Day At The Track
Search Results
49 to 64 of 2665

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 31 - The Rick Zeron stable stepped into the harness racing spotlight by sweeping Thursday evening's Champlain Stakes at Mohawk Racetrack. A group of 17 rookie trotting fillies competed over the course of two $86,940 Champlain divisions to start Grand Circuit week. Rick Zeron sent out three starters in Thursday's stakes and came away with victories in both events. Cantab Hall filly Courtney Hanover extended her current win streak to three with a 1:56.4 score in the first division for trainer/driver Zeron. Sent off as the 3/2 favourite, Courtney Hanover got away third heading into the first turn, but quickly inherited second due to a break and was moved to the lead at three-eighths. After taking over the lead from Miss Mimi, the Zeron trained filly led through middle-half panels of :58 and 1:28.1. Poised to seal the deal in the lane, Courtney Hanover opened up a lead of at least three lengths with an eighth of a mile to go. Blonde Magic, who was 28-1, made things interesting by uncorking a strong stretch rally, but came up a head short at the line. Bella Glos finished third, while Miss Mimi was fourth. A $47,000 purchase at last November's Harrisburg Yearling Sale, Courtney Hanover is now three for six with $71,570 earned for owners Rick Zeron Stables, Paul Marion, Bruno Dipoce and Howard Taylor. "This was the first time I moved her and raced her on the front," said Zeron. "She loves chasing horses...she's more of a fighter than a leader, so I was very happy that she trotted right home for me tonight." A $2 win ticket on Courtney Hanover returned $4.90. Courtney Hanover The Zeron barn went right back to the winner's circle in the second split, as Atlanta pulled off a 9-1 upset in 1:56.1 A Chapter Seven filly, Atlanta turned in a big final-quarter to nail race-favourite Jordan Blue Chip at the line for a career-best victory. The Zeron trained filly was trotting along fifth at the half, while Jordan Blue Chip had just secured the lead and proceeded to post fractions of :57.4 and 1:27.2. In the stretch, Jordan Blue Chip turned aside challenger Apprentice M and looked to have victory in her sights, but Zeron tipped Atlanta off cover from third-over and the filly took off. Atlanta got up to win by a nose with a :27.4 final-quarter. "When I moved her coming down the lane, I knew I needed a lot to come and catch Paul (MacDonell - Jordan Blue Chip)," said Zeron. "Paul heard me coming and I was barking at my filly pretty good and we went across the wire and Paul said 'You didn't beat me again' and I said 'I don't know if I did or not, but I'm pretty happy'. "She raced really good. She dug right in where she had to and got the job done." Atlanta was one for four coming into Thursday's contest. Zeron had initially tried the Chapter Seven filly in the New York Sires Stakes, but the small tracks weren't to her liking. "She would get to the first turn and look at it and say 'I'm not going to do this', so she let me know 'I want to be on a big track', so here we are and she's doing her own thing." A $60,000 purchase at last November's Harrisburg Yearling Sale, Atlanta is owned by Rick Zeron Stables, Holland Racing Stable, Howard Taylor and Brad Grant. The rookie trotting filly now has $55,025 earned in five starts. Atlanta The top four-finishers in the second Champlain division were rounded out by Swing It Cathy in third and Ciao Dolce in fourth. A $2 win ticket on Atlanta returned $20.90. Courtney Hanover and Atlanta are both eligible to the upcoming Peaceful Way Stakes eliminations on Monday, September 11. Grand Circuit action continues Friday night at Mohawk Racetrack with the $187,760 Champlain for two-year-old trotters (two divisions) and the $166,872 Simcoe Stakes for three-year-old trotting fillies. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 31 - Harness racing fans coming out to Mohawk Racetrack this Saturday will have an opportunity to meet and congratulate James MacDonald, the 2017 World Driving Champion, ahead of the Canadian Pacing Derby card. MacDonald, 31, recently captured the 2017 World Driving Championship by besting 10 other drives from around the world to take the top prize on home soil. One of the leading drivers at Mohawk Racetrack, MacDonald became the fourth Canadian driver to capture the World Driving Championship. The special autograph session with MacDonald will get underway at 6:15 p.m. on Saturday and will take place on the main level of the Grandstand. Mohawk has put together a special photo for fans to receive and have autographed by MacDonald. Only a limited number of photos are available, so fans are encouraged to arrive early to get this special collector's item. Draw ballots will also be available at the autograph session for fans to win a special poster signed by all of the World Driving Championship participants. Mohawk will be giving away three of the signed posters with the draw taking place later in the evening. The first 300 fans to Mohawk on Saturday will also receive a free program. Post time for Saturday's Canadian Pacing Derby card is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 31 - Back in the care of harness racing trainer Casie Coleman, six-year-old McWicked could surpass $2 million in career earnings with a strong performance in Saturday's $615,000 Canadian Pacing Derby at Mohawk Racetrack. Following his four-year-old campaign, Mcwicked departed from Coleman's barn and was moved to trainer Steve Elliott, who conditioned the son of Mcardle for his five-year-old season and the first part of his current six-year-old season. "He didn't win a race at four with me and the owners just decided to try him with somebody else," Coleman said. "He went away for a little while, but then they asked me to take him back and I did." Mcwicked's five-year-old season was cut short after sustaining an injury in the June 2016 Roll With Joe Pace, where he flipped his palate and underwent corrective surgery. "I thought he could go with [Always B] Miki and [Wiggle It Jiggleit], I really did," Mcwicked's former trainer Steve Elliot said in an interview last year. "He's a fast, fast horse and he's handy. He doesn't ever grab a line. Sitting in the two-hole, drivers want to get him off the fence. Pull the right line and he takes off. You don't know how much horse you've got until you pull and then you have to watch you don't catch a wheel. He's just that kind of horse. He's a very good horse and circumstances didn't dictate that." Mcwicked, a 21-time winner with $1,992,206 earned for owner S S G Stables, made his 2017 seasonal debut on February 12 at Pompano Park, where he won the $12,500 Open Handicap in 1:50.4 devoid of breathing issues from which he had suffered in the past. "I didn't have any issues with him as a three-year-old with his breathing, but as a four-year-old we started having some issues with that," Coleman said. "Like I'll use the laser machine and laser his palette and take the tongue tie out and stuff along those lines. It's a constant thing you've got to work on because once they have a breathing issue you never know when it's going to come up." After racing ten times this season for Elliott, Mcwicked returned to Coleman's barn and proceeded to win the Preferred at Mohawk on June 3, followed by the $100,000 Mohawk Gold Cup in 1:48.2 on June 17. "I just put him back to the way I had [trained] him," Coleman said. "I don't really know what they were doing with him--I wasn't really concerned with how they rigged him up and trained him because I knew my way worked with him as a three-year-old and he's been seeming to respond." Prior to last Saturday's Canadian Pacing Derby eliminations, Mcwicked had finished fourth in three consecutive starts, including in the $325,000 Dan Patch Invitational at Hoosier Park as the 2-1 favourite. "He didn't race badly at Hoosier, but I was expecting more out of him," Coleman said. "He came up with an abscess in his foot, which we've actually been working on for a little while. He's actually been racing in an A-bar shoe right now just because he has some problems with his foot." Finishing third in his 'Pacing Derby' elimination, Mcwicked paced a 1:48.3 mile with a :25.4 final quarter, coming in six-lengths off of elimination winner Rockin Ron. "Everything seems great [heading into the Pacing Derby]," Coleman said. "I wish he was a little bit better on that foot--he trained yesterday (Tuesday); he trained really good. He's sharp and feeling good, but we still have a little bit of an issue with his foot but I think that will be fine by the time we get to Saturday." McWicked will start from the rail in Saturday's big race and will have the driving services of David Miller. "The rail isn't necessarily the best place to be--I mean, I'll take it over the nine or ten any day. Like it's hard for a horse to race on the front-end and get off the rail, so I'm hoping he gets away mid pack, follows some