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Will Take Charge delivered a commanding performance in the Ontario Sire Stakes Gold Series season opener for harness racing three-year-old trotting colts at Mohawk Racetrack on Monday evening, posting the fastest mile of three $70,000 divisions. Starting from Post 1, Will Take Charge left the gate smartly for driver Paul MacDonell. Heading for the :27 quarter the pair allowed Smoke Monkey a brief moment on the lead, but quickly circled back to the front and led the field of seven through fractions of :56.1 and 1:25.1. Muscle Hustle mounted a third-quarter challenge, but when Guelph, ON resident MacDonell asked Will Take Charge for another gear the gelding pulled away to a two and one-half length victory in a personal best 1:53. Muscle Hustle settled for second, with Dia Monde third and fan favourite Tony Soprano fourth. “He had a bit of second-itis last year, but he may have made the next step,” said trainer John Bax after the gelding’s third victory of 2016. “He kind of knows what racing’s about now, he’s all business.” As a two-year-old Will Take Charge captured one Gold trophy, finished second in three Gold Legs and the season ending Super Final, and was third in his other Gold Series start. The Kadabra son earned $196,990 for Campbellville, ON resident Bax and his partners Don Allensen of Wyoming, ON, John Hayes of Sharon, ON and Gordon Wright of Charlotte, MI. “I’m dreaming this guy might be one you might want to keep to play with as he gets older, because he’s pretty healthy and he’s not hard on himself,” added Bax, who conditioned trotter Goodtimes through an 11-year career that saw him earn $2.2 million and nomination to the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame. “I’ve always got Goodtimes for the measuring stick; it’s a pretty good measuring stick, so we’ll see at the end of the year how that works. “We know there’s lots of bumps in the road, but it’s a good start.” Will Take Charge Bee In Charge also got off to a good start, opening his sophomore Ontario Sires Stakes season with a 1:54.3 personal best in the first division. In rein to Chris Christoforou Jr. of Campbellville, Bee In Charge left strongly from Post 3 and then tucked in behind pacesetter Warrawee Roo through fractions of :28, :57.2 and 1:26.2. When the leader went off stride in the stretch Bee In Charge and Christoforou took full advantage, cruising to a three length victory. Dunvegan Don closed from the back to be second, with Matza Man rounding out the top three. The regally bred Bee In Charge, a Manofmanymissions half-brother to the $3.9 million winning Bee A Magician, is trained by Per Henriksen for owners Melvin Hartman of Ottawa, ON and David McDuffee of Delray Beach, FL. The gelding was a $130,000 purchase from the 2014 Lexington-Selected Yearling Sale by Hartman and McDuffee, who also share ownership of Bee A Magician. Raced just twice at two, Bee In Charge now boasts a record of three wins, one second and one third in six sophomore starts and boosted his earnings to $56,790 with Monday’s victory. Bee In Charge Zagster captured the other Gold Series trophy up for grabs at Mohawk Racetrack on Monday. After getting away last from Post 7, driver Trevor Henry sent the colt up the outside, getting a mid-race wind break from Gonna Fly before powering down the stretch to a 1:55.2 victory. The fan favourites held off a charging Dewy Dont Cheat to secure the three-quarter length win, with Nofear Blue Chip closing to be third. Arthur, ON resident Henry piloted the Muscle Mass son to the win for his wife, trainer Shannon Henry, and his partner John MacLeod of Kincardine, ON. The win was the gelding’s second in 11 starts this season, and gives him some Gold Series hardware to go along with the Grassroots trophy he won as a two-year-old. Zagster Will Take Charge, Bee In Charge and Zagster will return to Mohawk for their second Gold Series event on July 11. Next up on the Campbellville oval’s Ontario Sires Stakes schedule is the second Grassroots event for the three-year-old pacing colts, going postward on Friday, July 1. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: OSS Program Administration   Ontario Racing 10 Carlson Court, Suite 400, Toronto, ON M9W 6L2 416-213-1800   Follow the OSS on Social Media!  @ONTSSNews 

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 27 - A return to his local track turned into yet another convincing harness racing victory for Musical Rhythm Monday night at Mohawk Racetrack. The Ben Baillargeon trainee was a four-length winner in Monday's eight-horse $34,000 Preferred Trot. Musical Rhythm is now six for six at Mohawk this season and a perfect 11 for 11 on the WEG Circuit in 2016. The four-year-old son of Cantab Hall was making his first start Monday since finishing sixth in a leg of the Graduate Series at Tioga Downs on June 12. Driven by Mario Baillargeon, Musical Rhythm trotted along in mid-pack until getting his cue to march on first up around the final turn. Fearless Man, who had made a second-quarter move to the lead, led the field around the far turn and held a narrow advantage over the first over challenger at the three-quarter pole in 1:24. In the stretch, Musical Rhythm powered right on by Fearless Man and pulled away from his rivals with ease. The Baillargeon trainee trotted home in :28.2 for the comfortable victory. Whiskey Tax, who led at the opening-quarter, finished second, while Olympic Son was third. Musical Rhythm now has 11 wins from 13 starts this season for earnings of just under $200,000. He is owned by Santo & Nunzio Vena, Claude Hamel and Ben Baillargeon. Monday's victory is the 20th career score for Musical Rhythm and pushes his career earnings over $295,000. He paid $3.20 to win. Musical Rhythm Top trotters were the main attraction Monday evening, but it was a pair of overnight performances that caught the attention of many. Five-year-old gelding Domitian Hall won the evening's fifth-race, a $20,000 overnight event, by just over 10 lengths in a stunning 1:51.2. The clocking was a new career-best for the son of Justice Hall and became the nation's fastest trotting mile of the season by an older male trotter. However, the same class was split into two races and four-year-old Rubber Duck would match Domitian Hall's mark with his own 1:51.2 mile later in the evening. The son of Muscle Mass knocked more than three-seconds off his previous career-best with the national season's record-equaling mile. In the fifth race, Domitian Hall and Jonathan Drury got away seventh and marched their way towards the front in the middle-half, ultimately grabbing command at the three-quarter pole in 1:24.3. The five-year-old finished off his mile with a :26.4 final-quarter for the blow out victory. In the ninth race, Rubber Duck sat in the three-hole until making a move to the front around the final turn for driver Jack Moiseyev. The five-year-old had to deal with Cash For Gold pressing him throughout the lane, but the Julie Walker trainee was game and held him off with a :28 final-quarter. Domitian Hall was making his debut for new trainer Carmen Auciello Monday night. He now has five wins in 21 starts this season and 14 throughout the course of his career. Rubber Duck picked up his second win in six starts this season Monday. His impressive mile gives him six career victories. Musical Rhythm held the previous season's mark for an older male trotter of 1:52, taken on March 7th at Woodbine. The fastest trotting mile overall this season in Canada is 1:51, posted by Hannelore Hanover in the Armbro Flight Final on June 18th at Mohawk. Monday's card also featured three $70,000 Ontario Sires Stakes Gold divisions for sophomore trotting colts and geldings. Bee In Charge took advantage of a stretch break by the leader to win the first division in a career-best 1:54.3. The gelded son of Manofmanymissions is a half-brother to the great Bee A Magician. Chris Christoforou guided the Per Henriksen trainee to his third win of the season. Zagster was able to convert off a second over trip from driver Trevor Henry to win the second split in 1:55.2. The gelded son of Muscle Mass is trained by Shannon Henry and now has two wins on the season. The final division featured a trio of horses (Will Take Charge, Dia Monde and Tony Soprano) coming out of the Goodtimes Final. Will Take Charge, who finished second in the Goodtimes, grabbed command in the second-quarter and never looked back en route to a career-best 1:53 score. The gelded son of Kadabra was driven to his third win of the season by Paul MacDonell for trainer John Bax. Live racing continues Tuesday night at Mohawk with another 10-race card. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 25 - The opening leg of the Summertime Series highlighted harness racing action Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack. The three-week series for sophomore pacing colts and geldings attracted a field of 11 for the $18,000 first leg. Dave Menary trainee Sintra entered Saturday's opening round undefeated in five starts this season. Despite a large field, Sintra was sent off as the 1/9 favourite from post three. Major Hill, also a Menary trainee, was blasted to the front by driver Doug McNair from post nine and posted an opening-quarter of :26.2. Sintra got away fifth with driver Jody Jamieson, who was able to angle out nearing the half to pick up cover. After stealing a :30 second-quarter, Major Hill paced a :28 third panel while being confronted by Some Gold, who was pressing first over. In the stretch, Major Hill turned aside the first over challenger, but Sintra was ready to pounce and shot off cover to pace home in :26 to win by 1¾ lengths in 1:50.4. Always A Hotshot, who was third over around the final turn, finished second, while Major Hill was third. A son of Mach Three, Sintra is now a perfect six for six to start his three-year-old season after going winless in three starts as a rookie. His wins this season include scores in an Ontario Sires Stakes Gold event and a Three-Year-Old Open on Pepsi North America Cup night. Sintra has now earned $86,500 this season for owners Brad Gray, Michael Guerriero and Menary Racing Inc. He paid $2.30 to win Saturday. In order to be eligible to the Summertime Series, the three-year-old pacing colts and geldings had to be non winners of $30,000 lifetime as of March 31, 2015. The second leg of the Summertime Series will take place next Saturday (July 2). Live racing resumes Monday night at Mohawk with a 10-race card, featuring three $75,000 OSS Gold divisions for sophomore trotting colts and geldings. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

