While his last win was 11 months ago and he had had 21 starts since then, former northerner Mach Cruiser looks another bargain buy for the Westview syndications after a convincing win in Sundays feature at Motukarara. Formerly trained by Doug Gale in the north, Westview principal Nigel Armstrong recieved an offer to buy the the Mach Three 8yr old by mate and North Canterbury horseman Gavin Smith about three months ago. The bonus was that the horse had been in full work for awhile and was at workouts and trials in early October. He showed with a couple of good trial runs that he could be the type of horse that would be easy to place in Country Cups races over the summer. Going into today's race, Mach Cruiser had had three starts for two 7ths and a 9th. On paper hardly a startling formline, however, for those that had watched the cup day run for 7th, today's $31 dividend looked a tasty prospect. In his cup day assignment he ran home to be beaten 12 lengths by an impressive Maverick, his own time in running 7th a once unheard of 3.10.8. After breaking early on in his Show Day race, Mach Cruiser lost all chance in what was his dropback race to C3. However, based on what he was showing at home, there was a quiet optimism from the stable about his chances today. After stepping brilliantly for driver Gavin Smith he enjoyed a nice trip in the one-one for the first half of the race. However, the three wide train came into play down the backstraight and coming to the turn his chances looked forlorn as he was third last and caught in traffic. It was well into the straight that Gavin finally managed to find some clear air and the horse let down in style wide out. He eventually managed to haul in Dana Duke in the shadows of the post, getting up for victory by a head in 3.41.3 for the 2810m. This was the 8th win from 62 starts for Mach Cruiser taking his stake-earnings to $44,098. More importantly though, this was the first win for his new owners, the Westview Racing No 14 syndicate. Talking to Nigel after the race he indicated that there were many first time owners in the syndicate, with 21 new to racing owners in the horse. It was fitting that the man doing the driving today was Gavin, the same man that initially suggested to Nigel that this would be a horse worth having a crack with. Well done to all concerned and I am sure that there will be more grass track assignments to have a crack at as the summer progresses. Mike Drury Robert Dunn Racing Stables - Check site here
TORONTO, November 21 – Ontario three-year-old harness racing colts and geldings kicked off their Autumn Series with four divisions Saturday night at Woodbine Racetrack. A total of 18 pacers and 20 trotters made up four $18,000 round one divisions. Mach On The Beach kicked off the night with a 1:52.2 victory in the first pacing division. Driven by Sylvain Filion, Mach On The Beach flashed early speed aiming for the front, while Twin B Sportsman was pacing hard early looking for the lead. Mach On The Beach got to the pylons first and Filion opted to stretch Twin B Sportsman out by the opening-quarter in :26.2. Filion eventually released the challenger at the top of the backstretch. After a half of :55.1, Mach On The Beach came to the outside and surged by Twin B Sportsman to take the field by the three-quarter pole in 1:24.1. In the stretch, Mach On The Beach left his rivals in his dust and paced away to an easy-looking four-length victory. The Rock finished up with a strong final-quarter to come from eighth to finish second. Sports Lightning finished third, while Windsong Lightning was fourth. A son of Mach Three, Mach On The Beach is trained by Richard Moreau for owner Ecurie Gaetan Bono Inc. The sophomore gelding now has seven wins from 24 starts in his first season of racing. Mach On The Beach pushed his earnings to over $60,000 with the victory Saturday, while also lowering his career-mark by more than two-seconds. The Moreau trainee paid $3.90 to win. Mach On The Beach In the second division, Cajon Lightning came first up to win in 1:52.4. Driven by Mike Saftic, Cajon Lightning got away fifth in the early stages, while Doctor Royal and Major Dan took turns on the lead through panels of :26.1 and :56.1. Saftic sent Cajon Lightning first up around the final turn and the even-money favourite was second and less than two-lengths from the front at the three-quarter pole. In the stretch, Cajon Lightning powered by Doctor Royal and paced home strong in :27.2 for a length and a half victory. Jack Reacher finished second, while Naturescape finished third just ahead of Doctor Royal. Another son of Mach Three, Cajon Lightning is trained by Scott Bell for owner John Taylor. Saturday’s victory was the third from 16 starts this season for the gelding. Cajon Lightning has now earned over $48,000 in his first season of racing. The clocking of 1:52.4 matched his career-mark taken October 12 at Woodbine. Cajon Lightning paid $4.10 to win. Cajon Lightning On the trotting side, Stormont Wizard took the first division in 1:56.1 at odds of 3/5. Driven by James MacDonald, Stormont Wizard trotted out strongly to grab command at the opening-quarter in :28. Down the backstretch, Win The Day came first up from fifth at the half to challenge the leader. MacDonald kept his trotter moving well and turned aside the first-over challenger to lead the field by the three-quarter pole in 1:26.1. In the stretch, Stormont Wizard sealed the deal with a :30 final-quarter to score a two and a quarter length victory. P L Icabod finished second, while Lmc Mass Oak was third. Win The Day rounded out the Superfecta in fourth. A son of Kadabra, Stormont Wizard is trained by Kevin Benn for Stormont Meadows. The sophomore gelding now has two wins in 12 starts this season. Last year, Stormont Wizard scored a single victory in seven starts, while hitting the board five-times. The Benn trainee has banked over $48,000 this season and $74,000 lifetime. Stormont Wizard paid $3.40 to win. Stormont Wizard Love Hunter turned a two-hole trip into a victory in the second trotting division. The Nick Gallucci trainee left quickly for driver Trevor Henry to challenge for the lead, however Gronk, the even-money favourite, pushed forward for the lead and forced Henry into the pocket. After setting fractions of :26.4, :57.3 and 1:27.1, Gronk carried the lead into the lane with Love Hunter on his back. In the stretch, Love Hunter came to the outside and waged war with Gronk, eventually edging by in deep stretch to win by half a length in 1:57. Freddie closed with good speed for third, while Thoughtful Leader was fourth. A son of Holiday Road, Love Hunter entered Saturday’s contest with one win in 10 starts this season. The Autumn Series division victory pushes the gelding’s earnings in 2015 to over $34,000. Love Hunter paid $12.20 to win. Love Hunter In order to be eligible to the Autumn Series, the Ontario sired three-year-olds had to be non-winners of $50,000 lifetime or $30,000 in 2015 as of September 30, 2015. The second round of the Autumn Series for the colts and geldings will take place next Saturday (November 28).