cover and hopefully works out from that spot." Update on Summer Travel After winning the Dream Maker Final in a stakes-record 1:50.3 on August 7, Coleman trained two-year-old Summer Travel was scheduled to race in last Saturday's Nassagaweya Stakes, but was scratched due to sickness. The Western Ideal colt was not the only Coleman rookie to be scratched, as filly Play The Bell, the winner of this year's Battle of The Belles, was also pulled from the Eternal Camnation. "They trained early (last) week and they were awesome--couldn't have been better," Coleman said. "But then on Thursday, the both of them started to snot but were eating good and feeling good. On Friday they were a lot more snotty and started to cough, still seeming to feel fine until Saturday morning we came in and saw Summer Travel had a temperature of 104 [Fahrenheit] and Play The Bell had a temperature of 102, so obviously we had to scratch them." "We've been treating them; they're on antibiotics. They seem to both be responding quite well--their snot pretty much cleared up and their temperatures are fine. Still, they both do have a little bit of a cough, but it is much, much better." The signs of improvement gave Coleman enough confidence to enter both rookies in this Saturday's Grand Circuit events at Mohawk. Summer Travel will compete in a $96,880 Champlain division, while Play The Bell will start in the $169,381 Champlain Filly Stakes. "They're both going to be a touch-bit short because I can't train them as much as I'd like to," Coleman said. "We've got to let them get over the sickness. Obviously, if at all they are not ready by Saturday, we're not going to take a chance and race them, but I think we'll be okay." Saturday's Canadian Pacing Derby card at Mohawk features 12-races and over $1.4 million in purses. Post time is 7:30 p.m. by Ray Cotolo

AUGUST 29, 2017 - Harness racing fillies trained by Gregg McNair now sit first and second in the three-year-old pacing filly point standings as Action Majesty and The Joy Luck Club triumphed in their respective Ontario Sire Stakes Gold Series divisions at Mohawk Racetrack on Tuesday evening. First out of the paddock for the McNair Stable was Action Majesty, who was sent off as the Race 3 favourite after winning her last two Gold Series starts in effortless fashion. Starting from Post 3 with Doug McNair in the race bike, Action Majesty took quick command of the race and loafed through fractions of :27, :56.3 and 1:25.1 before rocketing home to a two-length victory in 1:51.3. Aint Three Ok was second and top Grassroots filly Manhattan Play was third in her sophomore Gold Series debut. "She's been good, that was a good bunch of older mares she beat last week (Aug. 18). She got a little respect tonight," noted trainer Gregg McNair. "She looked like she was definitely the filly to beat in there, and once she made the lead she got things her own way. And she sprinted home, obviously :26.2, they weren't going to make up much ground," added driver Doug McNair. "It would have been tough for somebody to pressure her without costing themselves money, you know." The McNairs, based in Guelph-Eramosa Township, ON, train and drive Action Majesty for owner-breeder Kenneth Sommer of Sheffield, OH. In four Gold Series starts the daughter of Royal Mattjesty and Action Grin has posted three wins and one third for a total of 165 points and top spot in the division standings. In 11 sophomore starts she boasts a record of four wins, two seconds and one third for earnings of $195,092. Action Majesty has not finished worse than second since a seventh-place result in the June 17 Fan Hanover Final. Action Majesty In the second $95,600 Gold division The Joy Luck Club also went off as the fans' top choice, coming into the race on a three-race win streak. Lining up behind Post 6, Doug McNair eased the filly away from the starting gate and the pair was sitting fourth when Fade reached the opening quarter in :26. Feeling Blameitonthenight coming up on his flank, McNair opted to send The Joy Luck Club up the outer lane and the favourite was looking Fade in the eye by the :54.1 half. On top by two lengths at the 1:21.3 three-quarters, The Joy Luck Club held on for a one length victory in a personal best 1:50.3. Fade was second and Grassroots regular P L Kahluaa was a hard-closing third. "She was real game," said Doug McNair. "She's got a big engine, the only thing is you've got to try to use it at the right time with her because she can get, sometimes she can get a little bit hot, but she's been a lot better the last few starts." "She really zinged that third-quarter. She's a pretty nice mare to have something left after that," said Gregg McNair. "They're a nice pair of mares, it's nice to have to have them." Gregg McNair shares ownership of The Joy Luck Club with R A W Equine Inc. of Burlington and breeder Mark Horner of St. Marys, ON. In 20 starts this season the daughter of Camluck and Oh The Joy has netted 13 wins and three seconds for earnings of $189,657. In four Gold Series starts she now has two wins, one sixth and one seventh for a point tally of 105 and second spot in the division standings. The top 10 point earners will compete in the $225,000 Super Final at Mohawk on Oct. 14. The Joy Luck Club The three-year-old pacing fillies will wrap up their regular season at Mohawk Racetrack on Oct. 2. In addition to their Gold Series victories, the McNairs also picked up two other wins with three-year-old pacing gelding All It Takes, a Grassroots regular, and three-year-old pacing filly Shewearsthepants, who sits atop the Grassroots point standings, and two seconds with four-year-old trotters Muscles For Life and Hill Of A Colt. All It Takes Shewearsthepants "It was a good night for Dad, I don't know if he's ever won four in one night at Mohawk," said the younger McNair. "I don't know. I kind of think we might have at one time," his father added. "But I don't think we've had a night like that though, a couple seconds to boot, it was a good night." This weekend Ontario Sires Stakes action will be featured on Mohawk Racetrack's stakes laden Friday and Saturday night cards. Three Grassroots divisions of two-year-old pacing fillies will highlight the Friday evening program, which also features the Champlain Stakes for two-year-old trotting colts and geldings and the Simcoe Stakes for three-year-old trotting fillies. On Saturday the three-year-old pacing colts will battle in a pair of Gold Series divisions on a card that also features the Champlain Stakes for both two-year-old pacing fillies and pacing colts, the Simcoe Stakes for three-year-old trotting colts and the $615,000 Canadian Pacing Derby for aged pacers. Post time for both programs is 7:30 pm. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: www.ontariosiresstakes.com Ontario Racing

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 28 - Rookie trotting fillies will be in the harness racing spotlight Thursday evening (August 31) to kick off Grand Circuit week at Mohawk Racetrack. The $173,880 Champlain Stakes for two-year-old trotting fillies has attracted 18 entrants, who have been split into two nine-horse divisions. Thursday's Grand Circuit event begins a stretch of cards featuring the Champlain and Simcoe Stakes. Both events date back to the early 1960's and have long attracted the finest horses, trainers and drivers to the Woodbine Entertainment circuit. Fresh off an exciting victory in the Pure Ivory Series on August 21, Courtney Hanover (PP3) will look to carry that momentum over to Thursday's first Champlain Stakes division for trainer/driver Rick Zeron. The daughter of Cantab Hall has taken a liking to her home-track with back to back victories at Mohawk after a pair of hiccups in Pennsylvania Sires Stakes action back in July. Courtney Hanover, who was a $47,000 yearling buy at Harrisburg, is two for five with $28,100 earned for owners Rick Zeron Stables, Paul Marion, Bruno Dipoce and Howard Taylor. She established her current mark of 1:56.2 in winning the Pure Ivory by a nose. The opening division also features Ontario Sires Stakes Gold winner Smoke And Mirrors (PP6, Trevor Henry). The Richard 'Nifty' Norman trained filly is two for four with $74,752 earned coming into the Champlain. An $85,000 yearling purchase at Harrisburg, Smoke And Mirrors is owned by Mel Hartman, David McDuffee and Little E LLC. Another OSS standout leads the way in the second division, as Jonas Czernyson trainee Apprentice M (PP2, Doug McNair) is coming in hot to Thursday's Grand Circuit event. The daughter of Kadabra won an OSS Gold on August 18 at Mohawk to give her a win and two runner-up finishes in three career starts. Apprentice M, who is a half-sister to millionaire trotting mare Charmed Life, has quickly banked $74,850 for owner Menhammer Stuteri Ab. The Kadabra filly was an $85,000 buy at last October's Lexington Select Sale. A pair of fillies with famous mommas will also compete in the second Champlain division. Ciao