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JULY 24, 2017 - Round two of the freshman pacing filly Ontario Sire Stakes Gold Series division was identical to round one as Percy Bluechip and Big Thong captured their second straight harness racing victories at Mohawk Racetrack on Monday evening. Off her Canadian and Ontario Sires Stakes record mile in the July 9 season opener at Georgian Downs, Percy Bluechip was sent off as the heavy favourite in the first $96,400 division. Starting from Post 2 Percy Bluechip and driver Trevor Henry of Arthur, ON floated off the starting gate and settled briefly in third as Mrs Bailey reached the opening quarter in :26.3, but heading down the backstretch the favourites took aim on the lead. On top by almost two lengths at the :55.2 half and just over two at the 1:23.4 three-quarters, Percy Bluechip left the field behind in the stretch, pulling away to a five length victory in 1:51.4. Lady Grande and Play The Bell finished second and third. "I just finished talking to Trevor (Henry) and he said that she won very easy," said trainer Dr. Ian Moore. "When he moved her she wanted to go 100 miles an hour there, and she put in a few little steps, not really steps, just trying to get going 100 I guess is what she was doing, but then she relaxed and he just spoke to her around the final turn, that's all he did, never touched her or anything, so she did that on her own." The Puslinch, ON resident shares ownership of Percy Bluechip with his partners in the Shadow Two Stable of Puslinch, James and Wilma Mackenzie of Ennismore, ON and Hudson Standardbred Stable of Hudson, QC. The partners purchased the daughter of Shadow Play and Advantest for $110,000 at last fall's Forest City Yearling Sale and through two starts she has returned $96,400. "I think she's a very special filly and I'm going to manage her as best I can," said Dr. Moore. "It's very important with young horses to take care of them - you take care of them, they'll take care of you." Percy Bluechip is eligible to a number of open stake races and Dr. Moore and his partners are hoping that she can compete against the best two-year-old pacing fillies in North America in races like the Eternal Camnation, Champlain Stakes and Shes A Great Lady at Mohawk. "Hopefully she's going to be good enough to go with them. I mean, as you know, every year, in any particular OSS class, there's only one or two out of each division that will ever do with the American-breds, so I am being realistic about that," noted Dr. Moore. "I guess time will tell, but that's what we're striving for anyway, at this point in time." Percy Bluechip Unlike Percy Bluechip, Big Thong has just one open stake race on her agenda this summer, the Champlain Stakes on Sept. 2. "I had three or four other fillies that I paid up in the Shes A Great Lady and Breeders Crown and stuff, because they were looking better than her. She was just kind of plain ordinary and I didn't pay her up in anything," said trainer Scott McEneny. "I just paid her in the Sires Stakes, and then when she started stepping up I figured I'd pay the Champlain, so she only has the Sires Stakes and the Champlain. I wish I had her in the other stuff, but in hind sight it might be all right, she's only going to have about eight, nine starts into her. She's going to be a nice big mare next year, it'll be better." Big Thong scored her second straight Gold Series victory from Post 3 in the second division and the Big Jim daughter also ran into some difficulty reaching the front. Sitting fourth at the :27 quarter posted by Just Her Luck, Big Thong was making a move up the outside as the fillies rolled into the backstretch when she was nudged out wide by Oxford Comma, who shifted into the outer lane from third. As soon as Oxford Comma reached the front, posting a :55.1 half, Big Thong was rolling on by and had taken a one and three-quarter length lead by the 1:23.1 three-quarters. Sudden Passing took a run at the leader in the stretch, but Big Thong refused to yield, hitting the wire one and one-quarter lengths the best in a personal best 1:52.1. Sudden Passing settled for second with Just Her Luck third. "She actually got used pretty hard there tonight. It would've been easier if he (driver Robert Shepherd with Oxford Comma) didn't pull out in front of us there, we would've got to the front a lot easier," noted McEneny. "It would have been a lot easier race; anyways we got the job done." James MacDonald of Guelph, ON crafted the win for the trainer, his wife Michelle McEneny of Waterdown, Teresa Davidson of Milton, Martwest Racing Stable of Mississauga and Cora Marshall of Jarvis, ON. The partners purchased Big Thong from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale for $20,000 US and she has earned $99,500 in her first three lifetime starts. Big Thong The next opportunity for Percy Bluechip and Big Thong to add to their Ontario Sires Stakes trophy collection comes August 19 at Mohawk Racetrack. More provincial trophies will be awarded at Mohawk on Tuesday evening as the two-year-old trotting fillies arrive at the Campbellville oval for their second Gold Series event. Post time for Tuesday's event is 7:30 pm and the fillies will compete in Races 3 and 6. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

CAMPBELLVILLE, July 24 - The harness racing 'Photo Finish Camera' was put to good use to determine the winner of Monday night's Dream Maker Series opening leg at Mohawk Racetrack. Summer Travel held off inside rival Trump That by the smallest of margins to win the seven-horse $14,000 first leg. Coming in off an impressive 1:51.4 victory in his career debut, Summer Travel and driver Louis Philippe Roy got away fourth in the early-going, while Trump That went to the front for driver Jody Jamieson. Trump That posted soft opening-fractions of :28.3 and :58.4, which forced Roy to come first up just before the half with the heavy-favourite. Summer Travel cleared to command entering the far turn and ramped up the tempo by taking the field down to three-quarters in 1:26.3. In the stretch, Summer Travel was in full flight trying to stay ahead of his rival, but Trump That wasn't going away quietly and came charging with a late bid up the rail. The rookies hit the line together in 1:53.4. It took roughly five-minutes for Summer Travel to be declared the winner in a tight photo-finish. A son of Western Ideal, Summer Travel is trained by Casie Coleman for owners West Wins Stables, Mac Nichol and Calhoun Racing Limited. The $35,000 Harrisburg purchase is now two for two with $14,000 earned to start his career. Trump That, who is trained by Dave Menary, was one for one coming into Monday's Dream Maker leg. The gelded son of Somebeachsomewhere was an $80,000 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale purchase for owners Menary Racing Inc., Michael Guerriero, Kenneth Ewen and Bruce Norris. Dragon Time, who is also trained by Menary, finished third, while Courtly Choice finished fourth for trainer Blake MacIntosh. Summer Travel paid $2.40 to win. Summer Travel The second leg of the Dream Maker Series is scheduled for next Monday (July 31). Live racing continues Tuesday night at Mohawk Racetrack. An Ontario Sires Stakes Gold leg for two-year-old filly trotters and a $34,000 Preferred Trot highlight the 10-race card. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