TORONTO, November 20 - Just one night after a pair of two-year-old series finals, the Autumn Series action continued with first leg divisions for the harness racing three-year-old fillies. A total of four $18,000 divisions were contested at Woodbine on Friday, as 19 sophomore pacing fillies and 13 sophomore trotting fillies competed in round one action. Aniston Seelster lived up to her 1/2 billing to win the first pacing division in 1:53.2. The Gregg McNair trainee was sent directly to the front by driver Doug McNair and posted an opening-quarter of :27.2. After a :30.2 second-quarter, Aniston Seelster cruised by the third-station in 1:25.4, before pacing home comfortably in :27.3 for a length and three-quarters victory. Amazing Control finished second, while Show Some Leg was third. A daughter of Mach Three, Aniston Seelster has now won six of 19 starts this season for earnings of over $83,000. She is owned by Lindsey and Connie Rankin. Aniston Seelster paid $3.10 to win. Aniston Seelster In the second division, Much Adoo scored a 1:54.4 victory in her debut for new trainer Issac Waxman. Several fillies flashed early speed looking for the front, but Mach Magic from the far outside was the quickest away and posted an opening-quarter of :26.4. St Lads Gidget was parked around the first turn, but cleared to the lead entering the backside. Mach Magic quickly circled back to the lead at the half in :55.4. Around the final turn, Much Adoo came out from fourth for driver McNair to challenge first up, while Dontbruisecarrie followed second-over and Pinky Tuscadero sat to their outside three-wide. Much Adoo overtook the lead turning for home and paced away in the lane. Pinky Tuscadero finished a length and a quarter back in second, while Windsong Lindsey was third. Mach Magic and several horses were interfered with at the top of the stretch and taken out of contention after Dontbruisecarrie made a break. A daughter of Classic Card Shark, Much Adoo was making her debut Friday for new owners Aaron Waxman and Alan Alber. She has now won four of 23 starts this season after making just two starts as a rookie. Much Adoo's earnings now exceed $50,000. She paid $5.50 to win. Much Adoo On the trotting side, The Murmuring Pan scored an easy 1:57.2 victory in the first division. Sent off at odds of 1/9, The Murmuring Pan got away third for driver Trevor Henry, while Stormont Contessa trotted out to the lead. After an opening-quarter of :29.4, Henry pulled on the right line and quickly moved to the front. The second-quarter move would seal the deal, as The Murmuring Pan posted panels of :59.4 and 1:28.4, before trotting home under a hand drive in :28.3 to win by 4½ lengths. Aspen California showed good closing speed to come from fifth to grab second, while Elegant Holiday finished third. A daughter of Kadabra, The Murmuring Pan is owned and trained by Paul Reid. The sophomore trotter now has victories in four of seven attempts this season and six of 13 career starts. Friday's victory pushed The Murmuring Pan's seasonal earnings to $43,500, while her career bankroll now sits at over $66,000. The Reid trainee paid $2.30 to win. The Murmuring Pan In the second split, Ill Stay Here scored a 1:57 victory at odds of 5/2. Driven by Randy Waples, Ill Stay Here grabbed an early spot in fourth, while Tymal Fireitup, the 4/5 favourite, trotted out to the lead. Brinkers Dream made a second-quarter move to the front from third and touched down on the lead at the half in :57.4. Ill Stay Here sat fourth along the rail around the final turn and was close to six-lengths off the lead turning for home, as Brinkers Dream reached the third-station in 1:26.4. In the stretch, Tymal Fireitup came out of the two-hole to retake the lead, but Waples was able to get Ill Stay Here off the rail to the far outside with clear racetrack. Tymal Fireitup tried to go all the way, but Ill Stay Here tracked her down and edged by late to win by a neck. Strikinglyimpressive finished third. A daughter of Pilgrims Taj, Ill Stay Here is trained by Colin Johnson for owners Thomas Kyron and Debbie Element. The sophomore trotting filly now has wins in seven of 20 starts in 2015. Ill Stay Here made three visits to the winner's circle as a rookie. The Johnson trainee now has career earnings of over $65,000 with $56,000 earned this season. The clocking of 1:57 established a new career mark for Ill Stay Here. She paid $7.80 to win. Ill Stay Here In order to be eligible to the Autumn Series, the Ontario sired three-year-olds had to be non-winners of $50,000 lifetime or $30,000 in 2015 as of September 30, 2015. The second leg for the fillies will take place next Friday (November 27), while Autumn Series action continues Saturday night with round one for the sophomore colts and geldings. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie
Batavia, NY---Wind gusts topping 50 mph could not dissuade the best effort of Mach This Way after she got aired-out for more than half a mile before winning the $10,000 Open mares pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Nov. 18). The race was basically the tale of two mares. Memumsnotnice (Drew Monti) who shot right to the front to cut the fractions as she normally does and Mach This Way (Ron Beback Jr.), who was taken back to sixth until past the quarter pole. Coming to the head of the stretch the first time, Beback pulled Mach This Way first-over and started a slow, methodical march towards the leader. By the time the field hit the three-quarter pole, Mach This Way was almost alongside Memumsnotnice and had no intention of stopping. The pair broke away from the pack, paced stride-for-stride around the far turn and matched steps all the way down the stretch until Mach This Way got a late advantage to win by a half-length in 1:56.4. It was the sixth win of the year for Mach This Way ($17.80) and pushed her earnings to $48,005 for owner William Emmons. James Clouser Jr. trains the Mach Three mare. Ron Beback Jr. had an outstanding night in the sulky, winning four races. He took pictures with Dirt Track Momma ($6.90), Mach This Way ($17.80), China Dream ($3.30) and Carman Coyote ($13.20). Drew Monti, Jack Flanigen and Ray Fisher Jr. all scored driving doubles. Trainers James Clouser Jr. and Maria Rice also sent two horses each to the winner's enclosure. Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Nov. 20) at 6:15 p.m. By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs
Pompano Beach, FL…November 17, 2015…S S G Stables’ Mach Me Not, handled by Wally Hennessey for trainer Jim Mc Donald, took top honors in Pompano Park’s feature for the mares on Tuesday night, stopping the timer in 1:52.1. This rugged nine year-old daughter of Mach Three won for the 37th time during her lengthy career now stretching 209 starts and sent her lifetime bounty over the $350,000 mark--$352,492 to be precise. The victory on this night—her 10th of the year in 30 starts—was especially impressive as she was on the outside for the first five-eighths of the mile grinding towards the top spot, finally reaching the lead with three-eighths remaining and never threatened thereafter. Her winning margin was a length over Skyway Dusty (Aaron Byron) who led through panels of :27.1 and :55.4 before being out-brushed on the backside by the winner, who got to the third station in 1:24.1. Im Gracies Wigwam (Ed Hensley) was third, 1 ½ lengths away, while All Charged Up and Fiesta Camcun were next in the field of 10. In a post-race interview, driver Hennessey remarked, “She’s a tough mare all right. She has a tendency to drift out in the lane but she just keeps digging in until she passes the wire. Jimmy (trainer Mc Donald) has her very sharp again and she handled the competition very well tonight with the class jump.” Mach Me Not was sent post-ward as the 7 to 5 favorite and was one of three favorites to hit the winner’s circle in the track’s 50 cent Pick-5 event which paid a handsome $3,888.80 to the eight winning ticket holders of the 9-5-5-6-5 combination. The featured conditioned trot went to Janet, a sophomore daughter of Deweycheatumnhowe, for Aaron Byron in a lifetime best 1:56 performance. Trained by owner Richie Silverman, Janet won for the second consecutive time in her class but returned a very generous $26.00 to her faithful after returning $9.60 last week in this very same class—the difference being post position eight this week as opposed to number four a week ago. Still, Janet was able to assume control three-eighths into the mile from Luck Is All I Need (Wally Hennessey) and lead the rest of the way. American Superman (Andy Santeramo) finished third while Zoraze was fourth with El Diablo Rojo picking up the nickel. Janet’s scorecard now reads 5-2-4 in 19 starts this semester, good for $21,516. Racing continues on Sunday at Pompano Park with post time set at 7:30 p.m. by John Berry for Pompano Park
YONKERS, NY, Saturday, November 14, 2015 -The Real One (Pat Lachance, $13) was up on the money Saturday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's $30,000 winners-over harness racing feature. Assigned post position No. 7, The Real One found a seat fourth as Lucan Hanover (Brian Sears) led through early intervals of :26.4 and :55.3. Down the backside, Pass Them By N (Jeff Gregory) moved from third, escorting The Real One closer. Lucan Hanover continued to lead in and out of a 1:23.2 three-quarters, taking a length-and-a-half lead into the lane. However, he was about to get leveled from both sides. Pocket-sitting Aslan (Eric Goodell) went inside, while both Pass Them By N and The Real One collared the leader outside. The Real One was able to get the nod over his tow, winning by a neck in 1:51.4. Aslan was third, with "Lucan" and Snap to It A (Jordan Stratton) rounding out the payees. Big N Bad (Eric Carlson), as the 2-1 favorite, was a non-factor sixth. For fourth choice The Real One, a 5-year-old Mach Three gelding trained by his driver for owner Helene Filion, it was his seventh win in 28 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $63.50, the triple returned $272 and the superfecta paid $1,309. Note that since no one took down Saturday's Pick 5, Sunday's matinee gimmick begins with a carryover of $3,593.49 (50-cent base wager, races 7 through 11). Frank Drucker