Dolce (PP5, Chris Christoforou) is the ninth foal out of Pizza Dolce, while Swing It Cathy (PP8, Yannick Gingras) is the seventh foal out of Solveig. Pizza Dolce (1:52.4 - $668,224) and Solveig (1:54.4 - $930,132) each had strong careers on the racetrack, but both have arguably made an even bigger impact as broodmares. Pizza Dolce's foals have included Miss Paris (12 for 30, $869,932) and Bella Dolce (15 for 29, $753,133). Solveig's foals are led by the great Shake It Cerry (29 for 62, $2.8 million) and Uncle Lasse (9 for 29, $971,071) Ciao Dolce, a daughter of Credit Winner, was a $300,000 purchase at the Lexington Selected Yearling Sale. The Per Henriksen trainee is making her second lifetime start on Thursday after finishing third in her debut on August 22. She is owned by Kjell Magne Anderson of Switzerland. Swing It Cathy, a homebred full-sister to Solveig's most famous foals, will be looking to break her maiden for Christina Takter and Solveigs Racing Partners. The Jimmy Takter trainee has hit the board in three of four starts and does have a mark of 1:57.2, taken in a qualifier on July 8. The Champlain Stakes are carded as Races 3 and 6 on Thursday's 10-race program. Champlain action will continue on Friday evening with two-year-old trotting colts and geldings taking their turn. Saturday's Canadian Pacing Derby card will also feature the Champlain Stakes for two-year-old pacers. Post time Thursday, Friday and Saturday is 7:30 p.m. Here are the fields for Thursday's Champlain Stakes. Race 3 - Division 1 1. Northern Lightning by Kadabra (Paul MacDonell/Scott McEneny) 2. Illusioneesta by Kadabra (Chris Christoforou/Per Henriksen) 3. Courtney Hanover by Cantab Hall (Rick Zeron/Rick Zeron) 4. Yokomotion by Justice Hall (Steve Byron/John Bax) 5. Blonde Magic by Muscle Massive (Tom Durand/Tom Durand) 6. Smoke And Mirrors by Kadabra (Trevor Henry/Nifty Norman) 7. Wish I Was There by Wishing Stone (Steve Condren/Clark Beelby) 8. Miss Mimi by Kadabra (Paul MacDonell/John Bax) 9. Bella Glos by Cantab Hall (Yannick Gingras/Jimmy Takter)   Race 6 - Division 2 1. Jordan Blue Chip by Chapter Seven (Paul MacDonell/Mike Keeling) 2. Apprentice M by Kadabra (Doug McNair/Jonas Czernyson) 3. One Fine Lady by Muscle Massive (Doug McNair/Aaron Lambert) 4. Atlanta by Chapter Seven (Rick Zeron/Rick Zeron) 5. Ciao Dolce by Credit Winner (Chris Christoforou/Per Henriksen) 6. Alloveragain by Credit Winner (Randy Waples/John Bax) 7. Asa Ready To Glide by Yankee Glide (Chris Christoforou/Ann Karin Larsen) 8. Swing It Cathy by Donato Hanover (Yannick Gingras/Jimmy Takter) 9. Shamrock Shaker by Holiday Road (Scott Zeron/Rick Zeron)   Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 26 - Rookie pacers got their first taste of Mohawk Grand Circuit harness racing action Saturday night in the Nassagaweya and Eternal Camnation Stakes. The $226,050 Nassagaweya Stakes featured 20 pacing colts and geldings split into two divisions, while a field of nine pacing fillies met up in the $192,333 Eternal Camnation. The second Nassagaweya split was supposed to feature Casie Coleman trainee Summer Travel, but the undefeated son of Western Ideal was scratched early on Saturday due to sickness. Pedro Hanover turned in a strong stretch rally to win the $112,525 division in 1:52.1. Driven by Andrew McCarthy, Pedro Hanover was unhurried in the beginning and got away eighth in the field of nine. The 3/2 favourite would sit near the back and wait for the outer-flow to develop. Courtly Choice was used hard from an outside starting spot and got to the lead at three-eighths and fronted the field by the half in :55.4. Odds On Lauderdale got out from fifth heading into the far turn and came first-up, while Courtly Choice led to three-quarters in 1:24. Pedro Hanover was situated fourth-over and was ninth turning for home. In the stretch, Pedro Hanover unleashed a furious stretch rally and swept by his rivals to win in 1:52.1. Trump That finished 2¼ lengths back in second, while Hudson Phil and Odds On Lauderdale rounded out the top-four finishers. A son of Somebeachsomewhere, Pedro Hanover came into Saturday's contest off a Pennsylvania Sires Stakes victory on August 14. The Andrew Harris trainee was teaming up with McCarthy for the first time Saturday. "It looked like he was far out, but I knew as long as he was within six or seven lengths of them he would catch them," said Harris. "He's just got one of the biggest burst of speed I've ever seen." Owned by Brad Gray and Denise Guerriero, Pedro Hanover was an $80,000 purchase at last November's Harrisburg Yearling Sale. The rookie pacing colt now has three wins in five starts and $114,656 earned. Harris confirmed that Pedro Hanover will head back to Pennsylvania for the Sires Stakes Championship next Saturday. Pedro Hanover paid $5 to win. Pedro Hanover The $113,525 opening division saw Shadow Moon come out on top in a wild finish. The Dr. Ian Moore trained son of Shadow Play started from the second-tier in a field of 11 and got away seventh with driver Trevor Henry. Declan Seelster, the 4/5 favourite, cleared to the lead at three-eighths before surrendering the lead at the half to Babes Dig Me, who finally found the pylons and the front after starting from post-ten. Babes Dig Me faced immediate pressure on the far turn with Dragon Time coming first-up, supplying cover for This Is The Plan and Shadow Moon. The three-quarter time was 1:23.4. The scramble was on in the stretch, as Babes Dig Me gave way. This Is The Plan and Shadow Moon both fired off cover and hooked up for a good stretch battle, which saw Shadow Moon prevail by a head in 1:51.4. Declan Seelster split between rivals late to finish third, while Dragon Time was fourth. Shadow Moon, who suffered his first loss last week in an Ontario Sires Stakes Gold event, is now four for five to start his career and is the first horse (out of 17) to win from the second-tier this season at Mohawk. "It might not have been a bad thing that he was trailing actually," said Henry post-race. "He gets pretty warm, but he's good off a helmet, so it was probably the best thing for him." A $60,000 yearling purchase last November at Harrisburg, Shadow Moon has earned $146,737 for owners Dr. Ian Moore, R G McGroup LTD, Serge Savard and Gordon McComb. Shadow Moon is eligible to next Saturday's Champlain Stakes. He paid $7.90 to win. Shadow Moon Percy Bluechip improved her record to four for four with a gate-to-wire 1:51.4 victory for Henry and Moore in the $192,333 Eternal Camnation Stakes. The undefeated daughter of Shadow Play left from post-eight and got to the lead to post an opening-quarter of :26.4. The 2/5 favourite got front-end respect and was able to catch a soft second-quarter of :29.2. Kissin In The Sand came first-up on the far turn from fourth and got to within in a length of Percy Bluechip, but the Moore trainee was ready for the confrontation. Percy Bluechip paced a :28 third-quarter, followed by a :27.3 kicker to secure the victory. "She's a very special filly," said Moore post-race. "She showed me tonight how sensible she is because I just made a couple bit changes and the plugs again tonight and she was very relaxed warming up...and very relaxed in the race as well." Kendall Seelster, who got a two-hole trip, got out late, but came up a length short to finish second. Kissin In The Sand was third, while Pueblo Blue Chip was fourth. A $110,000 purchase at last year's Forest City Yearling Sale, Percy Bluechip has now banked $240,766 for owners Shadow Two Stable, James & Wilma MacKenzie and Hudson Standardbred Stable Inc. Moore noted that he may skip next week's Champlain Stakes or an OSS Gold the week after in order to have Percy Bluechip primed and ready for the Shes A Great Lady eliminations on September 16. Percy Bluechip paid $2.90 to win. Percy Bluechip Live racing continues Monday night at Mohawk Racetrack. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 26 - The harness racing field is set for the 2017 Canadian Pacing Derby, Canada's oldest harness race, following a pair of $40,000 eliminations on Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack. Keystone Velocity and Rockin Ron captured their respective eliminations to head into next Saturday's $615,000 final with full momentum. Each $40,000 elimination featured a field of eight with the top-five finishers advancing. A $40,000 supplement entry, Keystone Velocity backed up his connections by unleashing a wild :25.1 final-quarter to win the first 'Pacing Derby' elimination in 1:48.2. As expected, Nirvana Seelster shot out from the rail to grab the early lead, but had no challengers going with him. The field of eight lined up in post position order, allowing Nirvana Seelster to call the shots through an opening-half of :55.1. With outside challengers beginning to move up around the far turn, Yannick Gingras angled All Bets Off out of the two-hole to pull up beside 'Nirvana' at three-quarters in 1:22.2. Keystone Velocity, who got away sixth with driver Simon Allard, was into the outer-flow to sit third-over and four and quarter lengths from the lead turning for home. In the stretch, the gritty All Bets Off took the lead, but couldn't fight off a storming Keystone Velocity on the far outside. The Rene Allard trainee fired home in :25.1 to win by a length. All Bets Off held second, while the top-five finishers were rounded out by Dealt A Winner, Nirvana Seelster and Easy Lover Hanover. A nine-year-old son of Western Hanover, Keystone Velocity has been having a tremendous season with six wins in 13 starts entering Saturday's contest. Despite having only one start in the last month heading into the 'Pacing Derby', the Rene Allard trainee was ready to roll. "I was just going to race him to get into the final, but the horse is so sharp," said Simon Allard post-race. "He's (had) a lot of vacation, but we've been training him and keeping him in and keeping him real brave and he was very ready for this race." Keystone Velocity, who won the $500,000 Ben Franklin on July 1, now has $644,250 earned this season to bring his career totals to 26 wins and over $1.1 million earned. The veteran pacer was supplemented to the 'Pacing Derby' last Monday by his owners Allard Racing Inc, Kapildeo Singh and VIP Internet Stable LLC. Although he currently resides and races south of the border, Simon Allard was thrilled to have the opportunity to come back to Canada and compete in Canada's oldest harness race. "I'm glad my brother put him in the Canadian Pacing Derby, it's like a dream come true for me to get to race him," Allard shared. "I used to be in the dorm back in the day as a groom and saw Real Desire and Four Starzzz Shark race in that race and now I'm in it. "It's really a cool time right now and I'm really enjoying it." Keystone Velocity equaled his career-mark with his 1:48.2 mile on Saturday. The Allard trainee paid $6.90 to win. Keystone Velocity The second elimination was the opposite of the first, as Ron Burke trainee Rockin Ron blew the doors off his rivals by going coast to coast in a career-best 1:47.2. Driven by Louis Philippe Roy for the first time, Rockin Ron shot out from post-four to grab the early lead and posted opening-fractions of :26.3 and :54.3. Stablemate Check Six committed first-up on the far turn from fourth, but couldn't make up much ground, as Roy let Rockin Ron blaze a :26.4 third-quarter. There was no stepping off the gas pedal in the stretch, as Rockin Ron pulled away from two-hole resident Sintra to win by 3½ lengths. McWicked finished third, while Check Six and Rockeyed Optimist rounded out the top-five. "The only word I had before the race was Yannick (Gingras) told me he was a nice horse and you can do anything you want with (him)," said Roy post-race. "I just sat behind him and was a passenger and he was strong in the last-quarter." Rockin Ron was coming into Saturday's contest off a solid second-place finish in the Roll With Joe last Sunday at Tioga. The 'Pacing Derby' elimination score gives the Burke trainee six wins in 20 starts this season, 26 victories overall and pushes him passed the $800,000 mark in career earnings. He is owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and RTC Stables Inc. Rockin Ron paid $12.40 to win. Rockin Ron The post positions for next Saturday's $615,000 final were drawn immediately following the eliminations. Keystone Velocity and Rockin Ron earned the right to select their posts. The Canadian Pacing Derby will highlight a stakes packed card next Saturday (September 2) at Mohawk. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Here is the field for the $615,000 Canadian Pacing Derby. 1. McWicked 2. Keystone Velocity 3. Easy Lover Hanover 4. Rockin Ron 5. Rockeyed Optimist 6. All Bets Off 7. Nirvana Seelster 8. Dealt A Winner 9. Sintra 10. Check Six AE: Lyons Snyder Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 25 - On A Sunny Day and Southwind Tesla each picked up a Grand Circuit harness racing victory in Friday's Casual Breeze Stakes at Mohawk Racetrack. A group of 16 three-year-old trotting fillies were split into a pair of $81,412 Casual Breeze divisions. The opening split saw On A Sunny Day take full advantage of an easy opening-half to win in 1:54.2. The Luc Blais trained filly was driven by Sylvain Filion, who opted to put the Ontario Sires Stakes star on the front from post-two. On A Sunny Day cut an opening-quarter of :28.2 before getting a second-quarter breather of :29.4. On A Sunny Day ramped up the tempo with a :28 third-quarter and then proceeded to step home in :28.1 to hold off two-hole challenger The Erm by three-quarters of a length. Winter Sweet Frost finished third, while Highland Top Hill was fourth. "I was just trying to see what unfolded from the gate and only the one horse was leaving, so I thought I would give myself a chance on the front end," Filion said post-race. "She's just a sweetheart. She's not very big, but she's all heart and tonight we got soft fractions and it was pretty easy for her." Owned by Determination of Montreal, Quebec, On A Sunny Day has been a consistent performer for trainer Blais. The daughter of Muscle Mass now has four wins in seven starts this season to improve her career record to eight wins in 13 outings. On A Sunny Day has $179,736 banked this season to increase her career earnings to $363,486. The Blais trainee paid $5 to win. On A Sunny Day The second division featured overwhelming favourite Magic Presto, but it was another filly that would grab the spotlight. Southwind Tesla and driver Phil Hudon came through with a 13-1 upset victory in a career-best 1:54. Magic Presto got away third, but was quickly moved to the lead by Trevor Henry just after an opening-quarter of :28.1. The 1-5 favourite found the front and led through middle-half fractions of :56.4 and 1:25.2. Around the final turn, Hudon came first-up from fifth with Southwind Tesla and that would turn out to be a winning move. Magic Presto was not her usual self and gave way to the challenger in the lane and finished fifth. Southwind Tesla seized the lead and proceeded to hold off a blocked Dream Together and a flying Dream Baby Dream to win by half a length. "I figured that Trevor (Henry) would be going to the front, so I let James (MacDonald - Sweet Of My Heart) in front of me and was hoping to get a second-over maybe," Hudon said post-race. "I ended up grinding up slowly and she felt good when I touched her on the tail coming out of the turn and then it just worked out that Sylvain (Filion - Dream Together) didn't get out until late." Southwind Tesla is co-owned and trained by Rene Dion. The Chapter Seven filly is now three for 11 this season with all three victories coming in her last five starts, including a New York Sires Stakes score on July 20. The Casual Breeze victory puts Southwind Tesla over $100,000 in seasonal earnings and up to $154,739 in career earnings for owners Dion, Suzie Kerwood and David Nicol. The Dion trainee paid $28.10 to win. Southwind Tesla Grand Circuit action continues Saturday evening at Mohawk Racetrack with the Canadian Pacing Derby eliminations, Nassagaweya and Eternal Camnation Stakes. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

AUGUST 24, 2017 - Lady Bubbles scored her third straight Grassroots win at Mohawk Racetrack on Thursday, August 24 to move into a tie atop the two-year-old pacing filly harness racing point standings. A narrow winner in her first two Grassroots starts, Lady Bubbles sprinted down the Mohawk stretch to a one length victory in a personal best 1:55.2 on Thursday. With recently crowned World Driving Champion James MacDonald in the race bike, the fan favourite landed in seventh from Post 5 and made her way toward the front behind two other fillies in the outer lane. Swinging wide off the final turn Lady Bubbles found another gear and reeled in pacesetter Easy Three. Hammering Haley also closed hard to claim third-place honours. "She's a small filly with a big heart," said trainer Mark Steacy of the daughter of Sportswriter and Matter Of Style. "She always seems to have a good kick coming home." Lansdowne, ON resident Steacy conditions Lady Bubbles for owner-breeder Hudson Standardbred Stable Inc. of Hudson, QC. A half-sister to current Ontario Sires Stakes stallion and $636,022 winner Shanghai Phil, Lady Bubbles has tallied three wins, one second and one third for earnings of $49,110 through her first six starts. Her trio of Grassroots victories give her 150 points and a share of top spot in the division standings. Lady Bubbles Color Envy earned her first lifetime win in the second $19,850 Grassroots division, storming up the inside in the stretch to get a neck in front of Pretissimo and Muskoka Moonlight, who had battled for control through the last half of the race. MacDonald, who makes his home in Guelph, picked up his second Grassroots win of the evening, guiding Color Envy from Post 4 to the winner's circle for trainer Scott McEneny and his