JULY 22, 2017 - Ontario's elite three-year-old trotters and pacers were showcased at Mohawk Racetrack on Saturday and Milton resident Sylvain Filion guided three of his eight mounts to victory in their respective harness racing Gold Series divisions. Filion, currently the leading driver in the Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) and a four-time winner of the year-end Lampman Cup award, got things rolling in the first race guiding three-year-old trotting filly On A Sunny Day to her second straight Gold Series victory. The fan favourite trotted under the wire in a personal best 1:53.3, four and one-half lengths ahead of pacesetter Royal Witch. Gisele Treelane was well back in third. "She raced good, we got a nice two-hole trip and as soon as I moved her out of the two-hole halfway around the last turn I knew she was the winner," said Filion. "She felt good, she trotted home strong, I never pulled the plugs on her, she was just very good tonight." On A Sunny Day Filion drives On A Sunny Day for trainer Luc Blais of Lochaber Ouest and owner Determination of Montreal, QC. A four-time Gold Series winner at two, the Muscle Mass daughter sports a lifetime record of seven wins, two seconds and earnings of $298,680 in 11 starts. The driver then completed a sweep of the three-year-old trotting colt divisions with a pair of Kadabra sons, notching a 1:56.1 victory with Magic Night and a 1:55 triumph with R First Class. Clarion Hall and Scene A Magician finished behind fan favourite Magic Night, while R First Class held off favourite Try Try Again and LMC Mass Gem. Magic Night "That first one of Susie Kerwood's (Magic Night), that was the first time I drove him and he's a nice big trotter," said Filion. "Once he got to the front he was pretty lazy, I had to chase him the whole way, but at the top of the stretch he found another gear. In the post parade he was pretty grabby, like he was almost hot, and then during the race he was lazy, almost caught me off guard there." Filion has now driven R First Class four times, steering the gelding to three wins and one second, and the reinsman is impressed with how the youngster is developing. The son of former Gold winner World Class Image ($300,756) has made just seven starts lifetime. "He got a little tired late, but he hung on for the win, he raced tough," said the reinsman. "He's still learning. He's a nice, big strong trotter and I'm pretty sure he's much better covered up, so hopefully next time out we'll be able to race him covered up." R First Class It was the second straight Gold Series win for Kadabra gelding Magic Night, who is trained by Susanne Kerwood for Tommy Andersson, both of Rockwood, and the first-ever OSS win for R First Class, who is trained by Guelph resident Benoit Baillargeon and owned by breeders Thomas and Elizabeth Rankin of St. Catharines, ON. Top three-year-old pacing colt Classic Pro returned to Gold Series action Saturday after finishing third in the Meadowlands Pace in New Jersey on July 15. With regular reinsman Trevor Henry of Arthur, ON in the race bike the Shadow Play son cruised to a 1:51 victory over Calvin K and Red John. Dr. Ian Moore of Puslinch, ON conditions Classic Pro for his partners R G McGroup Ltd of Bathurst, NB and Serge Savard of St-Bruno, QC and the horseman was very satisfied with his star pupil's second Gold Series win. "He's good, real good. He came home the Sunday (July 16) and I gave him Monday, Tuesday off, and then I jogged him Wednesday, Thursday, and then actually I did what I used to do with his father, I trained him yesterday, the day before, because the last time he raced in the Gold he was just so-so, if you remember," said Moore, who also trained Shadow Play. "That's after he had a rough week the week before where he raced really good in the North America Cup (finishing fourth), and then I went real easy on him and he was no good when I was easy on him, so he likes a bit of work." Classic Pro The second pacing colt division went to Sports Column, who picked up his first win of the season for trainer Blake MacIntosh of Cambridge, ON and his partners Hutt Racing Stable of Paoli, PA and Daniel Plouffe of Bromont, QC. In rein to Campbellville, ON resident Chris Christoforou, Jr. the son of Sportswriter hit the wire in a personal best 1:50.3, two lengths ahead of Dreamfair B J and two more up on Bills Fella. "It's very satisfying," said MacIntosh of the colt's victory. "We've been fighting with him all year trying to get him right. He's raced okay, but he just hasn't been himself. "We schooled him there a couple weeks ago and he schooled great, and then we qualified him and he qualified great, and then he raced great tonight," the trainer added. Sports Column Nascar Seelster captured the other pacing colt split in a personal best 1:51.4 for driver Randy Waples and trainer Bob McIntosh. Favourites Filion and Tymal Peacemaker were second and Streakavana was third. Windsor resident McIntosh shares ownership of the Mach Three son with Dave Boyle of Bowmanville, Mardon Stables of Loretto and James Walker of Port Perry, ON. Nascar Seelster Milton, ON resident Waples also captured the second trotting filly division with Tymal Reign, besting Janderson and Majestic Kat in 1:55.4. Waples crafted the Kadabra daughter's first OSS win for trainer Per Henriksen of Norwood and owners Steve Organ of Aurora and Asa Farm of Norwood, ON. Tymal Reign Guelph, ON residents Doug and Gregg McNair swept the three-year-old pacing filly divisions with The Joy Luck Club and Action Majesty, who clocked identical 1:51.1 miles. Fan favourite The Joy Luck Club romped to a three length victory over Soiree Seelster and Blameitonthenight, while Stonebridge Sundae and favourite Aint Three Ok finished in a dead-heat behind Action Majesty. "The Joy Luck Club raced real good. I was going to race her from off (the pace), because she hasn't been finishing on the big track, but there wasn't much speed and once the half flashed up in :56.2 I figured she'd be tough to beat," said driver Doug McNair. "Action Majesty raced good as well, especially for being off three weeks. I was happy the way she fought in the stretch; that was another big mile." Joy Luck Club Gregg McNair conditions The Joy Luck Club for his partners R A W Equine Inc. of Burlington and Mark Horner of St. Marys, ON. Saturday's win was the Camluck daughter's eleventh of the season, but her first in OSS action. Kenneth Sommer of Sheffield, OH bred and owns Royal Mattjesty daughter Action Majesty, who now has two sophomore Gold trophies to her credit. Action Majesty Ontario Sires Stakes action continues at Mohawk Racetrack on Monday, July 24 with two Gold Series divisions for the two-year-old pacing fillies. Post time is 7:30 pm and the fillies will compete in Races 2 and 3. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

JULY 21, 2017 - Pacing fillies were in the harness racing spotlight at Mohawk Racetrack on Friday evening with three Grassroots divisions for the sophomore lasses and five for their novice counterparts. Trainer Jack Darling harnessed two starters, both two-year-old pacing fillies, and the Cambridge, ON resident made two visits to the Mohawk winner's circle. Darling trainee Write Me A Song captured the second freshman skirmish, sailing home three and three-quarter lengths ahead of her peers in 1:55. Breezy finished second and So Bananas was third. The victory, engineered by Milton, ON resident Randy Waples, boosted Write Me A Song to the top of the two-year-old pacing filly standings, giving her a total of 75 points from one win and one second in the first two Grassroots events. "She raced good. She was a nice filly training down, always showed lots of talent," said Darling, who acquired Write Me A Song from last fall's Canadian Yearling Sale for $47,000. "She's coming along well." Write Me A Song The horseman's other winner was homebred Neon Moon, a Sportswriter daughter out of his former race mare Beach Of A Time. Like her stablemate, Neon Moon took command before the halfway marker and was never challenged, cruising under the wire two and three-quarter lengths ahead of Ashlees Sport and Voulez Hanover in 1:54.1. Friday's test was Neon Moon's first; she missed the July 11 Grassroots opener after breaks in her first two qualifiers required a third attempt. Moffat, ON resident Jody Jamieson was in the race bike for all three qualifiers and Friday's victory. "The first week (June 26) she jumped a shadow, and then the next week (June 30) it was just kind of an equipment problem, but she seems nice and solid now," said Darling of the filly's qualifying difficulties. "You just don't know until you see them race." Darling said the fillies trained together all winter - sharing both training miles and a tendency toward grabbing hold of the bit - with Write Me A Song having a slight edge on Neon Moon. "Write Me A Song was, she's just been more talented, she's bigger and taller, and a bigger gait, so she was one you would maybe get a little higher on," said the owner-trainer. "But this filly (Neon Moon), she's just like a machine out there, very efficient over the ground." Neon Moon Darling's fillies will continue to advance their education in the third freshman pacing filly Grassroots event at Grand River Raceway on August 14. The other two-year-old Grassroots divisions were captured by first-time Ontario Sires Stakes starters Lady Bubbles, Duchess Dolly and Dry Silk Flowers, who all used late sprints to claim their victories. In the first $19,150 division Lady Bubbles was victorious in 1:56 for driver James MacDonald of Guelph, ON, trainer Mark Steacy of Lansdowne, ON and Hudson Standardbred Stable Inc. of Hudson, QC, who also bred the daughter of Sportswriter. Favourite Shower Play was second and Hey Sweetie was third.. Lady Bubbles Shadow Play daughter Duchess Dolly captured the third division in 1:56.3 over Iveseenthefuture and favourite Campassion. Jonathan Drury of Guelph crafted the victory for trainer Jim Wellwood of Ancaster and owner Jeff Wellwood of Toronto, ON. Duchess Dolly Dry Silk Flowers sprinted home to a 1:55 victory over favourite Love Kills and Rendezvous Hanover. After finishing third in the first three freshman Grassroots divisions, Trevor Henry of Arthur, ON piloted the chestnut daughter of Vintage Master to the win for trainer Paul Reid and owner Robert Key of Leechburg, PA. Dry Silk Flowers In the three-year-old pacing filly divisions, Manhattan Play took sole control of top spot in the point standings with her third straight Grassroots victory. The Shadow Play daughter and driver Mike Saftic of Campbellville, ON controlled the tempo for the bulk of the mile and had another gear left for the stretch, pacing home to a one length victory in 1:53. Favourite Bid Writer was second and Snappy Dresser finished third. "She was first up the first two (Grassroots), and I thought that was going to happen tonight too, but I'm glad Jody (Jamieson with Bid Writer) let us go because that's a long stretch," said Cambridge resident Nicky Comegna, who conditions the filly for his father Bruno Comegna of Burlington, ON. "She's been real good." Manhattan Play made two starts at the Gold Series level during her 10-race two-year-old campaign, but the Comegna's opted to focus on the Grassroots this season when the filly developed allergies earlier in the year. Through 12 sophomore starts Manhattan Play now boasts a record of three wins, two seconds and one third for earnings of $39,860. Manhattan Play The other two $18,800 Grassroots divisions went to Shewearsthepants and Diamondtoothgertie. Favourite Shewearsthepants and driver Doug McNair of Guelph, ON cruised home three and one-quarter length winners in 1:53, besting Rose Run Samantha and Fading Shadow. The driver's father, Gregg McNair, also of Guelph, conditions the Big Jim daughter for owner-breeder Anatolia Farm LLC of New Holland, PA. Shewearsthepants First time Ontario Sires Stakes starter Diamondtoothgertie roared home in the last sophomore division to claim a three length victory over Style Snapshot and P L Kahluaa. The 1:52.4 clocking was a personal best for the Sportswriter daughter, who was driven to the win by Milton, ON resident Sylvain Filion and is owned by trainer Sylvain Grenier of Saint-Rene, QC. Diamondtoothgertie The three-year-old pacing fillies return to Grassroots action on August 5 at Hanover Raceway. On Saturday evening Mohawk Racetrack will showcase the top three-year-old pacers and trotters in nine Gold Series divisions worth a total of $779,200. The first race goes postward at 7:30 pm. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