Pompano Beach, Florida...November 10, 2015...Drake, handled by veteran harness racing driver Bob Roberts, pulled off the major upset as Pompano Park hosted four lucrative F.S.B.O.A Stallion Stakes--three non-wagering events--on Tuesday night. Drake pinned the three length defeat on Owosso Flash (Mike Deters) with Caesar's Forum (Wally Hennessey) third. Stutz and Gold Star Roger completed that quintet. Prairie Sweetheart, Gleneagles and Gold Star Dynasty also annexed victories in their respective classes. Drake, a three year-old son of Six Of Diamonds, was seeking a maiden win after 19 career starts--13 of those this semester--and appeared in "over his head" in this $30,950 non-wagering event with both Owosso Flash and Caesar's Forum in the fray, the latter pair dominating this class for sophomore pacing colts and geldings thus far in the season. But a surprise was lurking in this event--a surprise timed in 1:54.1. Indeed, it was Caesar's Forum, with Wally Hennessey in the bike, using his inside post to perfection with Owosso Flash right behind through an opening quarter in a tepid :29.2. That's when the fireworks began in earnest with Owosso Flash leaving the cozy pocket to engage the leader in battle. A :26.2 second panel left this pair literally nostrils apart at the :55.4 half with Drake now a dozen lengths away followed by Stutz and Gold Star Roger. The feverish pace continued on the backside with the top pair battling tooth and nail through a :54.2 middle half, reaching the third station in 1:23.4. Literally 20 lengths out of it three-eighths out, Drake began to gnaw into the lead and, when the "plugs" came out around the final turn, Roberts literally spoke to his charge and he answered back with a devastating rally that left the field in his wake. After the event, driver Roberts related, "you know, last week I told Kim (trainer Sears) that Drake was really starting to find his stride and he might have been closer had it not been for some road trouble. "This time, I knew I was going to get away third and when they battled for so long, I thought I just might get to them this time. "I like to talk to my horses when I drive them and, when I popped the plugs, I said, 'ok, boy, time to show 'em what your made of!" Owned by Jay and Kim Sears, Drake more than doubled his lifetime earnings in his first 19 starts, now standing at $28,675. In the $29,950 Stallion Stake for the juvenile pacing fillies, Prairie Sweetheart, the splendid daughter of Royal Millennium owned by John Spindler, along with Laurie Poulin and trainer Mike Deters, kept her career unblemished--now five-for-five--with a lifetime best 1:54.2 performance with trainer Mike in the bike. Prairie Sweetheart sent her lifetime earnings to $27,764 after taking command from Caitlin's Romance at the :28.2 opener and then on to fractions of :57.3 and 1:25.4 before sprinting home in :28.3 to seal the deal. Caitlin's Romance, second to Prairie Sweetheart in the last trio of Sunshine State Stakes, was second again, this time for Rick Plano. Diamond Lily, handled by Mike Micallef, was third with Gold Star Mysti and Trottime Sparks also earning purse checks in the field of six. In the $29,250 Stallion Stake for two year-old pacing colts and geldings, Gleneagles, after a brief, early tussle with Conman's Dream, held on gamely with a :28 finale to score by a neck in 1:55.3 for Wally Hennessey over Conman's Dream and Jason Mac Dougall. R Chism finished third for Mike Micallef while ICU Diamond T finished fourth. Trottime Diamonds picked up the nickel in the sextet. Gleneagles, a son of Mysticism owned by the Pinhook Stable, earned his fourth straight win to send his juvenile earnings to $37,198. The $32,550 Stallion Stake for three year-old pacing fillies was held on the betting card and Gold Star Dynasty continued her dynasty over her class with a lifetime best performance 1:55 performance for driver Aaron Byron. Trained by Mike Deters for Oldford Farms, Jarold Hawks and Wrenn Racing, Gold Star Dynasty took command from Davita (Corey Braden) right at the opening marker in :28 and went on to post fractions of :57 and 1:26.1 before her :28.4 closer sealed the deal over Davita with Paxxie (Kevin Wallis) third. Gold Star Sonata finished fourth while stablemate Gold Star Charming finished fifth in the field of six. Gold Star Dynasty now has a 7-4-1-0 scorecard this year, good for $27,287. She's banked $70,324 lifetime in just 14 starts. She paid a 10% dividend ($2.20) to her multitude of backers. In the $10,000 Open Handicap for mares, Mach It A Par, deftly handled by owner Dan Clements, used a perfect garden journey to roll past the 2 to 5 favorite, Godiva Seelster (Wally Hennessey), a sixteenth out to win in 1:52.1, her margin 1 1/4 lengths at the wire. Classic Carpet (Kevin Wallis) finished third in her Pompano Park debut while Jets Are On and Winbak Heavenly picked up the final two awards in the field of seven. The winner, trained by Renaldo Morales III, was away alertly from her inside post as Winbak Heavenly and Godiva Seelster decided to play a bit of hard ball early with Godiva three wide for much of the opening panel (:27) before assuming control shortly thereafter. With a half in :55.4 and three-quarters in 1:24, Godiva cut the corner turning for home but simply couldn't fend off the pocket sitting Mach Me Not in deep stretch, although she did extend her streak of earning purse money to 71 starts encompassing her entire seasons as a three, four and, now, five year-old seasons. Mach It A Par, meanwhile, won for the 11th time this season, good for $75,847, by far her most successful season of campaigning. The five year-old daughter of Mach Three now has lifetime bounty of $112,749. As second choice in the betting, Mach It A Par paid $7.20 to win. Pompano Park now continues on a three night-a-week schedule (Sunday, Monday and Tuesday) with post time 7:30 p.m. by John Berry for Pompano Park