wife Michelle McEneny of Waterdown, Teresa Davidson of Milton and John Fielding of Toronto, ON. "Training down that filly actually was just as good, if not better than (two-time Gold winner) Big Thong, and then she got hurt in the paddock. She banged her leg and bruised a splint bone, so I kind of had to back off with her so, but she was always training down like a pretty nice filly," said McEneny. "She's great gaited, she's a nice big, strong filly and I think she's only going to get better." The daughter of Mach Three and Pink Is Perfect was a $30,000 purchase out of last fall's Lexington Selected Yearling Sale and in four starts she has now tallied one win, one third and $12,562. Color Envy In the final division Shower Play earned her second Grassroots trophy and moved into a tie for top spot in the division standings with Lady Bubbles. In rein to Sylvain Filion the daughter of Shadow Play and Alice Emily also employed a come-from-behind strategy from Post 3. Seventh through the early going, Filion shifted the filly into the outer lane and then had to tip out three-wide before getting a clear look at the leaders. A :27.1 finishing kick propelled Shower Play past pocket-sitter Love Kills and pacesetter and fan favourite Neon Moon to a one and three-quarter length win in a personal best 1:53.2. "I always said she might be a Gold filly someday, and she kind of confirmed to me tonight that she could probably be one," said Filion, who has driven the filly in all but one of her starts. "She raced really good tonight. I was really pleased with her and hopefully she can still improve over that. " Milton, ON resident Filion crafted the win for trainer Rene Dion and Susanne Kerwood of Rockwood, ON and their partner Martin Leveillee of St-Blaise-Sur-Richelieu, QC. The group offered up $15,000 for the filly at the 2016 Forest City Yearling Sale. In four starts, all in the Grassroots, she has two wins and two seconds for 150 points and earnings of $28,987. Shower Play The two-year-old pacing fillies will make their fifth Grassroots start at Mohawk on Friday, Sept. 1 before wrapping up their regular season at Rideau Carleton Raceway on Sept. 10. The top 10 point earners from the regular season will return to Mohawk for the $50,000 Grassroots Championship on Sept. 30. Before the freshman pacing fillies make their return to Mohawk, the Campbellville oval will host the three-year-old pacing fillies in their fourth Gold Series test on Tuesday, August 29, with a first race post time of 7:30 pm. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: www.ontariosiresstakes.com Ontario Racing

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 24 - Chapter Seven colt Alarm Detector improved his harness racing undefeated streak to four with a series record 1:56 victory in Thursday's Define The World final at Mohawk Racetrack. Scratched down to a field of five rookie trotting colts, Alarm Detector was sent off as the 1/9 favourite in the $34,800 event for the team of driver Trevor Henry and trainer Ben Baillargeon. Cantabernet left from the centre and grabbed the early lead, while Alarm Detector sat just to the outside of the leader passed the opening-quarter in :28.2. Henry was cautious with the heavy-favourite and eventually was able to get Alarm Detector around Cantabernet once the field straightened out into the backstretch. Alarm Detector led by the half in :58.1, before ramping up the tempo :28.3 to lead by a length and half at three-quarters in 1:26.4. In the stretch, Cantabernet angled off the pylons to try and take a shot, but Alarm Detector cruised home in :29.1 to secure the victory by 2 ¼ lengths. Will Can Go finished third. Following the race, Henry talked about securing the lead around three-eighths. "We had a little trouble (clearing), they make it a little tougher when you're going for some more money," Henry said. "But I was just trying to be safe with him and take my time and hopefully get there without making a mistake and he did." Alarm Detector is a perfect four for four with his victories adding up to a combined 18 lengths. "He's good gaited and he's willing. He wants to do it and he likes to do it," said Henry, who added "there is more there" when asked if he's yet to let the rookie loose. Although there was a couple anxious moments early, trainer Baillargeon noted Thursday's race was a good learning experience. "It got a little bumpy at the quarter when we were still three-deep and :28.2, he hasn't done that (before)," Baillargeon said. "Trevor told me that he hit the bike after the first turn, so it got him rattled up a little bit, but he came out of it and survived and it's part of the learning." A $110,000 purchase at last November's Harrisburg Yearling Sale, Alarm Detector has now earned $38,400 for owners Thomas & Elizabeth Rankin, Claude Hamel and Santo Vena heading towards Grand Circuit events. Baillargeon plans to race Alarm Detector in next week's Champlain Stakes, followed up the William Wellwood Memorial. Live racing continues Friday evening at Mohawk Racetrack. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 24 - Drawing post one, locally-trained speedster Nirvana Seelster approaches seven harness racing rivals in the first of two $40,000 Canadian Pacing Derby eliminations at Mohawk Racetrack on Saturday evening. "He seems like the older he gets, the better he gets," shared trainer William Budd. Nirvana Seelster, a six-year-old gelding by Camluck out of the Western Hanover mare No Strikes Against, has won eight races in 23 starts this season, holding a lifetime mark of 1:48.1 taken on July 15 in the $34,000 Preferred Pace. In nearly all of his starts this season, Nirvana Seelster has asserted himself on or near the lead. "He will race in a hole, but he's better up front," Budd said. "He used to race from behind--he won from behind two or three times, but he wasn't good gaited. Then he got into the game [of being on the lead] real good and that was his style; he wants to leave." Leading into this season, Budd did not make any equipment adjustments on Nirvana Seelster. The conditioner attributes Nirvana Seelster's improvement this season to "growth and development" with age and his breeding. "As soon as you change things around on him, he doesn't want that," Budd said. "He wants his own style." Over the last two years, Nirvana Seelster's main stakes appearances have come in the $100,000 Mohawk Gold Cup Invitational and in the Canadian Pacing Derby. Trying his on-the-front style in last year's Gold Cup, Nirvana Seelster finished sixth and then made the only break in his career in the Canadian Pacing Derby elimination after hitting the gate. Finishing second in this year's edition of the Gold Cup, Nirvana Seelster enters the Canadian Pacing Derby off five starts in the Mohawk Preferred, winning twice and finishing second in the rest. "We've gotten invited to the [Gold Cup] just through a little bit of luck," Budd said about the 31-time winner and earner of over $705,000. "He beat some good horses there, but they'll know he's a threat [in the Pacing Derby]." Nirvana Seelster has only been staked to the Canadian Pacing Derby over the last two seasons, as it is a race Budd and owner Bruce Davy have wanted to win. Trevor Henry, who picked up the drive on Nirvana Seelster in late May, will sit behind the 4-1 morning line choice competing against morning-line favourite and Ben Franklin champion Keystone Velocity. The third choice in the opening 'Pacing Derby' elimination is Dealt A Winner, who comes in off a 1:47.4 victory at Tioga Downs in last Sunday's Roll With Joe. "Rick [Zeron] had Shamballa coming into the [Gold Cup] and I needed a driver, so I got Trevor," Budd said. "Trevor and I go back a long way and he was the man for him. But it's still between Trevor and Rick. When the wings of the gate fold in Saturday's third-race, it'll be no secret where the rail starter will be heading with hopes of qualifying for the $615,000 big dance on September 2. "It's a little tougher getting off the rail, but he'll give what he's got," Budd noted. "We just need a little bit of luck. He should be okay." Post time for Saturday's card at Mohawk Racetrack is 7:30 p.m. The Canadian Pacing Derby eliminations are carded as Races 3 and 6. The 12-race program also features two divisions of the Nassagaweya Stakes and a division of the Eternal Camnation Stakes. WEG Communications - Ray Cotolo