There were plenty of kids in hockey jerseys in the crowd, despite the 30c weather Saturday night at Hanover Raceway. That's because a tradition started close to 10 years ago when Hanover competed in the CBC Hockeyville contest to try and obtain funding for a new arena was kept alive in spirit. GM Gord Dougan says "The Hockeyville contest brought our town together like we hadn't seen in a long time." He adds, Hockeyville night at the races is a reminder that it takes all members of the community to come together to be successful. The Hanover Rotary Club and Hanover Canadian Tire sponsored the night with 6 brand new bicycles, and kids wearing a hockey jersey put their ballot into the box next to their favorite bike.  A total of 6 bikes were given away in total with a retail value over close to $1,000 dollars. The Rotary club also held a 50-50 draw during the night and are still looking for the winning ticket worth $585.00. On the track, 3 different drivers, Bruce Richardson, Ryan Holliday and Clark Stacey all had driving doubles. Holliday won races 1 and 3 behind Passionate Pete in 1:58.1 and Majormotionpicture in 2:02. Richardson won 2 trotting races, race 6 with Summer Shower in 2:03.4 and race 9 with Pembroke Chip in 2:02.3. And Stacey won race 5 with After Market in 1:57 and Race 7 with Selmas Wish in 1:57.4. Hanover Raceway plays host to its 3rd annual Country 93 Survivor contest next Saturday. Fans will have the chance to fill in a ballot in their program and will select a horse in 4 different races. If all 4 horses finish in the money, they advance to the Survivor finale on August 6th for a chance to win a High Def TV courtesy of Country 93 and HDTV in Walkerton. Racing fans can enter every Saturday night in July and can qualify for the final night more than once. Post time next Saturday is 7:15pm Gord Dougan

Elora, Ont. -- Harness racing driver James MacDonald had the early winning momentum while Trevor Henry finished strong to top the point standings in the Ontario Regional Driving Championship and advance to the National Driving Championship. Grand River Raceway hosted the nine-race Ontario regional event on Friday, June 24 and MacDonald was the point leader from start to finish. The 30-year-old resident of Guelph, Ont. opened the competition with a victory in the first race aboard Twin B Amour ($12.50) and also earned wins with Master Smile ($10) in the third leg and Little Whiskey Gal ($6.30) in the sixth leg. A pair of runner-up efforts in two other legs also padded his point total and he ended the competition with 78 points. "I'm pretty pumped," said MacDonald. "It's an honour just to be invited to race with these guys. They're a great bunch of drivers and any one of us could have won with the right card, the right horses, so I'm pretty happy to be the victor. "And I'm really happy Jody didn't win again," joked MacDonald, referring to five-time Canadian rep and two-time World Driving champion Jody Jamieson, who had moved into a two-way tie for second-place with Alfie Carroll before Henry began his late winning crusade. Henry ranked eighth for points before earning back-to-back victories in the final two legs with Topanga Canyon ($4.60) and Flexie ($7.10). Those victories propelled him to second-place in the standings to edge out Jamieson by one point (60-59). The 45-year-old reinsman from Arthur, Ont., who represented Canada at the 2013 World Driving Championship in France, said he was "ecstatic" to compete in the National Driving Championship again. The Atlantic Regional Driving Championship will be held next at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at Charlottetown Driving Park on Saturday, June 25, followed by the Western Regional at Century Downs Racetrack and Casino on Sunday, June 26. The Quebec/Eastern Ontario Regional will be hosted by Hippodrome 3R on Tuesday, July 12. The top two point-earners from each of the four regional competitions will advance to the National Driving Championship on October 14 at The Raceway at Western Fair District in London, Ont. The winner of the National Driving Championship will represent Canada in the 2017 World Driving Championship, which will be hosted in Canada. OFFICIAL POINT TOTALS 1. James MacDonald - 78 2. Trevor Henry - 60 3. Jody Jamieson - 59 4. Doug McNair - 57 5. Alfie Carroll - 55 6. Billy Davis Jr. - 49 7. Nick Steward - 47 8. Paul MacKenzie - 42 9. Bob McClure - 37 Kelly Spencer

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 24 - Lindys Nightmare and Collective Wisdom captured first round divisions of the harness racing Town Pro Series Friday night at Mohawk Racetrack. The Town Pro Series has been used as a launching pad by lightly raced three-year-old pacing fillies over the years and after Friday's first leg it appears the 2016 edition will continue that tradition. Lindys Nightmare turned in a sizzling 1:50.4 performance to capture the first division. The Frank Antonacci trainee took over the lead in the second-quarter for driver Rick Zeron and reached the half in :56.1. Lindys Nightmare paced her third-quarter in :27.4 and still had plenty of energy left for the stretch drive. The 3/2 favourite rocketed home in :26.4 to draw away from her five rivals to score a 4¾ lengths victory in a career-best 1:50.4. Twenty Three Red came from fifth at the three-quarter pole to grab second, while Southwind Tango, who followed Lindys Nightmare into the stretch, finished third. A daughter of Western Terror, Lindys Nightmare was making just her fourth career start Friday. The Antonacci trainee was unraced at two, made a break in her career debut on May 1st, but now has three consecutive victories. Owned by Lindy Farms of Connecticut, Lindys Nightmare has now earned $22,000 for her connections. She paid $5.10 to win. Lindys Nightmare Collective Wisdom enjoyed a pocket trip and pounced in the lane to score a 1:52 victory in the second division. Rocknroll Vision, the 4/5 favourite, went to the front and led the field of the five by the opening-quarter in :27. The public's choice went unchallenged through fractions of :56 and 1:24. In the stretch, Collective Wisdom was angled off the back of Rocknroll Vision by driver Jonathan Drury and the 7/2 second choice powered by to win by three-quarters of a length in 1:52. Queen Ideal finished third. A daughter of American Ideal, Collective Wisdom now has two wins in five starts this season after going winless in four outings at two. The Richard Moreau trainee has now banked $22,900 this season for her 1187422 Ontario Inc. ownership group. Collective Wisdom paid $9.60 to win. Collective Wisdom In order to be eligible to the Town Pro Series, the three-year-old pacing fillies had to be non-winners of $30,000 lifetime as of March 31, 2016. The second round of the Town Pro will take place next Friday (July 1). The first leg of the Summertime Series highlights live racing Saturday night at Mohawk. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