WASHINGTON, PA, Nov. 9, 2015 -- Macharoundtheclock zipped to the lead from post 4 and never faced a serious challenge as she captured Monday's $18,000 Filly & Mare Not Listed Preferred/Preferred Handicap Pace at The Meadows. Primarily a closer until this year, Macharoundtheclock has shown more versatility of late. That served her well Monday when she flashed early speed for Mike Wilder and still had plenty in the tank. Eiffel Tower shot the Lightning Lane for second, 2-1/4 lengths back, with the pocket-sitting Mamas Fallen Angel third. Tim Twaddle trains Macharoundtheclock, a 5-year-old homebred daughter of Mach Three-Summers Soul who now boasts $477,563 in career earnings, for Birnam Wood Farms. Jim Pantaleano collected three wins on the 15-race card. The Meadows Racetrack & Casino
The Kentuckiana lodge stable have not had a great run lately with their star pacer Christen Me under an illness cloud so the win today of Lightning Mach on Cup day was a well timed tonic for harness racing trainer Cran Dalgety and driver Dexter Dunn. Away well from barrier eight, Dexter went straight to the front and rated Lightening Mach to perfection, burning down the back straight in 27.3 before carrying on with a 28.2 final section to cruise home an easy winner. The four year old daughter of Mach Three has always shown plenty and todays win was her sixth from just 15 starts. Dexter was confident going into the race that Lightning Mach would be hard to beat. “ She needed her first up run and the stable was pretty confident she would be tough to roll. “ I knew when she got an easy middle section that they would have trouble beating her,” Dexter said. Lightning Mach is raced by longtime stable client Pat Kubala. “ Pat has come up from Gore for Cup Day to see her race so its good she got the job done.” “ Pat has a few in work at home so its nice to win a race on Cup Day for him,” Dexter said. Dexter Dunn has rewritten the record books in the last few years and todays front running drive was a perfect example of why he has been so successful. Harnesslink Media
It is not often that Pukekohe harness racing trainer Brent Mangos doesn't have a smart youngster in his stable and his latest trainee Touch Of Success is no exception. The three year old son of Mach Three was brought by Brent from the 2014 New Zealand Premier sale at Christchurch for $40,000. As you would expect for a colt costing that much, Touch Of Success has a very strong maternal family. He is a son of the smart racemare Millwood Touche 1:56 ($81,879) who has already produced the talented Ohoka Texas 1:50.2 ($301,234) while his grand dam is the former high class racemare Quiet Touch 1:57.7 ($119,400). Not really a natural two year old, Touch Of Success won at Manawatu before taking on the All Stars barn in the Sales race at Addington Raceway. "I thought he went really good for such an inexperienced horse." " He drew the outside of the second line and still beat half of them home," Brent said. After a couple of trials at three, he lined up at Alexandra Park a fortnight ago and after sitting parked for the last lap, he was beaten half a neck. Brent is very happy with him heading into tonights race at Alexandra Park. " That first race has tightened him up good." " He is still very green and I think he will just continue to improve with racing but he should be very hard to beat tonight even though it is a strong maiden field he is in," Brent said. Brent has an immediate program worked out for Touch Of Success if he continues to improve as he thinks he will. " The immediate aim is the sales race just before New Year at Alexandra Park." " He still needs to improve but I think he will," Brent said. However Brent is looking long term with Touch Of Success. "He is a big horse for a Mach Three and I really think he is still six months away from being the finished product." " The whole family gets better with age and I think he will be like the rest of them," Brent said. In the meantime Touch Of Success is more than capable of winning a race or three and punters would be wise to keep a wary eye on his progress. Harnesslink Media
Templeton harness racing trainer Jim Curtin was very confident going into the C1 pace at Rangiora yesterday that his smart three year old Hickstead would be hard to beat. And so it proved with Hickstead going away well from the stand and working to the front after 200 metres. From there Jim controlled the tempo and when he asked the son of Mach Three to go as they turned for home, he quickly put daylight between him and the competition and cruised down to the line for an effortless victory. Jim has always had an opinion of Hickstead and with every subsequent run, Hickstead is showing why. " He is just getting better with each run." " His manners are super which is always a big plus and as he learns the racing game he just keeps improving," Jim said. Bought for $26,000 at the 2014 yearling sales, Hickstead impressed in a handful of starts at two and has stepped up again at three. " He is a bit unusual for a Mach Three in that he is very laid back." " Most of the Mach Three's can get a bit hot but he is the exact opposite. " Nothing gets him too excited, he is so laid back" " I would rather have a horse that way than one who gets all stirred up," Jim said. Immediate plans for the horse have yet to be settled but he won't be joining the Curtin team on their annual pilgrimage to the West Coast at Christmas. " He would handle the grass as good as gold but he is a bit too smart to be taking to the Coast." " We will just look around for races closer to home for him," Jim said. With his great standing start manners and his continual improvement there are plenty of opportunities around Canterbury for Hickstead to build on his impressive record. Harnesslink Media