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 22 - A group of 16 older pacers will compete in this Saturday's (August 26) Canadian Pacing Derby eliminations at Mohawk Racetrack in search of a harness racing spot in the $615,000 final on September 2. First raced in 1936, the Canadian Pacing Derby is the oldest stakes race in Canadian harness racing. An annual showcase of the finest pacers in the sport, this year's group of entrants is arguably the most competitive in recent memory. The 16 older pacers have been divided evenly into a pair of $40,000 eliminations. The top five finishers from each split advance. Of the 16 entrants in this year's eliminations, six have won over $1 million (All Bets Off, Check Six, Keystone Velocity, Mach It So, McWicked, Wakizashi Hanover), while two are double millionaires (All Bets Off, Mach It So). The first elimination is led by the hard-nosed six-year-old All Bets Off (PP2, Yannick Gingras). The Ron Burke trainee comes to Mohawk a 25-time winner with over $2.6 million earned during his racing career. All Bets Off is three for 16 this season and has banked $376,688. Despite having only won seven of 43 starts over the last 18 months, the Burke trainee has made over $1 million, finishing outside the top-five just six-times. A son of Bettors Delight, All Bets Off most recently finished fourth in the Roll With Joe last Sunday at Tioga Downs. The opening elimination also features Wakizashi Hanover (PP3, TBA), the winner of the 2015 Pepsi North America Cup. The five-year-old gelding has yet to make a big impact in the older pacing division, but the Joann Looney King trainee has tremendous speed, including a 1:47.3 career-mark posted in July at The Meadowlands, and could benefit from a return to the site of his biggest victory. Wakizashi Hanover is the second-highest earner in his elimination with $1.5 million banked. The other millionaire in the first split is the $40,000 supplement entry Keystone Velocity (PP6, Simon Allard). The Rene Allard trainee has won six of 13 starts this season and his connections opted to supplement him to this year's 'Pacing Derby' on Monday morning. Keystone Velocity, who won July's $500,000 Ben Franklin at Pocono, is a 25-time winner with over $1.1 million in career earnings. Local standout Nirvana Seelster (PP1, Trevor Henry) will look to protect home soil in the first elimination. The Bill Budd trained six-year-old gelding has won eight of 23 starts this season and has hit the board in 13 of his last 14 starts. Rounding out the field for the first elimination is Dealt A Winner (PP4, David Miller), Dudes The Man (PP5, Jody Jamieson), Evenin Of Pleasure (PP7, Brett Miller) and Easy Lover Hanover (PP8, Doug McNair). The second elimination is headlined by the red-hot Check Six (PP7, Yannick Gingras). The Ron Burke trained four-year-old is coming into the 'Pacing Derby' eliminations off back-to-back victories in the Sam McKee Memorial at The Meadowlands and Dan Patch Stakes at Hoosier Park. Check Six, who banked over $1 million last season, appears to have shed the four-year-old blues after going winless in nine starts prior to the Sam McKee Memorial. The Burke student is an 18-time winner with over $1.5 million earned. Another four-year-old standout in the second elimination is Sintra (PP1, Jody Jamieson). The gelded son of Mach Three captured this year's Graduate Series final and has won seven of 11 starts heading into the 'Pacing Derby' elimination. McWicked (PP3, David Miller), who won this year's Mohawk Gold Cup, will be seeking another big victory at the Campbellville oval. The six-year-old Casie Coleman trainee is nearing double millionaire status and is six for 18 this season. The richest horse in the second elimination is seven-year-old gelding Mach It So (PP2, David Miller). The Jeff Bamond Jr. trainee captured the $427,000 William Haughton Memorial last month at The Meadowlands. Mach It So, who is a 37-time winner with over $2.1 million earned, has earned a cheque in all 16 of his starts this season, while making three visits to the winner's circle. The second elimination is completed by Rockin Ron (PP4, Louis Philippe Roy), Lyons Snyder (PP5, Brett Miller), Rockeyed Optimist (PP6, Brett Miller) and Shamballa (PP8, Scott Zeron). The Canadian Pacing Derby eliminations are carded as Races 3 and 6 on Saturday's 12-race program. Saturday's card also features two-year-old pacers in Grand Circuit action. A group of 21 rookie pacing colts and geldings have been split into two Nassagaweya divisions, while 10 two-year-old pacing fillies will square off in a single division of the Eternal Camnation. Headlining the Nassagaweya Stakes is Western Ideal colt Summer Travel, who will start from post-seven in the $112,525 10-horse second division. The Casie Coleman trained rookie is three for three to start his career and is currently North America's fastest two-year-old with a mark of 1:50.3 taken in the Dream Maker Series on August 7. David Miller picks up the drive behind the talented freshman. The opening split of the Nassagaweya will feature a field of 11 competing for a purse of $113,525. The $192,333 Eternal Camnation Stakes is led by Shadow Play filly Percy Bluechip. The Dr. Ian Moore trainee dazzled in her career debut on July 9 at Georgian Downs, winning an Ontario Sires Stakes Gold in 1:51.2. The sensational rookie has since followed up with a pair of OSS Gold victories, including last Saturday night at Mohawk. Trevor Henry will guide Percy Bluechip from post-nine. The Nassagaweya Stakes are carded as Races 5 and 10, while the Eternal Camnation Stakes is carded as Race 8. Post time for Saturday's card is 7:30 p.m. Below are the fields for Saturday's stakes races. Canadian Pacing Derby - Elimination #1 - $40,000 1. Nirvana Seelster (Henry/Budd) 2. All Bets Off (Gingras/Burke) 3. Wakizashi Hanover (TBA/Looney King) 4. Dealt A Winner (D. Miller/Silva) 5. Dudes The Man (Jamieson/Okusko Jr) 6. Keystone Velocity (S. Allard/R. Allard) 7. Evenin Of Pleasure (B. Miller/Burke) 8. Easy Lover Hanover (McNair/Wallace) Canadian Pacing Derby - Elimination #2 - $40,000 1. Sintra (Jamieson/Hebert) 2. Mach It So (D. Miller/Bamond Jr) 3. McWicked (D. Miller/Coleman) 4. Rockin Ron (Roy/Burke) 5. Lyons Snyder (B. Miller/Takter) 6. Rockeyed Optimist (B. Miller/Elliott) 7. Check Six (Gingras/Burke) 8. Shamballa (S. Zeron/R. Zeron)   Nassagaweya Stakes - Division #1 - $113,525 1. Albergo Hanover (Cullen/Cullen) 2. This Is The Plan (D. Miller/Ryder) 3. Street Boy (McNair/Coleman) 4. Treasure Writer (MacDonell/MacDonell) 5. Dragon Time (Jamieson/Hebert) 6. Twin B Tuffenuff (B. Miller/Elliott) 7. Levis Day (Henry/Puddy) 8. Declan Seelster (Jamieson/Hebert) 9. Phil The Thrill (Christoforou/Sucee) 10. Babes Dig Me (Filion/Alagna) 11. Shadow Moon (Henry/Moore) Nassagaweya Stakes - Division #2 - $112,525 1. Odds On Lauderdale (S. Zeron/Alagna) 2. Torrin Hanover (Waples/Bardier Jr) 3. Trump That (Jamieson/Hebert) 4. Casimir Richie P (Henry/Moore) 5. Hudson Phil (J. MacDonald/Steacy) 6. California Cruisin (Gingras/Johansson) 7. Summer Travel (D. Miller/Coleman) 8. Pedro Hanover (Gingras/Harris) 9. BrackleyBeach (MacDonell/Moore) 10. Courtly Choice (B. Miller/MacIntosh)   Eternal Camnation Stakes - $192,333 1. Apothic (R. Zeron/Brethour) 2. Play The Bell (D. Miller/Coleman) 3. Kissin In The Sand (Gingras/Johansson) 4. Pueblo Blue Chip (Jamieson/Hebert) 5. Miss Mary Mach (Filion/O'Sullivan) 6. Im With Her (MacDonell/MacDonell) 7. Kendall Seelster (Waples/Reid) 8. Ella Is Awesome (Gingras/Johansson) 9. Percy Bluechip (Henry/Moore) 10. Delaney R (D. Miller/Coleman)   Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 21 - Cantab Hall filly Courtney Hanover and harness racing trainer/driver Rick Zeron came out on top in a tight Photo Finish to win Monday's $35,200 Pure Ivory Series Final at Mohawk Racetrack. Courtney Hanover fought off an outside charging Jordan Blue Chip, who was the 3/2 favourite, to score the series finale victory at odds of 6-1. Zeron blasted his filly off the wings of the gate from the rail and fronted the field by the opening-quarter in :29. Shazamm, who won a first leg division, was moved to the lead from third and led the group by the half in :58. Courtney Hanover sat in the two-hole on the far turn, while Shazamm showed the way to three-quarters in 1:27.3. Outside challengers developed on the far turn and Jordan Blue Chip was situated third-over and ready for the stretch drive. In the stretch, Zeron was able to angle off the pylons and find clear racing room for his filly with an eighth of a mile to go. Meanwhile, Jordan Blue Chip was in full flight on the far outside for driver Paul MacDonell and looking to power by Courtney Hanover in the final stride. The two fillies hit the line together in 1:56.2 and it took a Photo Finish to determine Courtney Hanover had prevailed by the narrowest of margins. "No I didn't think I won," admitted Zeron post-race. "I knew my filly was digging real hard down the lane when I shook loose, but I didn't think I got up to beat Paul (MacDonell) because Paul had real good momentum going, but my filly dug in like the last time I raced her here." Courtney Hanover won an opening leg division of the Pure Ivory on August 7, but was scratched from the second leg due to sickness. "She cleared up real good and Dr. Malone I take my hat off, he took care of this filly and got her prepped up to where she is tonight," noted Zeron. "I'm real happy with her, she's a real nice filly." Courtney Hanover was a $47,000 purchase at last November's Harrisburg Yearling Sale. She now sports a record of two for five with $28,100 earned for owners Rick Zeron Stables, Paul Marion, Bruno Dipoce and Howard Taylor. The clocking of 1:56.2 lowered the Cantab Hall filly's career-mark by a fifth of a second. Zeron noted that Courtney Hanover's next start will be in the Champlain Stakes on August 31 followed by the Peaceful Way eliminations in September. The top-five finishers in Monday's Pure Ivory final were rounded out by Alloveragain, Ex Hanover and Strength Of A Woman. A $2 win ticket on Courtney Hanover returned $14.20. Courtney Hanover Live racing continues Tuesday night at Mohawk Racetrack. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