Morag and Jim Watt have been breeding and raising Standardbred racehorses on their Clinton area farm for three decades and are fixtures on Clinton Raceway's Sunday afternoon harness racing programs. This Sunday, however, their homebred filly Watt Machs Me Win will line up alongside some of Ontario's finest three-year-old pacing fillies in an elimination for the track's signature event, the Kin Pace. "It's really exciting to be able to have one to race in the Kin Pace, right here at home," said Morag Watt. "You work your whole racing career, you strive to have good horses, and to have one that's good enough to even enter is kind of a little thrill." Watt Machs Me Win heads into the $8,000 elimination with five starts under her belt this season, one over the half-mile oval at The Raceway at Western Fair District and four on the seven-eighths mile surface at Mohawk Racetrack. While she's yet to find the winner's circle, the filly has been showing steady progress. "She's just started back this year, she's only had a couple of starts, so she's still sort of racing into form," noted Watt. "We're looking forward to her three-year-old year. "We tend not to push our two-year-olds overly hard, we like to let them mature a little bit before we really ask them to exert themselves, so we sort of were conservative with her last year in her starts and in her training," Watt added. "Hopefully with a little bit of maturity she's ready to roll this year." Jim Watt taught Watt Machs Me Win her early lessons and handled training duties on the daughter of Mach Three and Feisty Form through her two-year-old campaign, but the couple opted to send her to trainer Richard Moreau in early May, after the first start of her sophomore season. "It's very unusual for us to send a horse away, but we felt that this filly showed enough potential that we wanted to give her every opportunity this summer to race in the stakes," explained Morag Watt. "It just seemed like a good strategy to send her away for the stakes season to see if she could reach her potential." The Watts hope the filly's knowledge of Clinton Raceway's half-mile surface will work to her advantage in Sunday's second race, where she faces a field that includes two fillies from the division's top tier. At the rail, Bad As Leader comes into the Kin Pace Elimination off a sixth-place result in the $438,000 Fan Hanover Final at Mohawk on June 25 and, from Post 4, Cracklin Rosie rides in on a two-race win streak including a victory in the opening leg of the Gold Series at Mohawk on June 4. "That's all part of racing, you just have to accept it," said a pragmatic Watt about the deep field. "Sometimes it doesn't play out the way that you imagine it will before the race, so that's when you depend on the driver's expertise to use his best judgement when he's behind the gate. "That's what makes it exciting and gives everyone an opportunity, because anything can happen," she added. Travis Henry will steer Watt Machs Me Win from Post 6 in Sunday's test, with the top two fillies from each of the three eliminations, along with two third-place finishers selected by random draw, advancing into the $60,000 Kin Pace Final on July 3. Sunday's eliminations are the eighth edition of the Kin Pace, named in honour of the Clinton Kinsmen, who introduced pari-mutuel wagering to Clinton Raceway in 1970. The Final takes place on the last day of the Kinsmen and Kinettes annual PlucKIN' Fest, which features a jam-packed weekend of activities kicking off with a Chicken BBQ and Craft Beer Night in the Clinton Raceway grandstand on Thursday evening. For more information about the Kin Pace Eliminations please contact Clinton Raceway at 519- 482-5270 or visit Jessica Carnochan

Betting Line’s stakes-record equaling victory in the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup highlighted a harness racing record-setting evening last Saturday at Mohawk Racetrack. A total of $5,241,459 was wagered on Saturday’s 15 race card to set a new Pepsi North America card record and a new Mohawk Racetrack single-card handle record. Saturday’s wagering total is the highest single-card handle figure in the 53 year history of Mohawk Racetrack. The previous record was $5,006,896 wagered on the 2014 Canadian Pacing Derby and Metro Pace card. For the second year in a row, the Pepsi North America Cup handle record was broken. The 2015 edition saw a total of $4.2 million wagered to break the previous record of $3.8 million in 2005. “It was a truly special, record shattering night for the Pepsi North America Cup Saturday evening at Mohawk,” said Jim Lawson, CEO for Woodbine Entertainment Group.  “The atmosphere was electric with fans young and young at heart, core and new customers, enjoying a night out.  