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TROIS RIVIERES, QUEBEC – Lagerfeld, who had shared the 1:58.2 fastest winning trot time of the year at Hippodrome 3R with See You Men, claimed that distinction outright on Friday evening at the Trois Rivieres oval, closing to a 1:58 harness racing victory in the $5000 Preferred trotting feature. Trainer/driver Raymond Gingras, who shares ownership in the winning son of Yankee Glide with John and Jim Fielding and Herb Liverman, had Lagerfeld racing behind cover until the far turn, where he moved up sharply to contend with pacesetter Missionoftheheart. Lagerfeld proved the best in the latter stages, defeating the frontrunner by 1¾ lengths while raising his lifetime bankroll to $744,614. The $4000 co-featured trot went to the Muscle Mass mare Massmade, with the heavy favorite seizing command at the ¾ and remaining in control to the wire in 2:00.1. A winner in this class here on June 9, Massmade looks headed towards the highest level of local trotting stock after the victory for driver Pascal Berube, who guided three winners on the night, trainer Yves Tessier, and owner Francois Morin. In a $4000 Preferred event for pacing mares, Wild River Swan also had to travel the difficult first-over route, yet she still was able to hold off strong late rusher Uptown Woman by a half length in posting a 1:57.2 triumph. Jocelyn Gendron drove the daughter of Sportswriter for trainer Francis Richard and owner Dr. John Bradbury, and the victory should keep the winner tight for upcoming Quebec Plus Series battles with divisional leader YS Tallia and other major contenders. The sharp racing fans were dialed in on Friday night at 3R – second choice Broncos Sena won the first race and paid $5.90, and then the last nine races were all won by the public choice. On Sunday the featured $6000 Preferred pace gathers together six tough customers, five of which have already won in 1:56 or better at 3R this year, and YS Tallia’s 1:54.2 seasonal fastest clocking could be in jeopardy given good weather. For more information and a free race program, please visit www.québecjockeyclub.com.    Club Jockey du Quebec

TROIS RIVIERES, QUEBEC - With the Quebec Plus series for province-bred older horses taking a week off before its final preliminary round next weekend and its $30,000 Championship races on Sunday, July 14, the focus at Hippodrome 3R this weekend will be on a series on Preferred races, the top non-stakes class - which will feature no fewer than nineteen Quebec Plus Series horses looking to maintain or gain sharp racing form. Two of the winners from Quebec Plus action for trotting mares, Kascara Rosa and Eau Naturelle, will be at opposite ends of the starting gate for Friday's $5000 Preferred feature - Kascara Rose from post one and Eau Naturelle from post six. Also in the field is Lagerfeld, whose 1:58.2 victory here May 26 stands as the co-fastest trot of the year at 3R; he begins from post three. But the early favorite starts just to his inside - Holiday Party, who has a win at the track's top level this year and who was third against males in the Quebec Plus first prelim before making an uncharacteristic break in stride last time. The ten-race Friday card also features a Preferred event for second-level trotters and a Preferred for pacing mares. On Sunday the top contest on a nine-race card will be the $6000 Preferred pace, slotted for race four. Five of the six horses in the field have won in 1:56 or faster already this year over the 3R half-miler; the other, Kinnder Jackson, was second to the good veteran McKinney in a Quebec Plus race in the first prelim round, timed in 1:56. Early favorite in this race is the veteran Saulsbrook Peach, who will begin from post four. The gelding was a 1:55.3 winner when last at the Hippodrome on June 16; last week he was second in a 1:53 mile at Rideau Carleton. Outlaw Turn N Burn, Appleby Hanover, and Surf Report all have won in the local top class this year, and Hooter Shooter brings to this race a three-race winning streak against lesser opposition. A second-level Preferred handicap for pacers and another second-level Preferred trot have also been carded for Sunday. First post for Friday evening's action is slated for 7 p.m., while Sunday afternoon's racing has a 1 p.m. scheduled start.   Club Jockey du Quebec

TROIS RIVIERES QUE - The second annual Coupe Ben Hur, matching talented young harness racing drivers Doug McNair and "hometown hero" Louis Philippe Roy, produced an outstanding contest enjoyed by all concerned on Sunday afternoon at Hippodrome Trois-Rivieres, with McNair having a spectacular day but still edging out the tenacious Roy by only three points, 56-53. The Ben Hur tournament format (each driver must start once from each post once in the other races, and then can pick their own horses, plus the 8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 pointsystem) helps to ensure close competition, but it's almost hard to believe that McNair could put up a 7-4-2-0-1 scoresheet and go into the last race with the morning line projection saying he should tie for the title. But Roy stayed