CAMPBELLVILLE, July 21 - The finest Ontario sired harness racing three-year-olds will be on display for nine Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) Gold divisions on Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack. An action-packed 13-race card will offer fans and horseplayers the opportunity to see the best Ontario sired sophomores in each division strut their stuff. The three-year-old pacing colt division generally grabs the headlines and Saturday it'll lead the way with 25 colts and geldings split into three $66,400 divisions. Dr. Ian Moore trainee Classic Pro is the headliner in the division and returns to Mohawk fresh off a third-place finish in last week's Meadowlands Pace. The son of Shadow Play captured a Gold division back on Canada Day, which was his first start since finishing fourth in the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup. A winner of $222,045 this season, Classic Pro and driver Trevor Henry will leave from post six in the opening division (Race 2). The other two divisions are carded as Races 5 and 9. A group of 19 sophomore trotting colts and geldings have been split into a pair of divisions going for purses of $98,000 and $97,200. Try Try Again is undefeated in OSS action and five for six in his young career heading into Saturday's second division for trainer Dustin Jones. The son of Kadabra started his career this season with five consecutive victories, including scores in a Grassroot and Gold, before finishing second in his most recent outing (a Non-Winners of Four event). Try Try Again's pedigree supports his results this season, as his second dam is Spellbound Hanover, the dam of Trotting Triple Crown winner Marion Marauder. Chris Christoforou will steer the Jones' trainee from post-seven in Race 8. The first division is carded as Race 6. The sophomore pacing fillies will be on display later in the evening, as 15 of them have been split into two divisions ($96,400 and $95,600) carded as Races 11 and 12. Tony O'Sullivan trainee Soiree Seelster currently leads the OSS Standings with $71,900 banked over two previous Gold legs. The daughter of Big Jim captured a division on June 1 at Mohawk and most recently finished second in a leg at Grand River on June 26. Soiree Seelster has banked $213,782 in nine career starts (four wins). She'll start from post-five in the first division with Sylvain Filion in the sulky. The three-year-old filly trot division will feature 16 fillies split into a pair of $96,400 divisions carded as Race 1 and 3. With the top two horses (Magic Presto and Paradise Image) in the OSS Standings not competing Saturday, and the next two in line competing in the same division, the door is wide open for a filly to breakthrough. Sweet Of My Heart and On A Sunny Day are the only two fillies with Gold victories this season racing in Saturday's leg and both will compete in the first split. A daughter of Angus Hall, Sweet Of My Heart has won two of six starts this season after winning two of five and never missing the board as a rookie. The Paul Reid trainee most recently saw a two-race win streak snapped when she made a break in her last outing. Louis Philippe Roy will team up with Sweet Of My Heart to start from post-two. On A Sunny Day carries an impressive six for 10 record into Saturday's contest for trainer Luc Blais. The Muscle Mass filly has two wins and a second in four starts this season and most recently captured a Gold leg at Georgian on July 2. Sylvain Filion will steer the Blais trainee from post-six. The OSS action won't be the only fun going on Saturday evening. Fans on-track can sign up for "Drive With Us" for a chance to take part in sulky rides between races. The sign-up for "Drive With Us" is available at the Customer Service/Program desk and is available on a first come, first serve basis. Spots do fill up quickly, so fans are encouraged to inquire immediately upon arrival. There will also be a drawing Saturday evening for a Pepsi North America Cup poster autographed by all 10 drivers from this year's race. Ballots will be available at the Program desk and the drawing will take place after Race 6. Doors open Saturday at 5:30 p.m., with the Terrace Dining Room and Trackside Bar opening at 6:30 p.m. Live racing begins at 7:30 p.m. Saturday's racing program can be downloaded by clicking here. Mark McKelvie

JULY 21, 2017 - A total of $779,200 will be up for grabs at Mohawk Racetrack on Saturday night as the Campbellville oval showcases the best of the Ontario Sires Stakes sophomore crop. Harness racing pacers and trotters, colts and fillies will line up behind the Mohawk starting gate in nine Gold Series divisions. "All the best three-year-olds are there," said the program's leading driver Sylvain Filion. "I think fans will enjoy watching all the good three-year-olds in the same night. They should have one heck of a race card to watch." The three-year-old trotting fillies will kick things off at 7:30 pm in the first race and the absence of division heavyweight Magic Presto, currently competing stateside, gives the other fillies a chance to pad their point tally in the quest for a season ending Super Final berth. Filion will drive one filly in each of the $96,400 divisions, guiding July 7 Gold Leg winner On A Sunny Day from Post 6 in the first race and last year's division champion Winter Sweet Frost from Post 3 in the third. "I feel lucky to get the opportunity to drive them two fillies," said the Milton, ON resident, who is the regular pilot for On A Sunny Day and will make his debut in Winter Sweet Frost's race bike. "On A Sunny Day, she raced real big last time at Georgian (July 2); that was one heck of a trip. She fought off Trevor Henry's, Nifty Norman's, filly there (Magic Presto). That was a really, really super mile." Filion will also steer trotting colts Magic Night, Post 6 in Race 6, and R First Class, Post 6 in Race 8, pacing colts Yogi Bayama, Post 3 in Race 2, and Tymal Peacemaker, Post 8 in Race 9, and pacing fillies Soiree Seelster, Post 5 in Race 11, and Yaris Bayama, Post 2 in Race 12. The four-time winner of the Lampman Cup award as the top driver in the Ontario Sires Stakes, Filion noted that Tymal Peacemaker could be poised for a big effort in the third pacing colt division. The Stephane Larocque trainee heads into the event off a 1:51.2 victory in an overnight event at Mohawk on July 15. "Tymal Peacemaker really raced good his last start. His first Sires Stakes this year (July 1) I shut his air off, so he didn't race that good that night, but he bounced back pretty good, and he felt really good the other night," said Filion. "I know he drew the outside post (8), but I think if he races the way he did last time he should be really tough to beat in there." Looking at the nine Gold Series events, Mohawk announcer Ken Middleton sees a variety of interesting wagering propositions for fans looking for selections beyond the expected favourites. "Saturday's card should offer a number of value play possibilities in the Gold Series events. Especially with horses that are on a roll, but have yet to prove themselves at this elite level," said Middleton. "A prime example of a horse that fits the bill is Bills Fella (Post 2 in Race 5). He's a bit of a late bloomer who has started to come into his own in recent weeks for trainer Gregg McNair. "He'll hook up with two of last year's big name pacing colts in Sports Column and Arsenal Seelster, but it looks like he might be catching them at a good time," Middleton continued. "He's one I'd take a rip at if the price was 4-1 or higher." Saturday's contest marks the midway point in the sophomore Gold Series season, so all 74 hopefuls should be in top form as they battle for points toward a berth in their respective $225,000 Super Final. The top 10 point earners from each division will qualify for a spot in the Oct. 14 Super Finals at Mohawk. Post time for Saturday's talent-laden event at the Campbellville oval is 7:30 pm, with the three-year-olds starring in Races 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10 and 11. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing  