Harrisburg, PA --- Senena Esty is proud of her boy, but it is hard to say goodbye. Esty's Spring Haven Farm consigned colt trotter Kadillac, who was Tuesday's sale-topper at the Standardbred Horse Sale. The Ontario-eligible yearling, a son of stallion Kadabra out of the mare Proactive Gal, was purchased for $260,000 by Clark Beelby. Kadillac's family includes stakes-winner Bramasole, who also is the dam of this year's Peaceful Way winner Caprice Hill. "It's hard to see him go because I've spent every day with him," Esty said. "I try to be professional, but I've shed a few tears. I'm very proud of him. He just grew to be an outstanding individual. He's the nicest trotter I've ever sold." Kadillac was joined at the top of Tuesday's sale prices by colt pacer Sovereign Deo, who sold for $190,000 to Tom Hill. Sovereign Deo is a son of Mach Three out of World Of Her Own. His second dam is Dan Patch Award-winner Worldly Beauty and his family includes stakes-winners World Of Rocknroll and Rock N' Roll World, plus Worldly Treasure, who is the dam of Dan Patch Award-winner Captaintreacherous. Tony Alagna, who trained Captaintreacherous, will train Sovereign Deo. "Basically, it's the same family as Captaintreacherous," Tom Hill Jr. said. "Tony liked the horse. I spoke to Tony several weeks to go, he phoned me up, and his exact words were 'Wow, what a jaw-dropper he is.' He has a great conformation and the pedigree is second to none. "In my opinion, he was the best pacing colt in the sale. I think the price proved that. I'm very happy with the purchase. My dad wanted him and he step up. Fortunately, we got him. We'll just hope for a little bit of luck and take it from there." Through two days at the Standardbred Horse Sale, a total of 650 horses were sold for an average of $39,396. The average is a drop of 15.7 percent compared to the average of $46,748 for 535 horses last year. Standardbred Horse Sales Company President Pete Spears said some of the drop was the result of the Pennsylvania's budget impasse that led Gov. Tom Wolf to threaten to halt horse racing in the state. Negotiations are continuing to resolve the issue. A total of 398 Pennsylvania-eligible horses have sold for an average of $38,573. "After two days it's clear that the recent problems in Pennsylvania have had an adverse effect on the sale's results," Spears said. The price for Kadillac topped last year's Tuesday sale-topper, which was $225,000 for colt trotter Gotalottacredit. "I never try to have expectations because you don't want to set yourself up for disappointment," Esty said about Kadillac's price. "We're just a farm family and we just try to make a living doing what we love. But as the sale got closer and he looked the part, I thought hopefully he would bring $100,000." Esty bought Kadillac, who was bred by Dunroven Stud, as a weanling in November 2014. "He had a very good family and the conformation to go with it," Esty said. "It just looked like he had the potential to grow into a very nice colt." After watching Kadillac bolt through an open gate, Esty thought he had true potential. "He was in a group of 10 other colts and got past the gate," Esty said. "He got past me pretty quick. But, boy, you should have seen him trot. That was the day I knew I had something there. "He was quite the special colt so I had to pick out the perfect name for him." David Meirs III understands how Esty feels. Meirs' Concord Stud Farm raised and consigned Monday's sale-topper filly trotter Future Secured, for $500,000. The price equaled the auction-sales record for a yearling filly trotter, which was set by Courtney Hall in 2003. It tied for the fourth-highest auction price for any yearling and was the highest price for a yearling at auction since Detour Hanover sold for a record $825,000 in 2011. "It's not fully sunken in," Meirs said. "It's something I'm going to cherish. I sensed by whom was looking at the filly there was a chance (for a high price), but I've been there. I've done this now for more than 40 years. There are so many times you sit there and think you've got that one. "But when she hit $400,000 it was like being in a race. I saw multiple hands going up in the air and I almost had to catch myself; I was turning white. I starting thinking 'Where are we going here?' It was that thrill, but that's only part of it. Now I want her to do well. Nothing is going to make me happier than seeing this horse go forward and do well for the owners, and I can be a part of that." Meirs began to think Future Secured could be special when he watched her trot alongside her dam, 2010 Merrie Annabelle winner Thatsnotmyname, in the field. "I did not start to truly appreciate the filly until I watched her mom going through the field with her," Meirs said. "She would go stride for stride, exact same motion in the front. Her mother is a kind filly, but a little tough. But I think you need a little bit of that toughness to be a good racehorse. But what I enjoyed about this filly is that she's gaited exactly like mom." Meirs is no stranger to success --- Concord Stud Farm also consigned, as agent, last year's sale-topper Brooklyn Hill for $390,000, for example --- but he takes nothing for granted. "It's like the racing game," Meirs said. "You have your highs and you have