AUGUST 19, 2017 - Two-year-old pacers were in the harness racing spotlight at Mohawk Racetrack on Saturday night, competing in four Ontario Sire Stakes Gold Series divisions worth a total of $390,400. The two fastest divisions were clocked in 1:51.4, one by pacing colt Declan Seelster in his first lifetime start, and the other by pacing filly Percy Bluechip in her third straight Gold win. In the first pacing colt division, Declan Seelster and driver Jody Jamieson of Moffat, ON lined up at Post 6 and landed on the rail in seventh as Jimmy Freight took the field to a :27 opening quarter. Fan favourite Shadow Moon took command on the way to the :55.3 half and continued to lead at the 1:23.3 three-quarters, while Jamieson opted to keep Declan Seelster on the rail. In the stretch a sliver of racetrack opened up on the rail and, after some manoeuvering, Jamieson was able to squeeze Declan Seelster up the inside to a head victory over a duelling Shadow Moon and Jimmy Freight. "Putting him in there tonight, I really wished I could have had a maiden start into him. I just told Jody (Jamieson) not to sacrifice him, you know, put him in a spot where if he can win he can win, but it's an awful lot to ask," said trainer Dave Menary. "That qualifier (1:55.4 on August 8) was his very first time behind the gate. We did stretch him out a little bit the last three-quarters aiming for this, but you know there's a difference when they're down to the quarter in :27 or they're down to the quarter in :33." Declan Seelster's debut was a long-awaited one for the Cambridge resident and his partners Michael Guerriero of Brampton, Denis Breton of Welland, ON and Tim Purkiss of Port Coquitlam, BC. Menary had been impressed with the colt early in his education, but some growing pains in the spring caused the trainer to back off with the son of Big Jim and Demi Seelster, who was a $48,000 purchase out of last fall's Forest City Yearling Sale. "February-March he was definitely my favourite colt. He just did a lot of growing and his feet were really bothering him right when baby races were getting started," recalled Menary. "I backed off and worked on his feet, and actually I sent him to a friend of mine, Brian Lee, to go on the TheraPlate and swim for two weeks. Brian did a great job and that really helped him turn the corner. "And Frank O'Toole was a very good help with the horse, and Jeff Courchesne takes care of him and does a very good job, so just everybody working together," Menary continued. "I appreciate my partners' patience, everybody was getting a little antsy because I touted the colt so much, so early, and they're watching all our other colts out there racing and winning, and I kept telling them. 'It's gonna be okay, it's gonna be okay,' and tonight their patience was rewarded." Declan Seelster The patience of trainer Dr. Ian Moore and driver Trevor Henry was tested in the evening's last Gold division as Percy Bluechip arrived at Mohawk for her third start with a newfound level of aggression. "She was a handful warming up tonight, holy smokes," said Dr. Moore. "She took off right there on the track on me, like pretty well ran away with me tonight warming up, and I turned her to go the right way thinking that might help and that was worse, so I put ear plugs in her to race, she's never had them in in her life." The ear plugs did not help Henry in the post parade as Percy Bluechip once again tried to start the race early. With some assistance Henry was able to get the filly settled and the Arthur, ON resident kept her at a walk until the starter called the fillies to the gate. Fortunately, once the gate started to roll Percy Bluechip was all business and after getting away second from Post 2, Henry sent her after the lead just after the :28 quarter and she rolled through a :56.2 half and 1:24.1 three-quarters on the way to her third Gold Series win. Kendall Seelster finished one and one-half lengths back in second and Play The Bell was another length back in third. "I think she took a lot out of herself warming up tonight, she had to, it's impossible that she didn't," said Dr. Moore. "She's a very smart filly so I'm hoping that this is a phase she's going through and that she will eventually settle down and relax a bit, but at least she was good in the race, so that's good to know." Moore shares ownership of the daughter of Shadow Play and Advantest with his partners in the Shadow Two Stable of Puslinch, ON, James and Wilma Mackenzie of Ennismore, ON and Hudson Standardbred Stable Inc. of Hudson, QC. The group, who offered up $110,000 to acquire the filly from the Forest City Yearling Sale, was hoping Percy Bluechip would make her open stake debut in the Eternal Camnation at Mohawk on August 26, but Moore is tempering expectations after Saturday's fractious outing. "We're hoping to go in the Eternal Camnation next week, but it doesn't give me much time to resolve some of that situation, to get her under control," said the Puslinch resident. "Hopefully I'll have a little bit of equipment on her to settle her a bit. I don't want to T her off, but I've got to do something." Percy Bluechip The other pacing filly Gold trophy went home with Lady Grande, who went gate-to-wire from Post 6, hitting the wire three and three-quarter lengths ahead of Delaney R and Lady Ella in 1:52.3. Jonathan Drury of Guelph engineered the win for trainer Victor Puddy of Mountain, ON and owners Keith Cassell of Smiths Falls, Lloyd Stone of Portland, Jerome Voldock of Arnprior and numbered company Ontario 1085195 of Gloucester, ON. The group purchased the daughter of Big Jim and Lady Latte out of last fall's Canadian Yearling Sale for $25,000 and Lady Grande has returned $97,992 from one win, four seconds and one third in seven starts. Lady Grande Hudson Phil captured the other pacing colt division, making a successful leap up from the Grassroots Series for trainer Mark Steacy of Lansdowne, ON and owner-breeder Hudson Standardbred Stable Inc. of Hudson, QC. The son of Shanghai Phil and Hazel, in rein to newly crowned World Driving Champion James MacDonald of Guelph, also found racing room along the rail, sprinting from fifth at the top of the stretch to a two and one-quarter length victory in 1:52.4. Favourite Evening Play was second and Taste Of History was third. Hudson Phil The two-year-old pacing fillies and colts return to Mohawk Racetrack for their fourth Gold Series event, the fillies on Friday, Sept. 8 and the colts on Saturday, Sept. 9. Two-year-old pacing fillies will also be featured at Mohawk Racetrack on Thursday, August 24 as the Campbellville oval hosts the fourth Grassroots event for the novices, with a first race post time of 7:30 pm. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: www.ontariosiresstakes.com To view Saturday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Saturday Results - Mohawk Racetrack. Ontario Racing

AUGUST 18, 2017 - Mohawk Racetrack hosted the two-year-old trotting colts and fillies on Friday evening and the harness racing novices put on an impressive show in a trio of Ontario Sire Stakes Gold Series divisions. The fillies jump started the evening and Apprentice M's effort had trainer Jonas Czernyson's heart beating a little quicker than normal as she toured the Mohawk oval on the front end. Starting from Post 5, Apprentice M was sitting fourth when Sorceress Seelster reached the opening quarter in :28.3, but driver Doug McNair of Guelph, ON soon moved the fan favourite to the front and Apprentice M sailed through fractions of :59 and 1:28 on her way to a three-quarter length win in 1:57.2 Sorceress Seelster finished second and Miss Mimi was third. "I was hoping for a come from behind trip with her and not being in the lead, but she did it and she got the job done from there, so I'm very happy with that," said Czernyson, adding that his concern about her early move to the front was rooted in an equipment change made after her August 4 runner-up effort at The Meadowlands. "A green horse and the first time open bridle too, so it was a little like 'I don't know if this is going to work', but she got it done." The win was Apprentice M's first after a pair of runner-up finishes, the other coming in the July 25 Gold Leg at Mohawk. A Kadabra half-sister to $1.3 million winner Charmed