JULY 20, 2017 - Sixty-six freshman pacing colts invaded Mohawk Racetrack on Thursday evening and delivered impressive harness racing performances in two Ontario Sire Stakes Gold Series and five Grassroots divisions. Phantom Seelster opened the program with his second Grassroots victory, sprinting down the stretch to a 1:52.3 triumph. Pretty Handsome finished two lengths back in second and P H Hippie was two more lengths back in third. "Phantom was perfect tonight," said driver Rick Zeron of Oakville, ON, who sat fourth with the gelding through much of the mile after starting from Post 6. "He's getting better every start. He just waits for me to ask him to go; he's just a pleasure to drive." Zeron guided the roan son of Mach Three to the win for trainer Marcel Barrieau of Cambridge, ON and his partners Gestion Mastel Inc. of Longueuil, QC and Conrad Leber of Montreal, QC. A $74,000 acquisition from the Forest City Yearling Sale, Phantom Seelster has earned $22,825 through his first three starts. Phantom Seelster Next up were the Gold Series colts and Shadow Moon made the transition from Grassroots to Gold look easy, doing all the work on the front-end and then digging in down the stretch to hold off Western Passage and Sports Legend. The 1:53.4 clocking matched the effort Shadow Moon delivered in the two-year-old pacing colt Grassroots opener at Mohawk on July 10 and boosted his earnings to $57,775. "This colt's been a nice colt from Day 1, he actually was my favourite all winter long," said trainer Dr. Ian Moore from the winner's circle. "He ran into some problems in March so he got behind the rest of them for about a month, so I opted to start him in the Grassroots - in fact this was probably only his fourth time on a starting gate and fifth time in a bike - so I hummed and hawed about where we should start him tonight. Anyway, a bit of a slow last quarter, but he got it done." "We went a very fast third quarter (:26.4)," added driver Trevor Henry of Arthur, ON. "I think that's why he didn't pace home that fast, but he's a nice colt. He can leave the gate fast." Puslinch, ON resident Moore shares ownership of Shadow Moon with R G McGroup Ltd. of Bathurst, NB, Serge Savard of St-Bruno, QC and Gordon McComb of Fall River, NS. The son of Moore's former trainee Shadow Play was a $60,000 purchase at the Harrisburg Yearling Sale. Shadow Moon The other $97,200 Gold Series division was captured by Jimmy Freight, in his first start since being acquired by Adriano Sorella of Milton and moving from Iowa to Ontario. The son of Sportswriter tussled with Lucky Sport and Goth Hanover throughout the mile before prevailing over those two colts, also sons of Sportswriter, by a neck in 1:52.3. "I thought the colt was ultra-impressive considering the fact that he was purchased on Thursday (July 13), shipped from Iowa to New Jersey on Friday, trained Monday in New Jersey and shipped to Canada on Tuesday," said New Jersey-based trainer Tony Alagna. "He bounced off the trailer and got the job done tonight, with a huge step up from county fair racing to Gold action on a big track. "I knew the family, having owned the sister to Jimmy Freight (Frog Pond Princess), and I have driven horses previously on the Iowa tracks he was winning on, I know what kind of miles those were," Alagna added, referring to the colt's record of five wins in five starts on the Midwestern county fair circuit. "Huge congratulations to Adriano Sorella for stepping up and buying the horse." Jimmy Freight and driver Jonathan Drury will have an opportunity to cement their position as top contenders in the Ontario freshman pacing colt ranks in the third Gold Series event on August 19 at Mohawk. Jimmy Freight Owners Brad Gray of Dundas and Denise Guerriero of Toronto, ON made two visits to the Grassroots winner's circle on Thursday as Family Sports and Burning Midnight captured their respective divisions. Family Sports got a perfect pocket trip from driver Jody Jamieson and then powered out in the final quarter to claim a 1:53.3 victory, three and one-half lengths ahead of pacesetter Sprocket. Letjimmytakeover completed the top three. Cambridge, ON resident Dave Menary trains the son of Sportswriter for Gray and Guerriero. Family Sports Two races later Burning Midnight and driver Louis-Philippe Roy also used a late sprint to post a seven and three-quarter length victory in 1:53.2 and give Gray and Guerriero their second trophy. The son of Mach Three, who is trained by Corey Giles of Cambridge, ON, bested Lucky Michael and When You Dance. Burning Midnight The other two Grassroots trophies went home with Chocolate Swirl and Hudson Phil, who delivered identical 1:54.2 clockings. Chocolate Swirl controlled the pace from start to finish for driver Travis Cullen and hit the wire one and three-quarter lengths ahead of JM Jack Of Hearts and Barn One. Eric Adams trains the son of Mach Three for owner-breeder Millar Farms of Stouffville, ON. Chocolate Swirl Hudson Phil and driver James MacDonald powered up the outside to a one-half length win over Bo Mach and Dismissal Slip for owner-breeder Hudson Standardbred Stable Inc. of Hudson, QC. Lansdowne, ON resident Mark Steacy conditions the son of Shanghai Phil. Hudson Phil The colts will make their third Grassroots appearance on August 16 at Grand River Raceway. Ontario Sires Stakes excitement continues at Mohawk Racetrack on Friday night (July 21) with Grassroots action for the two-year-old and three-year-old pacing fillies. The two-year-olds kick things off in the first race at 7:30 pm and will also compete in Races 3, 5, 7, and 11, while the sophomores battle in Races 2, 6 and 9. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

JULY 18, 2017 - Mohawk Racetrack hosted the second Grassroots event of the season for the harness racing two-year-old trotting colts on Tuesday evening and both Ontario Sires Stakes trophies went home with first time winners. The first $18,800 division saw Jula Downton, a winner in the July 8 Grassroots season opener, sent off as the fans' top choice. As the starting gate pulled away from the field of eight, Smart Pick was out the fastest, reaching the quarter in :29.3. Delcrest Holiday, also a winner in the season opener, was on his heels, with Jula Downton third and Leaderofthepack fourth. Smart Pick handed the lead over to Delcrest Holiday heading for the :59.4 half and the fan's second choice rang up a 1:29.4 three-quarters. Jula Downton and Leaderofthepack started up the outside around the final turn, but as the colts entered the stretch the favourite skipped off stride, leaving Leaderofthepack with a clear view of the finish. The first-time starter found another gear and trotted under the wire one and one-quarter lengths ahead of a hard closing Stormont Ventnor and Delcrest Holiday in 1:59.4. "He exceeded the expectations tonight, we thought he was okay, but he definitely exceeded what we thought he could do tonight, anyway," said Ryan Holliday, who drove Leaderofthepack to the win for his father David and brother Ben Holliday, all of Mount Forest, ON. "He got a nice trip, and he knew what to do actually when he got the room, so that was nice to see." The homebred son of Angus Hall and Kats Crown was scheduled to make his debut in the July 8 season opener at Georgian Downs, but developed an abscess in his hoof before the race and had to be scratched. After a brief rest to recover from the abscess, Leaderofthepack prepped for Tuesday's test with a schooling mile at Mohawk on Friday, July 14. "He was quite a bit better today than he was even the other day, so he's going the right direction, that's the main thing," noted Holliday. "He was quite strong tonight at the wire, he's very green yet, obviously, but he was well within himself." Leaderofthepack In the second Grassroots division trainer-driver Dagfin Henriksen and North And South enjoyed a near identical trip to the one that propelled Leaderofthepack to the winner's circle. Also starting from Post 4, Henriksen and North And South dropped onto the rail in fourth, sitting behind fan favourite Say You Do, as second choice Radical Attempt rolled through fractions of :28.2 and :57.3. When Say You Do moved to the outside Henriksen sent North And South out in his wake and when Say You Do went off stride past the 1:29 three-quarters, North And South had an open lane to the finish. The fan's third choice powered home to a one and one-quarter length win over pocket-sitter Speed N Glide in 1:59.3. Chief Justice closed hard to be third. "It worked out perfect for him," said Henriksen. "I was ready to pull on the right line just when Doug (McNair with Say You Do) made a break so I kind of had to wait a little bit, but he picked up the lines as soon as I asked him. "It worked out perfect. Little bit of luck, you always need a little bit of luck with those baby races I find," added the Cambridge, ON resident. Henriksen shares ownership of North And South with Dr. Brett Anderson of Port Hope, ON and Kyle Anderson of Edmonton, AB. The partners acquired the son of Southwind Lustre and Queen Nora for $10,000 at last fall's Canadian Yearling Sale and Henriksen said the colt showed talent from his earliest lessons. "At the sale he had an outstanding video, that's kind of what sold us on him, his yearling video was just amazing, so that's kind of why we figured he was worth a shot," recalled Henriksen. "He's been excellent; he hasn't done a thing wrong. He's been so light on his feet all winter. I never pushed him. It was the end of April, beginning of May, before I started kind of pushing him. He did everything by himself all the way up to then." North And South qualified twice at Mohawk in June, finishing third on June 15 and second on June 24, so Henriksen and his partners decided to test the colt in the July 9 Gold Series event at Georgian Downs. The colt finished seventh in the Gold contest, won by Fordham Road in 1:57.1, and his connections decided a shift in strategy was in order, a decision that paid off with Tuesday's victory. "I think we did the right decision in going to the Grassroots with him," said Henriksen. "I'd rather have him as a really nice three-year-old than pushing him too hard this year." North And South North And South and Leaderofthepack will have an opportunity to double the size of their win columns when the two-year-old trotting colts return to Mohawk Racetrack on August 3 for their third Grassroots test. Next up on the Campbellville oval's action-packed Ontario Sires Stakes schedule are the two-year-old pacing colts, competing in Gold and Grassroots action on Thursday, July 20. The Grassroots colts will square off in Races 1, 5, 6, 8, and 10, while the Gold level colts battle in Races 3 and 9. Thursday's first race goes postward at 7:30 pm. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing        