near him through the competition with a 7-2-2-2-1 tally, and only four points behind "turning for home," but in the final race Roy finished third and McNair fourth, enabling the Ontarian to join Sylvain Filion as a Coupe Ben Hur winner, with Roy second, oh so close, for the second straight year. (Note neither driver finished worse than fourth in the eight-race competition.) McNair's quartet of wins at 3R was almost matched on the card by Roy's three, as LP won a race outside the competition, and neither driver put a hoof wrong the entire day, displaying their sulky craftsmanship and showing why they are two of the young stars of the game. The card also featured second round action in the Quebec-Plus series for province-bred pacers 4-years-old and older, aiming for spots in their $30,000 Championship races on July 14. Mares went in two $6500 sections to open the card, while the males had one $6500 divisions in this second prelim. YS Tallia, divisional Q-bred champion in 2017, recorded her second straight series victory as the heaviest of favorites, this week with Louis Philippe Roy in the sulky for trainer Michel Allard and owner Yves Sarrazin. Last week the Western Ideal mare YS Tallia went 1:54.3 for the fastest local mile of the year; Sunday, after an early move to the top, she lowered that clocking a tick to 1:54.2; still on her horizon, just a further tick away, is the divisional track record of 1:54.1--which is held by YS Tallia's full sister, My Tallia Ideal. In the second cut for the distaffs, the Big Jim mare Lune Bleu, second to YS Tallia in the first leg, took early control from the pole for driver Stephane Gendron, the track's winningest driver this year, then faced an outside challenge to the three-quarters from race favorite Miss Rockadali. That foe continued to press Lune Bleu through the lane, and then pocketsitter All You Can Dream entered the fray up the rail, but Lune Bleu persevered and won by a neck in 1:56.1, a lifetime best, for trainer Maxime Velaye and owner Guy Corbeil. The Q-bred series for older performers was before this year restricted to 2-5YOs; Atomic Million AM won his division in 2014 (3YO), 2015 (4YO), and 2016 (5YO), but his loss (fifth) as a 2YO prevented from being the only "sweeper." This year, with the change in age eligibility, the Million Dollar Cam gelding Atomic Million AM can become the first horse to win four Championships, and his second straight preliminary win came in 1:55.1 Sunday. This was a Coupe race, and Doug McNair blasted out in :26.4 with the winner, putting favored (by $10) McKinney and Roy in behind him. Controlling the pace from there, Atomic Million AM held off first a hard raw challenge by Majo Lou Beka, then a late charge from 2016 Quebec champion HP Patriote by a length for owner/trainer Alain Martin; McKinney (2014) stayed for third and completed a Trifecta of former champions. The big card also featured a $4500 preferred handicap event on each gait, both races counting in the Coupe. The trotting event was taken by the favored Angus Hall mare Talbotcreek Suzie, who went out right to the lead for McNair, then had her task made easier when early challenger Missionoftheheart broke at the start, leaving Rocky Boy and Roy in the pocket. Talbotcreek Suzie moderated the pace, then picked it up when the plucky Ice O Late pressured her the last half, winning in 2:00.1 by a half-length; Rocky Boy, who had a left rear bandage come unwrapped early in the race, was in tight between horses in early stretch and could do no better than third. Yves Tessier conditions the talented mare for owner Francois Morin. The preferred handicap pace was a capturing of the spirit of competition of the day. McNair got Rainbow Palace right to the lead; Roy got away midpack with cover with Hooter Shooter, then went three-wide before the ¼ up to uncovered position and fought with Hooter Shooter from the half onward. There was virtually no separation between the top two from off the third turn, with the rest of the field halfway back to Montreal; in the stretch battle between the two pairs, favored Hooter Shooter, despite the" impossible" trip, got the better of his rival by 1¼ lengths, the Badlands Hanover gelding winning for the third time, and second straight in this class, in 1:56.2 for trainer/owner Marc Andre Simoneau.   Club Jockey du Quebec

MONTREAL — The abandoned Hippodrome de Montreal grandstand looks over a weed-choked field, a mountain of dirty snow covering the track where horses once thundered past on their way to the finish line. In the almost 10 years since the harness racing track closed, the structure has been quietly decaying as a series of municipal and provincial administrations have struggled to put a plan in place for the immense track of land northwest of Montreal's downtown. Now, that era will likely come to an end in the coming days and weeks as the city moves forward with plans to demolish the clubhouse and decontaminate the 434,000 square-metre terrain. Before that, Montreal police and a team of social workers are expected to make a final scan to ensure no squatters remain. The demolition comes none too