lengths behind for Adam Merner. New Waterford trainer Andrew Campbell claimed the seven-year-old Western Terror mare two starts ago on Sept. 14 at Northside for $2,400 following back-to-back winning efforts. Saturday's victory was her fifth of the season in 21 starts and 17th lifetime. She paid $24 to win. Ryan and Andrew Campbell also teamed up to win an earlier race with four-year-old pacing mare R Es Sobrina in 2:00.1. First-time starter Majian Magic took the non-wagering $3,200 Nova Scotia Series Stakes for two-year-old trotters as her only rival in the race, the Danny Romo-trained and driven Dunmore Bravo, broke stride and finished a distant second. The time of the mile was 2:18.3 for the homebred Northern Bailey filly, who is owned, trained and driven by James Ripley of Amherst, N.S. To view Saturday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Saturday Results - Northside Downs. CHARLOTTETOWN DRIVING PARK Sent postward as the longest shot on the toteboard, Bunny Mach defied her odds with a four and a half length victory in the featured $2,200 Fillies & Mares Open Pace on Saturday at Charlottetown Driving Park. Gary Chappell worked out a second over trip aboard 14-1 longshot Bunny Mach and once her cover cleared she sprinted home in :28.3 for the 1:55.1 upset victory. Favourite Veronicavermillion and Brodie MacPhee finished second after advancing first over and pocket-sitter J K Special, with Walter Cheverie aboard, was third. Bunny Mach produced a win payout of $31.90. The victory was the 30th lifetime for the eight-year-old Mach Three mare, who is currently trained by Stephen Quinn for Vernon Bridge, P.E.I. owners Donald MacRae and Steven MacRae. To view Saturday's harness racing results, click on the following links: Saturday Results - Charlottetown Driving Park. (reprinted with permission from www.standardbredcanada.ca)
Trainer Lance Ward celebrated a pair of stake wins in the Horizon Pace with two-year-olds Comes Home First and Need You So Bad on Sunday afternoon at Alberta Downs while Tim Brown trainee Jet Tracker debuted impressively in 1:55.3 in the fastest and final division. Jim Marino drove both of Ward's winners, who are owned by the J J J Stables of Aldergrove, B.C. Comes Home First romped to a wide-open victory in the first of three $16,667 divisions. The early leaver retook the lead after the :28-second opening panel and fronted the field through fractions of :58.4 and 1:27.4 before drawing away by 10-3/4 lengths to win in 1:56.4. Longshot Shyloh Changerluck (James Jungquist) and Blue Eyed Cowboy (Bill Tainsh Jr.) came on from the backfield to round out the top three finishers. The Brandons Cowboy colt now has two wins in two pari-mutuel starts. Need You So Bad led at every pole to remain perfect in his young career.Also making his second pari-mutuel start, the American Ideal gelding carved out fractions of :28, :58.4 and 1:28.1 before battling back against an on-rushing Ghost Pine (Kelly Hoerdt) to prevail in 1:58. Ghost Pine finished two lengths behind in second while The Big Heist (Rene Goulet) closed from the back of the pack to show. Jet Tracker proved to be the best of the bunch with his 1:55.3 speedy score in the other division for owners Albert and Lois Branham of Sherwood Park, Alta. Driven by Brandon Campbell, the Jeremes Jet colt sat a two-hole trip through early fractions of :27.4 and :58.1 before blasting to command. He quickly opened up six and a half lengths on his rivals by the 1:25.3 third quarter station and more than doubled that margin to 14-1/4 in the final panel. Cowboy Mathis (Keith Clark) came from last to place while early breaker Pass The Port (Paul Davies) finished third. In regular racingaction, nine-year-old pacer Trust The Artist earned his second consecutive victory in the $8,500 Open for trainer/driver Kelly Hoerdt after turning back challenger Smooth Criminal (Bill Tainsh Jr.) around the final turn during a 1:53 mile. The 53-time career winner is owned by Hoerdt and partners Blair Corbeil and Mike McAllister, all of Beaumont, Alta. Mr Saratoga (Quentin Schneider) and No Fear (Brandon Campbell) came on for second and third-place honours. (reprinted with permission by Standardbred Canada)
Kelly Hoerdt had always considered a career in harness racing when he was at school but it wasn't until Sarepta Mile came along that he decided to drop all plans of becoming a hockey player in favour of working and driving standardbreds.
Mystic Maiden tasted defeated on Friday night for the first time in eight months. The talented B.C. import finished a surprising seventh in the $30,000 Western Filly Pace elimination heat on the opening night on the Northlands Park harness racing meet in Edmonton.
Driver-trainer Kelly Hoerdt is seeing his move to Indiana turn successful. In only his 10th start of the meet, he recorded his first win with Blue Star Majesty Tuesday, May 12 at Hoosier Park Racing and Casino.
Brandon Campbell pupils have been declared morning line favourites for divisions of the Premier's Filly Stakes Friday at Northlands Park. The lone colt split will be a non-betting event, with trainer Kelly Hoerdt having six entered to the nine-horse dash.