JULY 13, 2017 - Heading into Thursday's three-year-old pacing colt Grassroots event at Mohawk Racetrack The Dark Shadow had delivered nine top five finishes in Ontario Sires Stakes harness racing action without ever visiting the winner's circle. That dubious streak came to an end in the third $18,800 Grassroots division Thursday as The Dark Shadow paced out of the fog in front of the pack and sailed home to a 1:53.1 victory. Tremendous Play finished four lengths back in second and Lyons William was another one and one-half lengths back in third. "He's been getting the worst trips and had the worst luck of any horse I've driven this year," said Moffat, ON resident Jody Jamieson, who has driven The Dark Shadow in the bulk of his 16 lifetime starts. "He finally got the trip to score easily." Starting from Post 5, Jamieson moved The Dark Shadow sharply away from the starting gate and landed in second behind Tremendous Play, who led the field through fractions of :26.3, :56.3 and 1:24.3. The colts disappeared into the thickening fog as they paced around the final turn, but it was The Dark Shadow who emerged with the lead in the stretch and sprinted home to the convincing victory. Jack Darling of Cambridge, ON owns and trains the son of Shadow Play and Bestofbothworlds, who boosted his career earnings to $78,997 with the win, his second lifetime. "He's got to be the best colt in the division, but he's had no chance to show that form until tonight," added Jamieson. "That should spring his confidence and start him winning regularly in the Grassroots." The Dark Shadow Jamieson piloted another Darling trainee, Southwind General to a third-place result in the first Grassroots division, finishing four lengths behind their co-favourites London Seelster and Louis-Philippe Roy. Thrownoutofbetter and driver Phil Hudon were second. Starting from Post 7, Roy hustled London Seelster away from the starting gate and reached the quarter pole on top in :27.2. London Seelster controlled the pace to the :57.4 half and then yielded to Oak Island, sitting behind that colt through the 1:26 three-quarters. In the stretch Roy asked London Seelster for another gear and the Camluck son delivered, sprinting off to a four length victory in a personal best 1:54.2. Richard Moreau of Puslinch, ON conditions London Seelster for Gaston Bibeau and numbered company 9099 3833 Quebec Inc. of Sorel-Tracy, QC and Eric Bibeau of Ste-Victoire-de-Sorel, QC and the trainer said the partners were delighted with the victory. "They are the best owners; this was their first Grassroots win. I'm happy for us, and I love Louis-Philippe like he is my own son," quipped Moreau, adding that he was not 100 per cent confident London Seelster would emerge victorious from his first Grassroots start of the season. Through four sophomore outings the gelding now boasts a record of three wins and earnings of $16,800. London Seelster The other trophy also went home with a first-time Grassroots winner. Dream Of Luck and driver Doug McNair took control of the second division before the halfway marker and proceeded to lead the field to the wire, posting a three-quarter length victory over Kazimoto and Mach Deja Vu in 1:53.4. "He raced good tonight," said McNair. "He has a lot of speed, but you have to make him do it. I think he would finish better off a helmet." It was the third win of the season, and the first Grassroots victory, for Dream Of Luck, who is owned by trainer Jeff Gillis of Everett, ON, Mac Nichol of Burlington, ON and Gerald Stay of Buffalo, NY. The win boosted the Camluck son's lifetime earnings to $46,709. Dream Of Luck The three-year-old pacing colts will make their fourth Grassroots start at Grand River Raceway on Monday, Aug. 7, part of the Elora oval's signature Industry Day event. Ontario Sires Stakes action is back at Mohawk Racetrack on Tuesday, July 18 when the two-year-old trotting colts will go postward at 7:30 pm in their second Grassroots test. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

JULY 10, 2017 - Phantom Seelster caught the eye of many yearling shoppers at last fall's harness racing Forest City Sale, and on Monday night at Mohawk Racetrack the roan pacing colt proved he has talent to go along with his looks. Starting from Post 1 Phantom Seelster sat briefly in third, but soon after the :27.3 quarter driver Rick Zeron sent the fan favourite after the lead and Phantom Seelster never looked back, rolling through fractions of :56.1 and 1:25.1 on his way to a four and one-half length victory in 1:53.1. Avalon Hanover finished second and Bo Mach was third. "He's a pretty serious colt, I'll tell you," said Zeron. "Boy, he impressed the living jeezus out of me tonight. "Jody (Jamieson with Avalon Hanover) chased me a little bit coming out of the top turn and I just spoke to him and hit the wheel disk a couple of times and he was gone," the Oakville, ON resident continued. "He enjoys his work immensely and every time I spoke to him he responded to a T, he responded right to what I needed him to do, and he took care of himself the rest of the race." Zeron drove Phantom Seelster to his first lifetime win for trainer Marcel Barrieau of Cambridge, ON and his partners Gestion Mastel Inc. of Longueuil, QC and Conrad Leber of Montreal, QC. The reinsman also piloted the son of Mach Three and Pantecostal in his July 4 debut at Mohawk Racetrack, where they finished a fast closing second and Zeron suggested that Barrieau had a Gold level competitor on his hands. "I said, Marcel I think you've got a Gold colt here, and he says, well I'm just going to take my time with him," Zeron recalled. "Marcel's a pretty sharp veteran trainer, he knows what's right and what's wrong, and he did the right thing, he put him in the Grassroots instead of going in the Gold." Barrieau and his partners, who purchased Phantom Seelster for $74,000 from the Forest City Yearling Sale last fall, will now have to decide whether to continue in the Grassroots or make the move up to the Gold Series for leg two. The second Grassroots and Gold Series events will both go postward at Mohawk on July 20. Phantom Seelster The second $19,150 Grassroots division went to Stock and driver Sylvain Filion of Milton, ON, who hit the wire two and one-quarter lengths ahead of favourite Howmac Dancer and Letjimmytakeover in 1:55. Dany Fontaine trains Stock, a son of Sportswriter and Whycantiforgetyou, for breeder Sotirios Anastasopoulos of Sainte-Therese, QC and Ecurie Gaetan Bono Inc. of Montreal, QC. Stock Master Of Love made a late charge in the third division to earn a Grassroots trophy for trainer Richard "Nifty" Norman and owner-breeder Alfred Ross of South Dartmouth, MA. Arthur, ON resident Trevor Henry crafted the come-from-behind victory, which saw the Vintage Master son reel in pacesetter Wind Blast and pocket-sitter P H Hippie for a one-half length victory in 1:55.3. Master Of Love Bob McClure gave up a full slate of drives at Grand River Raceway to make one appearance in the race bike at Mohawk Racetrack on Monday evening and fans took notice, sending his mount, Northern Rebel, off as the top choice in the fourth division. The favourites did not disappoint, rolling to a two length victory in 1:56. Phil Dorleans finished a closing second and Lucky Michael was two more lengths back in third. It was the second straight win for Northern Rebel and Elora, ON resident McClure, who also posted a 1:56.3 victory at Grand River on July 3. "He seems to get better every week. He has one heck of a brush, I don't know how far he can carry his speed yet, but I guess throughout the course of the year we'll find out," said McClure, who has made five appearances in the colt's race bike, starting with a schooling mile in early June. "Rene's done a really great job getting him ready and he's just like an aged horse to drive, he's really sweet. So as long as he stays sound and healthy he should have a really good year." Rene Bourassa of Fergus, ON trains Northern Rebel and shares ownership of the colt with Roland Trudel of Becancour, QC and Michel Damphousse of Louiseville, QC. The partners offered up $22,000 for the son of Sportswriter and $1 million winner Southwind Madonna at last fall's Canadian Yearling Sale and have recouped $12,750 through the colt's first three starts. Northern Rebel The final Grassroots trophy went home with Shadow Moon, who rang up fractions of :27.3, :57.2 and 1:25.4 on his way to a 1:53.4 victory. Trevor Henry picked up his second Ontario Sires Stakes win of the evening with the fan favourite, who finished three lengths ahead of JM Jack Of Hearts. Blue Moose was three more lengths back in third. Dr. Ian Moore of Puslinch, ON trains Shadow Moon for his partners R G McGroup of Bathurst, NB, Serge Savard of St-Bruno, QC and Gordon McComb of Fall River, NS. The group purchased the son of Shadow Play and Lofty Yankee for $60,000 US at the 2016 Harrisburg Yearling Sale. Shadow Moon Ontario Sires Stakes excitement continues at Mohawk Racetrack on Thursday, July 13 with the third Grassroots event for the three-year-old pacing colts. The first race gets under way at 7:30 pm and the pacing colts will compete in Races 3, 6, and 8. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