Saturday night certainly proved that Standardbred racing is alive and well in the province.” The highlight of the wagering menu Saturday was the mandatory payout on the Jackpot Hi-5. With a carryover of $489,912 brought into Saturday’s mandatory payout, horseplayers wagered $1,210,071 of new money into the Jackpot Hi-5 pool. The previous Mohawk record handle also featured a Jackpot Hi-5 mandatory payout. A record crowd of 17,602 passed through the entrances to Mohawk Racetrack Saturday evening. Fans were treated to live music, food trucks, giveaways and the world’s finest harness racing. New records were also established on the racing surface. Always B Miki posted the fastest mile in the history of Canadian harness racing with a 1:47.1 mile in the Mohawk Gold Cup. Betting Line equaled the Track and Stakes Record with his 1:47.4 winning mile in the $1 Pepsi North America Cup. Hannelore Hanover trotted to a Track Record and equaled a World Record with her 1:51 performance in the Armbro Flight for trotting mares. Social Media was buzzing throughout the night Saturday, as fans chatted about the event on various platforms. The hashtag #NACup trended in Toronto, while Mohawk debuted an event specific filter for the Pepsi North America Cup on Snapchat. Live racing continues all summer long every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at Mohawk. Post time each night is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 19 - A total of $1,210,071 was wagered into the harness racing Jackpot Hi-5 for Saturday night's mandatory payout at Mohawk Racetrack on Pepsi North America Cup night. The carryover entering the night was $484,912. The new money wagered into the Jackpot Hi-5 brought the total pool to $1,694,983. Those who connected with a winning ticket scored a return of $6,538 for a $1 ticket or $1,307.60 for a $0.20 ticket. Here are the top five finishers from Saturday's Jackpot Hi-5 race. 1st: #6 Carracci Hanover (7/2) 2nd: #12 Asap Hanover (8/5) 3rd: #4 Mckinney (17/1) 4th: #8 Shadow Place (12/1) 5th: #11 St Lads Lotto (10/1) The Jackpot Hi-5 pool helped bring the total handle for Pepsi North America Cup night to $5,241,508, a new Mohawk Racetrack and North America Cup night record. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 18… Betting Line, driven by David Miller, demonstrated his off-the-pace talent by flying from fifth to first to win the $1 million Pepsi North America Cup, the richest harness racing pacing event in the world, Saturday at Mohawk Racetrack, by one length in a stakes, track and Canadian record equalling score of 1:47.4. The stakes record was originally lowered at Mohawk by Thinking Out Loud in 2012. Betting Line’s win in the 33rd edition of the Cup is also 19th time that an elimination winner has also won the final. With the win, trainer Casie Coleman, who just celebrated her 36th birthday, earns her second career North America Cup title. “This was all I wanted for my birthday and Betting Line made it come true,” said the Cambridge, Ontario resident, who won her first Cup in 2010 with Sportswriter. Betting Line, the even-money favourite, settled into fifth, while driver Randy Waples marched Control The Moment off the gate from post nine towards the front. The Brad Maxwell trainee made the front ahead of Racing Hill to post a :26.4 opening-quarter. Heading to the half, driver Sylvain Filion took a shot at the lead with Lyons Snyder from third, but Waples kept the tempo hot and parked the first-over challenger to the half in :53.4. Around the final turn, Lyons Snyder began to fade away first-up while Control The Moment continued to power along on the lead. Racing Hill circled around the tiring Lyons Snyder as Betting Line was moving up into the action on the outside from fifth. After a three-quarter clocking of 1:20.3, Control The Moment brought the field into the lane with a pair of challengers ready to battle. Racing Hill overtook the lead with less than an eighth of a mile to go, but Betting Line was in striking range pacing powerful strides just a few lengths back. Betting Line surged by Racing Hill in deep stretch to win. Control The Moment faded to third. “I always said I wanted to see him get a trip from off-the-pace where he had cover and that worked,” said Coleman. “Dave drove him perfect and they were going all kinds of quick fractions. I was a little worried that he was a bit too far back, but I saw the clock pop up 1:20 and a piece so I was kind of happy.” After 16 attempts at Cup glory, Hall of Fame driver Miller can now say he has captured his first Cup. “The first time I drove a horse in this race was Falcons Future, I mean that was in ‘94 so, yes, this is very sweet,” said the Ohio native. “He has been very impressive both weeks and I like his never give in attitude.” The son of Bettor's Delight, notched his 10th victory in 17 career outings and earned $500,000 for the win. The brown colt lifted his lifetime purse earnings to $1,119,922 for owners West Wins Stable of Cambridge, Christine Calhoun, of Chatham, and Mac Nichol, of Burlington. Betting Line paid $4.20, $2.90 and $2.40, combining with Racing Hill ($3.70, $3.30) for a $116.30 (3-6) exactor. A 3-6-9 (Control The Moment, $4.10) triactor was worth $77.60, while a $1 Superfecta [3-6-9-4 (Boston Red Rocks)] Superfecta came back $121.75. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 18... Pure Country, driven by Brett Miller, showed she has off-the-pace power when she captured the $438,000 Fan Hanover final for harness racing three-year-old pacing fillies on Saturday evening at Mohawk Racetrack, part of the Pepsi North America Cup undercard. The Jimmy Takter pupil followed mid-pack as elimination winner Good Will Hanover laid down fractions of :26.1, :54.3 for the half and 1:22.2 for three-quarters. Into the final turn, a first-up Lindwood Beachgirl put pressure on the tempo-setter as Newborn Sassy followed second-over. Pure Country, the 2-1 favourite, found live third-over flow after being shuffled back to seventh. Pure Country angled off cover at the head of the lane, and once the pacing miss was fed open racetrack, she marched past her foes to capture the rich final in a new lifetime mark of 1:49.3. Darlinonthebeach finished second, one length behind the victress. L A Delight got up for third. "There is nothing better than owning and breeding, and then ending up winning one of these races like this," said Diamond Creek Racing's Adam Bowden. "He [Brett Miller] was third-over coming off the final turn. She looked like she was full of pace and I was confident." Pure Country notched her second victory of the season and 12th lifetime. With the win, the daughter of Somebeachsomewhere and Western Montana earns millionaire status, lifting her career earnings to $1,178,953 for owner/breeder Diamond Creek Racing. Pure Country paid $6.10 to win. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 18 - Harness racing driver Yannick Gingras put Lady Shadow on the front and never looked back to win the $370,000 Roses Are Red Saturday night on the Pepsi North America Cup undercard at Mohawk Raceway. An impressive group of ten older pacing mares clashed in the Roses Are Red, but just like last year, Lady Shadow took home the winner's share of the purse. The Ron Adams trainee was put on the engine by Gingras from post three, as the rest of the field lined up in post position order. Lady Shadow carved out fractions of :26.3, :54.1 and 1:21 to bring the field to the top of the lane. In the stretch, the Adams trainee continued to power along and showed her class winning by a length and a half in a career best 1:48.1. "Believe me I was surprised too that there was no speed on the outside," said Gingras. "I watched a few of her replays and looked at her lines from last year and before that because I was actually thinking about racing her off the back, especially with the way the card has been playing out, the front hasn't been that good. "Obviously she is better on the front, her lines show that, but when the gate folded nobody left so it made my decision easy." Waasmula, who got a pocket trip, finished second, while Solar Sister came up the rail for third. A five-year-old daughter of Shadow Play, Lady Shadow pushed her career earnings over the $1 million mark with her 19th career win. She is owned by David Kryway, Carl Atley, Edwin Gold and BFJ Stable. Lady Shadow now has three wins in nine starts this season. She paid $10.50 to win. Mark McKelvie  

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 18...Marion Marauder, driven by Scott Zeron, rallied off a perfect second-over trip to score the $268,000 Goodtimes final for harness racing three-year-old trotters on Saturday evening at Mohawk, part of the Pepsi North America Cup undercard.   At odds of 8-1, the Michael Keeling trainee sat fifth past the first quarter in :27.4, as the parked-out 1-2 favourite, Dayson, battled with the early leader, Will Take Charge. Dayson was able to overtake Will Take Charge into the backstretch, but before Dayson marched past the half in :56.3, Tony Soprano was on the move from fourth. Marion Marauder tracked his cover. While Dayson and Tony Soprano duelled in the turn, the bettor's choice broke stride as they went by the three-quarter pole in 1:25. As the field of 10 turned for home, Marion Marauder fanned off cover and used a :27.2 final kick to trot past his rivals and take a new 1:52.4 lifetime mark by half a length. Will Take Charge finished second and Blenheim railed for third. "I was confident in him so I pushed him out of the gate and I was able to land a spot where I saw John [Campbell] floating on the outside with a really nice horse of [trainer Bob] McIntosh's," Zeron said regarding Tony Soprano. "So, I was happy to have that cover and finally be in the right spot-be within two lengths at the three-quarter pole, and he delivered." Marion Marauder notched his second victory of the season and third lifetime. With the win, the son Muscle Hill and Spellbound Hanover lifts his career earnings to $495,234 for owners Marion Jean Wellwood, of Stratford, and Devin Keeling, of Cambridge. Marion Marauder returned $18.40 to win. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, June 18 - Hannelore Hanover crushed her harness racing rivals with a Canadian Record performance in the $267,000 Armbro Flight Final Saturday night on the Pepsi North America Cup undercard. The Ron Burke trainee toured Mohawk Racetrack in a career best 1:51 to match the World Record for four-year-old trotting mares and establish.h a new Canadian Record for older trotting mares. Driven by Yannick Gingras, Hannelore Hanover cleared to the front at the opening-quarter in :27.2. The daughter of Swan For All posted middle-fraction panels of :56 and 1:24.1 to lead the field to the top of the lane. In the stretch, Hannelore Hanover turned the race into a blowout and pulled away with ease. She trotted a :26.4 final-quarter to win by 6½ lengths in 1:51. "I knew should could go like that last week, she was totally wrapped up," said Gingras. "I knew she had a couple big miles in her that's for sure. "She's fresh and never been racing against tough horses, so she was always within herself, but it was a scary (fast) mile tonight, but she still had more." Shake It Cerry rallied from seventh to finish second, while Rules Of The Road grabbed third. Owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and Frank Baldachino, Hannelore Hanover was competing in just her second Grand Circuit event Saturday. Last season, she dominated the Indiana Sires Stakes and won 8 of 19 to bank over $295,000. The Burke trainee now has seven wins in 8 starts this season to bring her seasonal earnings to $246,000. The Armbro Flight victory gives Hannelore Hanover 16 career wins and a bankroll of over $550,000. A $2 win ticket on Hannelore Hanover returned $2.20. Hannelore Hanover Mark McKelvie  