soon, according to Coun. Marvin Rotrand. Rotrand, who has represented the district since 1982, believes successive municipal administrations have wasted time in redeveloping the massive vacant terrain into family-friendly housing. "It's a prime and choice site, and it's really nonsense that it's been allowed to remain vacant decade after decade," Rotrand said. The track, known for most of its history as Blue Bonnets, opened in 1907 and closed in 2009. Various proposals have suggested placing anywhere between 3,000 and 8,000 condo units on the site, which is one of the largest parcels of undeveloped land that is relatively close to downtown and accessible by public transit. Community activists are also lobbying for up to 2,500 social housing units on the site. The demolition will be a sad moment for Sylvain Filion, a a four-time Canadian driver of the year who spent the first decades of his career at Blue Bonnets. Filion says his earliest memories include playing in the packed grandstands as a six-year-old as the standardbred horses flew by. "There used to be a huge crowd there for Sunday afternoon racing," said Filion, who moved to the Toronto area after the track closed down. "You don't see crowds like that at the races any more. The ambience was just incredible." Filion, 49, remembers the camaraderie in the barn, the friendly competition and the excitement leading up to big events, such as the Prix d'Ete held every August. "I never thought they'd demolish that place," he said. "At one point it was one of the biggest tracks in North America." At one time, the busy track employed thousands of drivers, trainers, grooms and race officials. But by the 1990s, the industry was in decline. The city purchased the land in 1991 and sold it to the province seven years later. Since the closure, various municipal and provincial governments have negotiated for a plan to redevelop the site, which served as a temporary concert venue for Irish rock band U2 in 2011 and as a temporary snow dump this past winter. Last year, the province agreed to cede the land to the city in exchange for a share in the profits once the lot is parcelled out to developers for condo development. Despite the upcoming demolition, Rotrand says any future housing remains years away. "We're now at the stage where we're actually going to demolish, but doesn't mean anything will happen imminently," he said. By Morgan Lowrie / The Canadian Press Reprinted with permission of The Canadian Press  

TROIS RIVIERES, QUEBEC - Three-year-old pacers were in the harness racing limelight Sunday afternoon at Hippodrome 3R in the first preliminary of their Quebec-bred series, known as the "Coupe des Eleveurs," or literally "Cup of the Breeders." Two divisions of colts and geldings contested $7500 purses; there was one ten-horse field of fillies in action in an $8250 event.   The Sportswriter colt Wildriverbumblebee, making his first start since setting a 1:54.3 stakes and track record in winning his two-year-old Q Championship last September 4, had plenty of sting in his 2017 bow, buzzing home in in 1:56. Stephane Brosseau refused to take the pocket behind hard-leaving Western Phil and paid a 27.1 price for command, but after rating the middle half to 1:00 he had plenty left for the dash home, with Western Phil retaining second over favored Doc Semalu, coming off an Ontario Roots win from post ten. Francis Richard had the victorious colt in prime form immediately for owner/breeder Dr. John Bradbury.   In the other division, the Shanghai Phil gelding Rebel Voyager brought winning habits and early speed to 3R from Ontario and took his field wire-to-wire for driver Stephane Gendron in 1:58, giving trainer Francis Richard a sweep of the colt sections. ICR Racing is the owner and breeder of the promising sophomore (both of the breeders of the colt winners still own their horse - appropriate in the "Coupe des Eleveurs.") Noplay sat the pocket throughout to be second, while favored Majo Lou Beka, away fifth in the six-horse field despite the rail, had to go a long uncovered route and could not sustain his move though holding for third.   The Shanghai Phil filly D GS Elsa overcame her bulky ten-horse field in the best way - make two moves to get the top, get to the half in 59.3, and then sprint home in 58 to complete a 1:57.3 mile that was her third straight victory. Yaris Barama, the favorite who finished a neck shy, lost no honor in the race, starting from post ten, coming three-wide late on the second turn to get to first-over past the half, retucking in the pocket, and then challenging again approaching the wire, only to come up just shy of the talented winner, guided by Jonathan Lachance for trainer Guylaine Fortin, the latter co-owner and co-breeder Daniel Surprenant (continuing the owner/breeder-"Eleveurs" theme). Last year's Championship winner Queen Elsa had a hard trip from the trailing post nine and ended up fifth.   