JULY 7, 2017 - Sons of Ontario sire Sportswriter put on a show at Mohawk Racetrack on Friday evening in the first Ontario Sires Stakes Gold Series event for harness racing two-year-old pacing colts and geldings. A total of 10 Sportswriter offspring went postward in two $97,200 Gold Series divisions and it was Dancin Doug who emerged from the first battle with a Gold trophy. Starting from Post 4 the colt, in rein to Doug McNair, landed third and watched from a respectful distance as fan favourite Taste Of History and second choice Simple Kinda Man rocketed out to a :25.3 opening quarter, a :53.4 half and a 1:22.3 three-quarters. Rolling off the last turn McNair tipped Dancin Doug around the exhausted leaders and the fans' third choice paced down the stretch to a one-length win in 1:52.2. Western Passage and Lucky Sport, also sons of Sportswriter, closed well to finish second and third. "I actually thought I had him up too close because the speed was real hot," said McNair. "But he kept up and he did everything I needed him to do." McNair crafted Dancin Doug's first lifetime win for trainer Ron Adams of LaSalle and owners David Kryway of Amherstburg and numbered company 1362313 Ontario Ltd. of Windsor, ON. The partners acquired the half-brother to $1.5 million winner Dancin Yankee at the 2016 Lexington-Selected Yearling Sale for $95,000 and have recouped $50,280 through the youngster's first two starts. Thursday's outing was the fourth time McNair has sat in a race bike behind Dancin Doug and the Guelph, ON resident has been slightly more impressed with the colt after each outing. "I schooled him about a week before he qualified. They told me to go in 2:05 and I went in 2:00, but he just did it so handy," McNair recalled. "And then - I knew he had a little go to him, I didn't know how much go he had - and then after the first qualifier (June 10) obviously, last quarter in :26 flat, you know that's pretty good speed. A lot of horses can go in :27 and a piece or :28 last quarter, but :26 flat in the first start is pretty impressive. "He's a big horse, he's nice gaited and he's smart. I mean it's still early, but he's doing everything right." Dancin Doug Four races later the second group of novice pacers lined up behind the Mohawk Racetrack starting gate and once again it was Sportswriter sons crossing under the wire first. Fan favourite Goth Hanover took control early and led a parade of colts through a :27 quarter, :55.3 half and 1:23.4 three-quarters. Goth Hanover was being shadowed by Atomic Seelster and Sports Legend and as the leader squared up in the stretch both colts were preparing their charge. Laying down a :27.4 final quarter, it was Sports Legend who reeled in Goth Hanover, scoring a one-half length victory in 1:52.2. Atomic Seelster, a son of Shadow Play, finished third. Like Dancin Doug, Sports Legend prepped for Thursday's Gold test with a two-year-old event at Mohawk on June 30, finishing second, but Mohawk fans overlooked the gelding, sending him off as their seventh choice. Even trainer Richard Moreau admitted that he was a bit surprised by the pacer's victorious effort. "They deal with the babies all winter and they had good expectations for this horse," said the Puslinch, ON resident, who conditions Sports Legend for Gestion J Y Blais Inc. of Montreal, QC and welcomed the gelding to his barn just before his June 24 qualifier at Mohawk. "I didn't really believe until tonight." Milton, ON resident Sylvain Filion piloted Sports Legend to the win and noted that the gelding was significantly improved over his maiden outing. "Last week he raced pretty good, but he got bumpy late because he lost his momentum, if he doesn't do that last week he's way closer to the leader you know," explained Filion from the winner's circle. "But tonight he was pacing way better and he raced big." The first foal from $258,417 winner Island Terror, Sports Legend was a $50,000 purchase from the 2016 Harrisburg Yearling Sale and has earned $52,100 in his first two starts. Sports Legend The two-year-old pacing colts will return to Mohawk Racetrack for their second Gold Series event on July 20. In the meantime the Campbellville oval plays host to the first Grassroots event for the two-year-old pacing colts on Monday, July 10. The freshman pacers will kick things off in Monday's first race, post time 7:30 pm, and will also be featured in Races 3, 6, 7, and 9. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

JULY 6, 2017 - Mohawk Racetrack hosted the first two-year-old event of the Ontario Sires Stakes season on Thursday, July 6 and 32 freshman trotting fillies invaded the Campbellville harness racing oval for two Grassroots and two Gold Series divisions. Local filly Kadabra Queen kicked off the trotting fillies Gold Series season with a 1:59 victory over fan favourite Illusioneesta and Zorgwijk Sophia. Starting from Post 3, Kadabra Queen landed behind favourite Illusioneesta, watching a :29.3 quarter from second and a 1:00.3 from third, and then followed that filly up the outside heading for the 1:30.3 three-quarters. Coming off the final turn driver Scott Coulter asked Kadabra Queen for another gear and the daughter of Kadabra and Queen Street powered past Illusioneesta to a one length victory. Brantford resident Coulter piloted the filly to the win for trainer Chad Milner of Campbellville, co-owner and breeder Harness Horsepower Inc. of Campbellville and co-owner Frank Monte of Markham, ON. It was the second time Coulter had driven Kadabra Queen and he was even more impressed than he had been in her June 27 debut at Georgian Downs, where she finished a closing third. "They brought her there (Georgian Downs) just to give her the start and she was so well mannered and she finished in hand there, and he (Milner) said, you know what, she's kind of surprising me that she's got as much trot late as she does and I said, she felt fantastic. So he said, I'm going to try her in the Gold, and I said, well why not," said Coulter with a laugh. "And then here we are." Through Kadabra Queen's first two starts Coulter has been most impressed with her manners and her intelligence, two qualities that are essential for young trotters. "Tonight, the same thing, she did what she had to do; she showed up, she put her head down, and she's so very smart and that makes her really, really useful," said the reinsman. "She's a pleasure to drive." Kadabra Queen The other $96,400 Gold Series division went to Sorceress Seelster, who posted the fastest mile of the four freshman trotting filly events. The daughter of Holiday Road and Self Desire delivered an impressive effort, sprinting away from Post 4 to a :27.4 opening quarter, then backing things off en route to a :59.4 half, sitting in the pocket behind Gotta Pay To Play to a 1:29.4 three-quarters and then carving through a narrow opening to reel in her peers and post a two length victory in 1:58.4. Miss Mimi finished second and Shamrock Shaker was third. Trevor Henry of Arthur piloted the fan favourite to the win for owner-trainer Jack Wray of London and his partner Thomas Wray of Schomberg, ON, who offered up $13,000 for the filly at last fall's Forest City Yearling Sale. Henry, one of the top drivers at Mohawk and a two-time winner of the Lampman Cup as the leading reinsman on the Ontario Sires Stakes circuit, is expecting a strong season from Sorceress Seelster. "She was real hot off the gate tonight, she come out of there pretty fast. Once she made front, then she was fine," Henry said from the winner's circle. "I didn't really want to cut it with her because she could get hot, you know, so when Wayne (Henry and Gotta Pay To Play) came I was happy just to cover her up for a bit because I didn't want to rush her too much. "Once she got room she was gone," Henry continued. "She's a nice filly; she's going to be all right." Sorceress Seelster and her Gold Series peers will make their second start back at Mohawk on July 25. Sorceress Seelster Henry also scored a Grassroots win, going gate-to-wire with Christmas Candy in the second $18,450 division. The daughter of Angus Hall and Solange Kosmos hit the wire three-quarters of a length ahead of Warrawee Trip and favourite Ladys Intuition in 2:02.1. Ian Downey of St. George-Brant, ON conditions Christmas Candy for owner-breeder S S G Stables of North Boston, NY. Christmas Candy The first two-year-old trophy of the 2017 season went to P L Layla, who took control of the first Grassroots division before the half-way marker and never looked back, cruising home a two and one-half length winner in 1:59.4. Dalliance Seelster finished second and fan favourite Kant Afford It was third. Milton resident Randy Waples crafted the winning trip for trainer Matthew Dupuis of Rockwood and owner-breeders Prince Lee Acres of Uxbridge, ON. P L Layla The Grassroots fillies will make their second start on July 16 at Georgian Downs. Two-year-old action continues at Mohawk Racetrack on Friday, July 7 with two $97,200 Gold Series divisions for the pacing colts. The colts will make their Ontario Sires Stakes debuts in Races 4 and 8. Post time for Friday's program is 7:30 pm. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