After winning a pair of Grassroots divisions at Mohawk Racetrack on Thursday evening, harness racing driver Jody Jamieson topped that accomplishment by capturing three more divisions on Friday. Picking up where their masculine peers left off, the three-year-old pacing fillies delivered seven impressive Grassroots performances on the Campbellville oval’s Friday evening program and Jamieson waved at fans from the winner’s circle following Races 5, 7 and 9. The Moffat, ON resident started his win streak with lightly raced Forever Liza, guiding the filly to her first-ever Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) victory in a personal best 1:52.3. The Bettor's Delight daughter drifted out widely in the stretch, but still hit the wire three-quarters of a length ahead of Selling The Dream and Kays Shadow. “She has just been getting better and better with every start. Tonight she smelled the ribs and was going after them in the stretch, but she got to the wire first in spite of that,” quipped Jamieson, referring to the racks of ribs that were flying off the barbecue just beyond the rail the filly drifted toward. Jamieson crafted the win for trainer Mark Steacy of Lansdowne, ON and owner Hudson Standardbred Stable Inc. of Hudson, QC. The filly — who has three full-siblings with $200,000-plus in earnings — now boasts a record of two wins and one second in five sophomore starts. Jamieson’s second appearance in the winner’s circle came aboard “family horse” Noone To Depend On. Owned by his father, trainer Carl Jamieson of Rockwood, ON, and sister, Brandy Jamieson of Milton, ON, Noone To Depend On controlled the pace from start to finish, reaching the wire in a personal best 1:52.2. The fan favourite finished four and three-quarter lengths ahead of Miss Babe Delight and Windsongmagnifique. “She really impressed me tonight. Usually she can’t cut the mile, but she just exploded tonight when I called on her and won very easily,” said the driver. “She should be one of the best Grassrooters.” Noone To Depend On captured one Grassroots division last season and boasts a record of two wins and two seconds in eight sophomore starts to date. The Santanna Blue Chip miss boosted her lifetime earnings to $77,230 with Friday’s win. Jamieson completed the driving hat trick in the sixth division with fan favourite Thisorthat Hanover, who also cruised to a four and three-quarter length win in 1:52.2. HP Sissy and Tempus Seelster rounded out the top three. “Thisorthat can flat out fly,” said Jamieson. “She has had issues in the past, but Doc (Moore) seems to have her on the straight and narrow. She’ll likely go to the Gold now, and if she stays in this current form she’ll be heard from.” A Gold Series winner at two, Thisorthat Hanover is trained by Dr. Ian Moore of Guelph, ON for Scott Horner of Toronto, ON. The Sportswriter daughter was a $110,000 purchase from the 2014 Harrisburg Yearling Sale and Friday’s victory pushed her career earnings just over her initial purchase price, to $111,900. The final division was captured by another filly that is expected to make the leap back up to the Gold Series when it returns to Mohawk on July 9. Twin B Thong stepped out from behind cover in the stretch to score a two and three-quarter length victory over Twenty Three Red and Bad Lightning in 1:52.3 and trainer Casie Coleman is hoping the Sportswriter daughter has recovered the form that propelled her to second spot in the two-year-old pacing filly division last season. “She trained back huge, but had a bunch of issues when she shipped home,” said Coleman. “We took some time off and got her back to herself tonight, finally. “She’ll most likely go back to the Golds now, if she stays good,” added the Cambridge, ON resident, who shares ownership on the filly with West Wins Stable of Cambridge, Mac Nichol of Burlington, ON and Steve Calhoun of Chatham, ON. The other three divisions went to Windsun Glory, Bourbon Seelster and Sports Expert. Windsun Glory and driver Doug McNair captured the first division, slipping out of the pocket in the stretch and sprinting home to a two and three-quarter length victory in a personal best 1:52. Mattjestic Tempo and Heavenly Bet paced into second and third. The Guelph resident piloted the Mach Three daughter to her first-ever Ontario Sires Stakes victory for trainer Murray Brethour of Sunderland, ON, Windsun Farm Inc. of Uxbridge, ON, Kevin McKinlay of Holland Landing, ON and Jim Fielding of Toronto. Bourbon Seelster took the second division, adding a sophomore Grassroots trophy to the three she earned last season. Driver Mike Saftic of Campbellville engineered the 1:52 victory over Jimmys Little Girl and Maxim Seelster on behalf of trainer Robert Manders and his partners Scott and Keith Manders of Watford, ON. The fourth trophy went home with Sports Expert, who was also a three-time Grassroots winner last season. In rein to Billy Davis Jr. of Guelph, the Sportswriter daughter paced under the wire one and one-quarter lengths ahead of Buttermilk Hanover and Alphabet Queen in a personal best 1:52.2. Blake MacIntosh of Cambridge conditions Sports Expert for his partners Touch Stone Farms of Guelph and 30 Plus Stable of Trenton, ON. The three-year-old pacing fillies will make their second Grassroots start on July 11 at Grand River Raceway. Next up on Mohawk Racetrack’s Ontario Sires Stakes schedule is the Gold Series opener for the three-year-old trotting colts on Monday, June 27. Ontario Racing