Life, Apprentice M was an $85,000 yearling acquisition at last fall's Lexington Selected Sale by Menhammar Stuteri AB of Paris, KY and Czernyson had high expectations for her early in the training process. "She's done everything right from Day 1, pretty much, so I've been very pleased with her," said the New Jersey-based trainer. "She's kind of a nice going filly and pretty easy to get along with." Apprentice M The winner of the second $94,800 trotting filly division is also pretty easy to get along with, and just over an hour after her third straight Gold Series win Kadabra Queen was gobbling down her dinner and heading back outside to her paddock. "We're sitting here waiting for her to eat her dinner so I can turn her back out with her girlfriend and she'll go and spend the night outside tonight," said trainer Chad Milner. "She lived outside all winter, no blanket, the whole nine yards. I think she's maybe spent five nights in the barn this year." The natural life clearly suits the Kadabra daughter, who has not been worse than third in six starts through her freshman campaign. On Friday she and driver Scott Coulter of Brantford, ON went gate-to-wire from Post 4, rolling through fractions of :29.1, :58.3 and 1:27.2 on the way to a one length victory in a personal best 1:57.1. Northern Lightning and favourite Smoke And Mirrors finished second and third. "We're very happy with her, first time on the front end, wire-to-wire, real happy," said Milner, adding that he had considered making his own equipment change after the filly made a brief bobble at the start of an overnight event at Mohawk on August 4 that resulted in a third-place finish. "I was too scared to change anything," Milner admitted with a laugh. "I tried all week and I warmed her up in the (ear) plugs and she was fine, but I was like, you know what she's already won two Golds without them, I'm just going to leave them out." Owned by breeder Harness Horsepower Inc. of Campbellville and Frank Monte of Markham, Kadabra Queen boosted her earnings to $150,900 with the win and stretched her lead out to 50 points in the two-year-old trotting filly division standings. Kadabra Queen In the $124,200 trotting colt Gold division, Perfetto got a steady steer from Arthur, ON resident Trevor Henry, who sat mid-pack with the fan favourite for much of the race, waiting until the stretch to ask the novice trotter for a second gear. Perfetto responded with a sharp finishing kick that propelled him to a two and three-quarter length victory over Winning American in 1:57.3. Union Jack was well behind the leaders in third. "I think he's going to be a really nice colt. He's very green and he's a little goofy, as we saw last week when he kind of made a break," said trainer Richard "Nifty" Norman. "He's just a little unsettled yet, but Trevor did a fantastic job driving him, and kept him really quiet. You know, the main thing was just to get him round in one piece and try and teach him something, and he did that and got paid for doing it, so it worked out really good." Friday's outing was just Perfetto's second lifetime, he finished third in the August 1 Gold Leg at Mohawk, recovering from a bobble going to the half. The Majestic Son gelding, who was a $32,000 purchase from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale, is owned by Norman's Enzed Racing Stable of Allentown, NJ and his partners David McDuffee of Delray Beach, FL and Joe Hansford of Foothill, AB. Perfetto The two-year-old trotting fillies and trotting colts will return to Mohawk Racetrack for their fourth Gold Series starts on Sept. 25 and 26 after a series of open stake events, starting with the Champlain Stakes on August 31 and Sept. 1. On Saturday the Campbellville oval will host the two-year-old pacing colts and fillies as they battle in their third Gold Series event. The pacing fillies will compete in Races 2 and 8, while the colts duel in Races 5 and 7. Mohawk Racetrack's first race goes in behind the starting gate at 7:30 pm. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: www.ontariosiresstakes.com Ontario Racing

AUGUST 17, 2017 - Fresh off a runner-up performance in the Hambletonian Oaks, Magic Presto returned to Ontario Sires Stakes harness racing competition at Mohawk Racetrack on Thursday and cruised to her second Gold Series win of the season. Starting from Post 1, driver Trevor Henry settled Magic Presto in third as Winter Sweet Frost rang up early fractions of :28.1 and :57.1. Heading for the 1:26.1 three-quarters Henry sent the heavy favourite to the outside and Magic Presto coasted down the stretch to a one length victory in 1:55.1. Winter Sweet Frost finished second and Gravitator was third. "Nice and handy and not too hard a run, so I was pleased with the way things worked out," said trainer Richard "Nifty" Norman. "We've got a really busy month coming up, so anytime you can get a relatively easy run, it's good for everybody." In the next month Magic Presto and her peers have a series of open stake races at Mohawk starting with the Casual Breeze on August 25, followed by the Simcoe Stakes on Sept. 1 and the Elegantimage eliminations Sept. 9, with the final on Sept. 16. The last Gold Series event goes postward at Grand River Raceway on Sept. 27 and the season ending Super Final is Oct. 14 at Mohawk. With that schedule in mind Norman said Magic Presto will enjoy a lighter than normal training routine in the coming weeks, but overall the New Jersey-based trainer is pleased with the filly's condition at the mid-point of her sophomore campaign. "She's in really good shape physically, she's carrying a lot of weight, so I'm really happy with that part of it," said the trainer. "She's pretty laid back, and she's a good eater; she's a pretty happy horse, so not much worries her." In her 18 career starts the laidback daughter of Kadabra and In The Mean Time boasts a record of nine wins, five seconds and two thirds for total earnings of $755,159. Norman trains the filly for Melvin Hartman of Ottawa, ON, Herb Liverman of Miami Beach, FL, David McDuffee of Delray Beach, FL and Little E LLC of New York, NY. Magic Presto Sweet Of My Heart also picked up her second Gold Series win on Thursday, although her journey back to the Ontario Sires Stakes winner's circle was far more tortured than Magic Presto's. Both fillies scored their first Gold Series win at Mohawk on June 8, but since then Magic Presto has not been worse than second racing against the very best fillies in North America while Sweet Of My Heart checked herself out of two straight Gold Legs after making breaks behind the starting gate and was forced to requalify. "That running off a couple starts was no fun for anybody," said trainer Paul Reid. "When you don't even get to race because you're on the break, that makes for a long night." After the miscues Reid and his wife Laurie teamed up with driver Jody Jamieson and the group has been working tirelessly, on and off the racetrack, to keep Sweet Of My Heart on an even keel. Their efforts paid off Thursday as the Angus Hall daughter got away cleanly from Post 6 and led the field through fractions of :27.1, :57.1 and 1:26 on her way to a 1:55.4 victory, keeping a head in front of fan favourite and division point leader On A Sunny Day. Majestic Kat was well back of the leaders in third. "Jody did a good job of keeping her quiet in the post parade. Usually, as soon as she sees the starting gate, a little switch flips, and he's been putting her right up on it and just kind of letting her get more relaxed behind it, kind of forcing her to get more relaxed behind it," said Reid, who trains Sweet Of My Heart for owner-breeder Robert Key of Leechburg, PA. "And we've schooled her a couple times, and he qualified her for me, and he's been working with me so we've re-rigged her and right now she's controllable, so that's our main thing. If she's controllable she can trot with them. Otherwise, you've seen what can happen when she's not." For his part, Jamieson was pleased with Sweet Of My Heart's performance, but said there is still room for improvement from the winner of $207,900. "Tonight she was much improved, but she's still not back to where she was when Louis (Roy) won with her early in the summer," said the Moffat, ON resident, referring to the 1:55 personal best the filly recorded in her June 8 victory. Sweet Of My Heart Like Magic Presto, Sweet Of My Heart is eligible to all of the open stake events in the coming weeks, but Reid said the decision to compete in each event will depend on the filly's performance in the days leading up to the entry deadlines. Mohawk Racetrack continues to showcase the Ontario Sires Stakes Gold Series this weekend, hosting the two-year-old trotting colts and fillies on Friday, August 25 and the two-year-old pacing colts and fillies on Saturday, August 19. Post time for both events is 7:30 pm. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: www.ontariosiresstakes.com Ontario Racing

49 to 64 of 2665