JULY 1, 2017 - Harness racing trainer Dr. Ian Moore has been clinging to the roller coaster that is Classic Pro for a month and, in spite of Saturday's Ontario Sire Stakes Gold Series win at Mohawk Racetrack, the ride is showing no signs of levelling off. Starting from Post 7 in the last of three Gold divisions on the Campbellville oval's Canada Day program, Classic Pro swept to the front heading by the :55.2 half. The colt hit the three-quarters in 1:24, but seemed to labour through a :29.1 final quarter, hanging on to post a one length 1:53.1 win over fast-closing Red John and Makasi. "The track is off, but I don't know," said Moore of the colt's relatively flat effort. "Trevor (Henry) said he was pretty well all out there, which is odd." Mohawk fans sent Classic Pro off as their top choice Saturday after watching him deliver a pair of impressive performances in the Pepsi North America Cup. Classic Pro and Henry finished second in their June 10 elimination, hitting the wire in 1:50, and fourth in the June 17 final, pacing in 1:49.4. Following the final Moore opted to give the son of Shadow Play a week in the paddock and he speculated that the time off may have contributed to the colt's slower clocking on Saturday. "That week off might not have been good to him. He seems to love his track work, so maybe I shouldn't have done that," said Puslinch, ON resident Moore. "I just turned him out completely from Saturday to Saturday. I do that a lot with mine. They go tough races; it's hard to go week-after-week with them, that's for sure." Moore's decision to give Classic Pro a break stemmed from the colt's eligibility to The Meadowlands Pace, which kicks off with eliminations on July 8 followed by the final on July 15. Saturday's effort gave the trainer pause, but with horses required to arrive at an approved training facility within a 150 mile radius of The Meadowlands by 8 pm on Monday, July 3, he and partners Ron and Gail McLellan, principals in R G McGroup Ltd. of Bathurst, NB, and Serge Savard of St.-Bruno, QC, do not have the luxury of leisurely decision-making. As a result, unless the colt wakes up Sunday morning feeling under the weather, he will likely be heading south for another test against North America's top pacers. "Unless anything changes, I think that's what we're going to do. We'll just take that as a training mile I guess," said Moore. "He was good all week, but I don't know, just a little off that was all." Also worrying Moore as his prized pupil gets ready to leave home is the absence of O'Brien Award winning caretaker Teesha Symes, who flew to Pennsylvania last week when her father Chuck suffered a ruptured appendix while transporting a load of horses to the Maritimes. "He had to have emergency surgery down there, so she flew down there to truck the horses to Nova Scotia for him," explained Moore. "I kind of need somebody with him that knows him. I mean there's certain days you can't even catch him in the stall if he decides not to, that's the way he is. It'll all work out I'm sure." After being a model student through his freshman campaign - which saw Classic Pro earn $121,154 from six thirds in 11 starts - the pacer has grown trickier to handle as his sophomore season progresses. The quirks started around the barn, but they showed up on the racetrack in the June 3 Somebeachsomewhere at Mohawk when Classic Pro made a break and caused Moore to briefly reconsider his decision to race the colt without hopples. "I trained him down free-legged and we thought, well we'll try him one week to the next and see what happens," recalled the horseman. "He's gotten a lot stronger on the bit this year than he was last year, which is why he made the break that night, he was hitting the stirrups of the bike and hitting the wheel and it just drove him crazy I guess, but we bought a new bike for him. I borrowed one from Gregg McNair for the first couple of starts until we got one of our own. "And we have earplugs in him, which I think has made a huge difference in him, he's a lot calmer behind the gate," Moore continued. "He can obviously go all right free-legged, but I don't know, it's been a stressful few weeks with this guy for sure." Classic Pro Following his trip to The Meadowlands, Classic Pro will be back at Mohawk Racetrack on July 22 for the third Gold Series test on the three-year-old pacing colt calendar. He will be joined by the other two winners from Saturday's leg, C L Sportaction and Mc Mach. C L Sportaction floated away from Post 3 in the first $66,400 division, landing in fifth as Streakavana sprinted out to a :26.3 opening quarter. Heading for the :55 half, driver Jonathan Lachance sent C L Sportaction up the outside and the colt reached the front end before the 1:23.1 three-quarters. Under pressure from a closing Fireball in the stretch C L Sportaction dug in and fought off the challenge, hitting the wire one-half length on top in a personal best 1:52.4. Osborne Seelster completed the top three. Saturday's appearance was C L Sportaction's first in the Ontario Sires Stakes program, and marked Lachance's first win on the Woodbine Entertainment Group circuit. Mario Lachance conditions the Sportswriter colt for owner-breeder Ecuries C. Leblanc Inc. of Saint-Eustache, QC. C L Sportaction Mc Mach scored the quickest win of the three divisions, stopping the Mohawk teletimer at 1:51.3. The son of Mach Three and driver Paul MacDonell got away sixth from Post 2 and avoided an early battle on the front end that ended up with three horses going off stride. Moving toward the half MacDonell sent Mc Mach up the outside and the colt was on cruise control for the remainder of the mile, crossing the wire one and three-quarter lengths ahead of Arsenal Seelster and Saulsbrook Lanny in a personal best 1:51.2. Hall of Fame horseman Bob McIntosh of Windsor, ON trains Mc Mach for his partners Al McIntosh Holdings Inc. of Leamington, ON and Randy Liepa of Livonia, MI. A three-time Grassroots winner at two, Mc Mach sits atop the three-year-old pacing colt point standings heading into the third Gold event on July 19. Mc Mach Ontario Sires Stakes excitement returns to Mohawk Racetrack on Thursday, July 6 with the debut of the two-year-old trotting fillies in both Gold and Grassroots action. Post time for Thursday's program is 7:30 pm. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