the lows. When you have the high, cherish it. "There are a lot of keys to success, but it's not just one person. It's family; my family is involved very closely in the business. I've got a very good staff of people. We work seven days a week and we take a huge amount of pride in the product we come out with. We put a lot of time and effort into these youngsters to get them here to this point. It gives us a lot of self-satisfaction." Day Two Top 10 Hip-Sex-Gait-Name-Sire-Dam-Buyer-Consignor-Price 385-C-T-Kadillac-Kadabra-Proactive Gal-Clark Beelby-Spring Haven Farm-$260,000 499-C-P-Sovereign Deo-Mach Three-World Of Her Own-Tom Hill-Northwood Bloodstock Agency-$190,000 2022-C-T-Wild Whiskey-Cantab Hall-Bourbon Belle-Joe Holloway-Northwood Bloodstock Agency-$130,000 557-F-T-By A Neck Hanover-Chapter Seven-By A Nose Hanover-Andy Miller Stable, agent-Hanover Shoe Farms-$105,000 316-C-P-Must Be Luck-Camluck-Fashion Sureal-Dave Menary-All American Harnessbreds-$100,000 367-C-T-Change Page-Chapter Seven-Order By Credit-Michael Pozefsky-Concord Stud Farm, agent-$100,000 402-F-T-Royal Witch-Kadabra-Royal Tennis-Benoit Baillargeon, agent-Preferred Equine Mkt. Inc., agent-$100,000 442-C-P-Twin B Rockstar-Rocknroll Hanover-Sugar Sugar-Brian Brown-Twinbrook Farms-$100,000 390-F-P-Crooked Halo-Big Bad John-Real Lady Katie-Jeff Webster-Northwood Bloodstock Agency-$95,000 410-C-P-Beach House-Somebeachsomewhere-Sara Sue-Harry Locke-All American Harnessbreds-$92,000 Ken Weingartner
As any harness racing trainer will tell you, manners are a big plus when it comes to raceday. The ability to do things right gives a horse so many more options and generally these days if you haven't got good manners, you will struggle Jim Curtin's smart little three year old Hickstead is a prime example of a young horse who seems to have all the ringcraft necessary to fully utilise his talent. At Friday night at Addington Raceway, Hickstead stepped straight to the front and ran them along early, eased in the middle stages and then brushed home in 56.7 and 27.9 for a comfortable win. The son of Mach Three from the former smart racemare Il Informed 1:58.3 ($80,423) was purchased out of the 2014 New Zealand Premier Sale at Christchurch for $26,000 and has always shown above average ability at trials and workouts. A winner at two,Highstead started this season with a close second at Addington but had mixed luck at his next two before Friday night's win. " He went really good first up for the season and then I took him to the Sires Stakes heat at Forbury Park but he went very average and was disappointing." " I think I may have backed him up too soon as he is way better than that," Jim told Harnesslink recently. From there Jim lined him up at Methven where he finished fourth and Jim blames himself for not finishing closer. " I should have gone before Mark's (Purdon) horse came around so he did well to finish as close as he did." " Even at Addington on Friday night he was having a look at everything and gawking about." " I think he is better in behind than in front at the moment," Jim said. Jim has no immediate plans for Hickstead though he is being aimed at the Sires Stakes consolation in late November. " He is such a busy horse at home, always on the go." " With his manners and ability I think we are going to have some real fun with this one," Jim said. Harnesslink Media
TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec - Pop Goes Theweasel popped for another big harness racing score Sunday at the Hippodrome 3R as the three-year-old filly romped to her third straight victory. Driver Mario Charron was on fire Sunday as he scored five victories on the day and is now four wins away from catching Denis St Pierre (48 wins) for the 2015 driving title at 3R. Currently for the training title Maxime Velaye holds a slim one win lead (19) over Jean Tourigny at 18 wins going into the final day next Sunday. Driven confidently by regular reinsman, Louis-Phillipe Roy, Pop Goes Theweasel started from the rail in the third race feature pace and got away in second place as Classic Breeze (Pascal Berube) shot to the early lead from post six. But by the opening quarter mile in :29.4 on a rain-soaked track with a two second variance, Roy was on the move with Pop Goes Theweasel and the daughter of Mach Three was in command for the rest of the one mile race. Roy was able to slow down the pace with Pop Goes Theweasel to the half mile in 1:01.4 as Monster Magic (Steeven Genois) came first-over with Bemmol Kalie (Gaetan Lamy) following the outside cover. Down the backstretch Monster Magic began to fade and Gamy moved three-wide with Bemmol Kalie and cleared by the three-quarters in 1:32.2. But it was too little too late as Roy merely just raised the lines on Pop Goes Theweasel and the filly pulled away from the field in the stretch to win by seven and one-quarter lengths in 2:01.1. The pocket-sitting Classic Breeze was able to come on for second place with Bemmol Kalie third. It was the seventh win this year for Pop Goes Theweasel. She is owned by Roland Trudel of Becancour, QC and paid $4.20 to win. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. By Steve Wolf, for the Quebec Jockey Club
TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, October 24, 2015 - It is rare that a horse does not have a good story, usually unknown to the masses. This is the case of the three-year-old pacing filly, Pop Goes Theweasel, who goes for her third straight win at the Hippodrome 3R on Sunday. The daughter of Mach Three, who has finished first or second in her last four races, starts from the rail in the third race co-feature for trainer Jean Tourigny and will be driven by Louis-Phillipe Roy. Pop Goes theweasel is owned by Roland Trudel of Becancour, QC and that is where the story begins. In 2012, Trudel went to the Forest City Standardbred Sale looking for bargains as he admits he loves to do. He had already purchased a Kadabra filly that he had a crush on, Sarakadabra. When the bidding was done he had his filly for $10,000, a bit more than he would have liked to have paid, but nonetheless he wanted the filly. It was Claude Beausoleil who was to bring the filly home and Roland was to pick her up the following morning. "I brought my check book," Trudel explained, "Because Claude had bought that Sunday a filly by Mach Three that he had paid $2,500 for. I had the opportunity to see her video and I liked her' swing ' in the paddock. "Once there, I told Claude that I wanted to see her again and what I saw I liked. Give me $500 more and she is yours Claude said. So sooner said than done, I came back with two fillies instead of one. "This year," Claude said, "it's true that sometimes bargains come good. After all, when considering the pedigree of the filly, one is impressed and pleased that her mother had been prolific. My Bell Ami, a Artsplace filly, was sold for $55,000 as a yearling, and has already to her credit three foals, all fillies, with average earnings of over $100,000. "Three out of five in that time," Trudel added. "So this is an excellent family and Mach Three is probably the highest rated stallion in Ontario. So yes, we can speak of a bargain for Claude and me then." The genealogy enthusiasts will also noticed that the brother of Pop Goes Theweasel sold for $26,000 last week in Lexington. Of course, the filly is named after the popular children's nursery rhyme. Unraced at age two, Pop Goes Theweasel has been making up for lost time and last week she blossomed big time. Starting from the rail for Roy, she was given great cover and then came out in the stretch and blew by the field to win going away by two and one-quarter lengths in 1 :57.4. It was her sixth win of the season and a lifetime mark. Pop Goes Theweasel is the 5/2 morning line favorite on Sunday. She will have her work cut out as she faces a steller field that includes recent 3R winners Pro Play (post 2), Classic Mondiale (post five) and Classic Breeze (post six). With just two race days left to the meet at 3R, Denis St Pierre still leads the drivers with 48 wins, which would be tough for either Mario Charron (39) and Stephane Brosseau (37) to catch up to him for the driving title. There is a five-way battle for the trainer title. Maxime Velaye has a slight lead with 18 wins, but Jean Tourigny (17), Dany Fontaine (15), Yves Tessier (15) and Andre Champagne (11), all have a shot at winning the title. This Sunday is the second to last day of live harness racing action at the Hippodrome 3R. The final card of the meet will be Sunday, November 1. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. By Daniel Delisle and Steven Wolf for the Quebec Jockey Club
Pompano Beach, FL…October 24, 2015…Lyons Johnny, the rugged seven year old owned by the Baron Racing Stable, goes for a harness racing three-peat at Pompano Park on Sunday night, tackling a million dollar field, more than half of which own sub-1:50 marks. The seven year-old son of Mach Three, trained and driven by Mike Micallef, has shown tremendous courage in his two winning efforts in the top class since the meet opened. Two starts back, Lyons Johnny went first up on Pompano’s backside and wore down a game Audrey’s Dream, with Ed Hensley in the bike, in the final stride to score in 1:51. Last week, he was up to the task, as well, conquering his foes and a driving rain to, again, pin defeat on Audrey’s Dream and six others in 1:52.2. This week, Lyons Johnny has to be up to an even tougher assignment as he has been assigned the outside eight post in the field with two new “paces in the crowd”—Alexa’s Jackpot and Panocchio. Alexa’s Jackpot, from the Marty Fine Stable, is enjoying his finest campaign-- $118,849 to date—and sports a mark of 1:49.3 up north in Philadelphia. Joe Pavia, Jr. is listed to drive Alexa’s Jackpot. Panocchio is no stranger to Pompano Park as this five year-old son of No Pan Intended has stacked up 24 wins over the past two seasons to go along with a mark of 1:49.3 here at Pompano Park. Owned by Emile Johnson, Jr. along with trainer Jim Mattison, Dan Clements is expected to be in the sulky on Sunday night. The explosive late charging Northern Companion, Whogoesfirst, Raji’s Blue Line and Sir Jake’s Z Tam complete the talented field. Also, four finals of the F.S.B.O.A. sponsored Sunshine State Stakes will be contested with the headliner being the three year-old colt/gelding trot featuring the talented Prairie Fortune. This sophomore son of Arapa Victory goes for the sweep, as he has captured the first three legs of the Stake—very handily—for trainer-driver Mike Deters, who also co-owns with Laurie Poulin. Post time for the pari-mutuel card is 7:30 p.m. with three non-wagering Sunshine State Stakes Finals slated for a 6:00 post time. The Sunday card also features a growing carryover in the Super Hi-5--$3,497— which is contested on the 12th race finale. by John Berry for Pompano Park.