Harness racing driver Doug McNair will be making his NA Cup driving debut and trainer Casie Coleman will be looking for her second Cup triumph when they send out Ontario Sired pacers Magnum J and morning line favourite Betting Line, respectively, in the $1 million race. Casie Coleman said she isn't the least surprised there are two Ontario Sired horses in Saturday's (June 18) $1 million Pepsi North America Cup at Mohawk Racetrack, including her trainee Betting Line, the 5-2 morning line favourite, and Magnum J trained by Gregg McNair. "We've got great stallions, we've got great broodmares. We've got a really good program," Coleman said of the Ontario Sires Stakes program. "Here we are with two Ontario Sired horses in the final of the $1 million North America Cup -- two out of 10 with all those Somebeachsomewheres and other American sires that are very, very expensive... Hopefully, they show themselves well and people are wanting to buy Ontario Sired more." Betting Line, a son of Bettor's Delight out of Heather's Western, won the faster of the two NA Cup eliminations on Saturday, June 11 with a 1:49.1 victory that was three-quarters-of-a-length better than Lyons Snyder. Winning the elimination gave Coleman the right to pick her post for the final. She selected the post three on behalf of driver David Miller and her fellow owners Ross Warriner, Christine Calhoun and Mac Nichol, all from Ontario. They purchased Betting Line for $60,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sales Company's 2014 yearling sale in Harrisburg, PA. Coleman, a resident of Cambridge ON, won the 2010 Pepsi North America Cup with Sportswriter, now a leading stallion in Ontario that stands at Tara Hills Stud in Port Perry, ON. "I'm lucky enough that I've been in enough of these big races now that it's just another race," she said when asked about the pressure a trainer feels the week of a big race. "Obviously, it's a million-dollar race, so it's a big one and we want to make sure we don't mess anything up, but it's the same daily routine that we always go through." Coleman said Betting Line, the winner of his Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) Super Final a year ago, is primed and ready for Saturday's $1 million final. "He had a really good week," she said Thursday. "I trained him on Tuesday a couple of trips. He trained great and I went into the vet after he trained and everything looked really good. Blood was good and he's sharp, sound and healthy. Everything seems A1 right now." Magnum J will have a tougher assignment for the father-son training and driving team of Gregg and Doug McNair of Guelph, ON. The son of Big Jim out of Jamirotoy will start from post 10 in the 10-horse field. Doug will be making his North America Cup driving debut. "First or last it's going to be a good experience," Doug said. Even though the pressure's off having the outside post, Doug said he would "rather have had the pressure of having the one or two or three hole... than to have to come from the outside. But, I guess, it's only where you're starting from." Magnum J was purchased for $10,000 by Gregg McNair and Hanover, ON residents Tony Lawrence and William Brown at the 2014 Forest City Yearling Sale in London, ON. In 2015, the gelding won one of the premier events for Ontario Sired horses when he captured the $200,000 Battle of Waterloo at Grand River Raceway in Elora, ON. The pacer was saddled with the seven-hole in that race and Doug said Magnum J has been particularly unlucky with post positions. In Magnum J's last two starts, Doug has had to craft money-winning trips from far outside starting spots. Magnum J was fourth in his $75,000 Somebeachsomewhere division at Mohawk on June 4 from the 10-hole. A week ago, he started in the closed from eighth at the top of the stretch to be fourth in his $50,000 NA Cup elimination. "He couldn't race any better than he did the last two starts. He came home in :25.4 one day and he was probably six, seven wide in the stretch. Then last week he came home in:26.2 into a big, strong headwind," Doug said. As for working out a winning strategy in the $1 million final, Doug said he'll have to see how things unfold off the gate. "He can leave as fast as you want him to leave, but going for a million dollars you know they won't leave you alone on the front end. Everything is different behind the gate. It would be nice to get away at the back and have them go big fractions, but sometimes that's not the way it goes either. Play it by ear and hopefully we get lucky," he said. "It's just a bad post. He's as good as any horse in there, I think." Regardless, Doug said he's determined to make his first NA Cup drive a good experience. "I've got a bunch of my buddies coming out to watch. I still have a lot of high school buddies around. They don't understand racing, but they'll have fun being there. The race is on TSN2 and (Magnum J) is in the race. You've got no shot if you're not in it. It's the 10-hole, but it's better than being also eligible." Doug said he's also looking forward to driving Ontario Sired four-year-old pacing mare Solar Sister (Mach Three--Cabrini Hanover) in the $370,000 Roses Are Red final for owners and breeders David Willmot of King City, ON and Clay Horner of Toronto. Solar Sister won her Roses Are Red elimination on Saturday (June 11). "She's been really good, but that's a tough race. There's some good mares in there, but I got lucky and won it last year (with Lady Shadow) so it would be nice two years in a row," Doug said. As for Coleman, she said she is relishing Betting Line's success even more after deciding to downsize her stable. "Right now these smaller numbers are working for me. I'm actually making more money on my bottom line with smaller numbers. It's a lot less stress, less staff, fewer owners and fewer horses. I'm really enjoying how I'm doing it now," she said, adding she will enjoy herself even more if Betting Line wins the big one on Saturday. "Now he just needs the trip to work out and we'll see if we can get out picture taken," she said. by Dave Briggs Standardbred Communications Ontario Racing

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