JUNE 30, 2017 - Fans heading to Dresden Raceway, Hiawatha Horse Park and Mohawk Racetrack on Saturday will be treated to a variety of Canada Day festivities, including Ontario Sires Stakes harness racing action. Dresden Raceway opens the Ontario Sires Stakes Canada Day celebration at 1:30 pm on Saturday with four Grassroots divisions for the three-year-old trotting fillies. Trainer Mike Carther will send out Style Spotlight in the second $18,450 Grassroots division and the Dresden resident is hoping the filly delivers a solid effort in front of the hometown crowd. "She's, knock on wood, never made a break in her life," noted Carther. "And with these tight turns, some of the other ones might be bigger, it might pay off." St. Marys resident Mike Horner will steer Style Spotlight for owners Malcolm and Robert McPhail of Dover Centre, ON, lining up at Post 3 with the daughter of Windsong Espoir. "It's costing nothing for gas," said Carther with a chuckle. "We're not hoping for a whole lot, just having fun on Canada Day and hoping for the best." The Grassroots winners will receive their hardware from Lambton-Kent-Middlesex MPP Monte McNaughton, who will join Dresden Raceway fans for the Canada Day celebrations, which include the traditional eight-foot long Canada Day cake and a variety of prizes and giveaways, among them Ontario Sires Stakes ball caps and Ontario Racing flip-flops. Dresden Raceway's program gets under way at 1:30 pm and the three-year-old trotting fillies will show off their skills in Races 2, 5, 8 and 9. At 6:30 pm Hiawatha Horse Park will continue the Canada Day fun, showcasing the three-year-old trotting colts in a trio of $19,150 Grassroots divisions, slated as Races 2, 4 and 8. Among the hopefuls in the first division is Rose Run Speedster, who competes for trainer Rene Allard of Matamoras, PA and the Rose Run Speedster Stable of Guelph, ON. Rose Run Speedster was a two-time Gold Series winner at two and comes into Saturday's test off a win in the Grassroots season opener at Mohawk Racetrack on June 6. "I think we all just assumed he'd be a Gold horse forever and the fact that he has to go in the Grassroots isn't a bad thing. Hopefully he uses it as a stepping stone to get back to where we thought he belonged, but again, that will be up to him. And, having said that, he certainly doesn't owe us anything," said Anthony MacDonald, who purchased the colt as a yearling and set up the Rose Run Speedster Stable through his fractional ownership endeavour, "Rose Run Speedster put on the map last year, at least helped to, and for that we'll be forever grateful," MacDonald continued. "He's played a huge role in the start of what we've built." Dundas, ON resident Michael Whelan will steer Rose Run Speedster from Post 7 in the first division, and the Windsong Espoir colt's connections will be hoping to receive their second Grassroots trophy from Sarnia-Lambton MPP Bob Bailey, who be on hand for the Canada Day celebrations. Hiawatha Horse Park fans will also be treated to Canada Day cupcakes and giveaways including Ontario Sires Stakes ball caps and Ontario Racing flip-flips, along with $1 programs and pop and $2 jumbo hot dogs. Mohawk Racetrack's Canada Day celebrations start at 7:10 pm with the singing of 'O Canada' by Danielle Falls, followed by a commemorative mile by Mohawk's parade marshal Joanne Colville and Wroxeter, ON resident Jim McKague and his 13-year-old Ontario Sired Standardbred mare, A Promise Made. A Promise Made will be hitched to a circa 1885 high wheeled sulky and during the mile fans will enjoy a video commemorating 250 years of horse racing in Canada. The long tradition of horse racing across the country will also be commemorated by the Preferred class horses in the third race, which has been designated the 250th Anniversary of Horse Racing Pace. Harness racing's future will be celebrated in Races 2, 6 and 8 when Ontario's top three-year-old pacing colts square off for the second Gold Series battle of their season. In addition to the on-track action fans will enjoy a Canada Day cake upon arrival, and following Race 2, the first Ontario Sires Stakes division, special red velvet Canada Day cupcakes will be available by the bottom of the main escalators. First race post time for Mohawk Racetrack's Canada Day card is 7:30 pm. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 29 - A single ticket was able to connect on Thursday night's harness racing Jackpot Hi-5 at Mohawk Racetrack for a payout of $43,174.75 (USD). It is rare to see just a single winning Jackpot Hi-5 ticket when the favourite wins, but that's exactly what happened in Thursday's finale. Dorabella, the 6/5 favourite, was an easy-winner in the $10,000 event for pacing fillies and mares. The top-five was then completed by a trio of longshots and the second-choice. Just one ticket correctly had the combination of 6-5-8-7-3 to score a $43,174.75 (USD) payday. Here are the top-five finishers from Thursday's Jackpot Hi-5 race. 1st: #6 Dorabella (Trevor Henry) - 6/5 2nd: #5 Brittle (Mike Saftic) - 45/1 3rd: #8 D G Nickabocker (Randy Waples) - 70/1 4th: #7 Sparkle (Jody Jamieson) - 11/1 5th: #3 Mach Majorette (Travis Cullen) - 7/2 A total of $14,279 was wagered into the Jackpot Hi-5 pool, which had a carryover of $44,421 heading into Thursday's card. The winning ticket was a straight $0.20 wager 6-5-8-7-3. The horseplayer made the winning wager with TwinSpires through the Portland, Oregon hub. The Jackpot Hi-5 will now start from scratch on Friday evening's card. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie - WEG Communications

JUNE 27, 2017 - Harness racing driver Louis-Philippe Roy piloted two Ontario Sires Stakes winners at Mohawk Racetrack on Tuesday evening during a sophomore trotting colt contest that saw all three winners collect their first-ever Gold Series trophy. Roy's first victory came in the second $67,200 Gold division with LMC Mass Gem, who survived a tough trip to secure his second lifetime and first Ontario Sires Stakes victory. Starting from Post 9, LMC Mass Gem never saw the rail, touring the Mohawk oval alongside pacesetter and fan favourite R First Class through fractions of :27.1, :55.2 and 1:24.3. In the stretch LMC Mass Gem managed to trot away from a tired R First Class to a two and one-half length victory in a personal best 1:55.1. Dream Massive finished third. "I probably gave him the worst trip you can have and he kept going on," said Roy, with a rueful chuckle, from the winner's circle. "He (does) not have a real lot of speed, but he can carry on that speed for a while. "In the stretch I thought in my mind I was probably going to beat Sylvain (Filion with R First Class), because I seen his horse was a little bit more tired than mine, and I knew mine can carry his speed, like I said, for long," added the Mont-Joli, QC native. "But I thought that some were going to come too, but I didn't hear them until late stretch, so I was happy with the win." Roy crafted the victory for trainer Nick Gallucci of Brantford and owner Loredana Cirillo of Kleinberg, ON. A Grassroots competitor during his two-year-old season, LMC Mass Gem finished third in the sophomore Gold Series season opener at Flamboro Downs on May 21, which puts the son of Muscle Mass in a three-way tie atop the leaderboard with 62 points. LMC Mass Gem Roy, who currently leads all drivers in both the Ontario Sires Stakes and Mohawk Racetrack standings, scored his second win in the last Gold Series division, guiding Magic Night to an identical 1:55.1 clocking from Post 9. The Kadabra colt led from start to finish, posting fractions of :27.2, :57.2 and 1:26.3 on his way to a three and one-half length triumph over Scene A Magician and Northern Major. "He's got so much talent, I think if he change his manners he might be probably the best one, going a little bit faster than what he showed tonight," said Roy of Magic Night, adding that the gelding can be a handful on the racetrack. While Mohawk fans may have been surprised with Magic Night's victory - he went off as their fourth choice - trainer Susanne Kerwood had been expecting a strong outing from the young trotter. "He didn't surprise me. I told a few people that I think he can win tonight, actually," said Kerwood. "When he had the ten-hole a couple weeks ago (June 5) here at Mohawk he went right to the top. He just got beat at the wire in 1:55, which I thought was pretty impressive. That's when he really started to impress me." Kerwood conditions Magic Night for fellow Rockwood, ON resident Tommy Andersson, who prepped the gelding for his sophomore season in Florida. Winless in seven starts, at both the Grassroots and Gold Series levels, and plagued by miscues as a two-year-old, Magic Night seems to have found his groove this season. He finished fourth in the Gold Series opener and currently has sole ownership of fourth spot in the standings with 58 points. Although he was a modest $17,000 yearling purchase for Andersson at the 2015 Harrisburg Yearling Sale, Magic Night has success in his DNA. His mother Bedtime Songs is a half-sister to $1.7 million winner Pampered Princess and $824,457 Ontario Sired star Was It A Dream. "He's a nice big horse, big strong horse, and he's a beautiful animal, just a beautiful animal," added Kerwood, noting that her entire team has contributed to the gelding's current success. "I'm just fortunate to have him in training." Magic Night The other Gold Series trophy went home with Try Try Again, who extended his win streak to five for driver Chris Christoforou Jr. of Campbellville, ON, trainer Dustin Jones of Waterdown, ON and his partners Ecuries Daniel Plouffe Inc. of Bromont, QC, Noblock Racing Stable of Collingwood, ON and Andrea Lea Racing Stables Inc. of Lakefield Gore, QC. The colt was also a Grassroots winner at Mohawk on June 6. Starting from Post 4 Christoforou and Try Try Again were sitting fourth at the :27.2 quarter rung up by On First and heading for the :56.4 half they looked to be in perfect position, following favourite Mass Production up the outside. Unfortunately, for both fans and Try Try Again, the colt was left without a windbreak when Mass Production went off stride. In spite of that set back, Try Try Again was alongside On First by the 1:25.4 three-quarters and the Kadabra son held off Parkhill Nonstop by a length to record the 1:55.3 victory. On First settled for third. "He got a little sleepy there," said Jones from the winner's circle. "Chris thought he was going to draw away and he got a little sleepy at the wire, but he won by a length so that was good. "We've got him covered pretty good, his ears are blocked and that, so I think it's time to put a set of pull-out ear plugs on him," added the trainer. Try Try Again will be looking to make it six straight when the three-year-old trotting colts and geldings return to Mohawk Racetrack for their third Gold Series event on Saturday, July 22. Next up on the Campbellville oval's Ontario Sires Stakes schedule are the three-year-old pacing colts, who will compete in their second Gold event on Mohawk's Canada Day program this Saturday, July 1 at 7:30 pm. The colts are slated to battle in Races 2, 6 and 8. Try Try Again OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: Ontario Racing

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