The two-year-olds start their Quebec stakes in just three weeks, and several hopefuls made their lifetime debuts in a $3500 freshman-only pace. The winner was the Sportswriter filly Butterfly BG, who made two moves to the lead, then held off Power Fog to the inside and Art of the Master to the outside (both colts) in 2:02.4 for driver Stephane Brosseau, trainer Daniel Martin, and owner/breeder Gaston Bibeau.   Between the races all of the Quebec two- and three-year-olds made a stop in front of the four horse in the eighth race - and who else to get good advice about the local-bred series than its fastest pacer, Half A Billion, by virtue of his 1:52.2 win in the 4-5YO male pace on June 11, also the fastest mile of the season here. Half A Billion then went out and made what looked like easy work against a talented $8000 Gold Invitational field, coming uncovered into twin back fractions of 28.1 and still winning handily in 1:53.4 for driver Stephane Brosseau and trainer Francis Richard (both completing triples) and the partnership of Michel and Francois Letarte, Jean Allaire, and Corey Giles, who saw their pride and joy win his sixth straight at 3R.   FINISHING LINES - The veteran Abundasass took a conditioned trot today in 2:02.2 - one day after he had won an Invitational trot at St-Hughes on the Quebec regional circuit in 2:04.4!   Jerry Connors    

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, October 2, 2016 - The theme of the day at Hippodrome 3R on Sunday afternoon was "longshots," as a track with a 46.2% chalk rate and a $9.65 average payoff heading into the harness racing card produced as many winning favorites (four) as horses who paid $18.50, and as second-place finishers who were 36-1 or higher. Four times the Superfecta was not covered in the fourth position, producing an "all" situation. Neither favorite got the job done in the two featured $4200 "nw $20000 lifetime" events, one at each gait, although trotter Brise Du Large came close-he set the pace, but missed by a nose holding off "pocket rocket" Dance Hall George, a Cash Hall gelding who took a new mark of 2:02.2 for driver Gaetan Lamy and trainer/owner Jean P Toulouse. In the pacing event, the Bolero Master sophomore colt Magster kept the pocket tight early as 43-1 shot HP Rayan Art Jules wouldn't let the 2-5 choice D Gs Ninja go through fractions over 28, 59.3, and 1:31.3 over a track that got heavier for midcard on, stayed in some more when the favorite melted from the battle, and used the passing lane to finally catch the stubborn frontrunner by a half-length in 2:03. Gaetan Lamy again found the pocket the winning place to be as Magster won for trainer Kevin Maguire and Ecuries Maguire Inc. Steeven Genois (no typo; he's known as "3 E's at 3R") put the Kadabra gelding R Rkadabra, dismissed at 14-1 despite winning his last race, on the lead in the $4000 co-featured trot, rattled off splits of 28.1, 58.3, and 1:29.2, and then kept his horse alive in the face of a big comeback from early-miscuing favorite Uncle Freddie, winning in 2:01 for trainer Marc Lemay and his Gestion Marc Lemay Inc. No one should have been surprised at Genois's tactics in this trot - in the $3600 co-featured pace, conducted just before the rains came, he sent 6-1 shot Trys Little Prince on a turnpike try with fractions of 27.1, 56, and 1:25.2, only to be nabbed by a neck by favored D J Power in 1:56.1. D J Power is a Major In Art gelding with the winning touch, running his record to nine victories in 17 seasonal starts, with Pierre-Luc Roy, who had the day's other driving double, having sulky duty for trainer/owner Jean Marc Roy. Finally, there is the interesting story of Reposession, a freshman gelding who beat older horses in a lifetime best of 1:59.1 for driver Stephane Gendron and trainer Yves Tessier (both leading their percentage categories at 3R) - and how he connects to the biggest stable in North America, the winner of 3R's Prix D'Ete in two of its three editions. The breeding of Reposession is directly traceable to western Pennsylvania (by way of New Zealand) and the formidable Ron Burke / Weaver Bruscemi empire, with partners on each side of the breeding. Reposession is a son of Foreclosure N, who won $800,000 in top company after being purchased as a yearling from New Zealand, stood in Ohio for a year, and now is at stud in Ireland; his mom is Pupetta, who like Foreclosure N was raced by Burke in the latter stages of their careers. Reposession was a 1:58 horse in the Ohio Sire Stakes this summer, which wasn't what his ownership had in mind, so local owner Francis Morin purchased the horse at the end of August, and his 2-for-3 record at 3R shows he's prospering in his new home. Quebec Jockey Club Laurent Sauve

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, July 30, 2016 - Strokin set a world record for a race of two miles over any size harness racing track when he won the $4000 "2 Milles" Pace at Hippodrome 3R Sunday afternoon in 4:02.4. That clocking reduces the previous record for the distance, set right at 3R by Aaron's Majesty (Denis St-Pierre) 374 days ago, by a full second. There was plenty of early movement in the marathon race, while the lead changing hands three times during the officially-recorded early fractions of 30, 1:01.4, and 1:32. After that, any reporting of fractions is "unofficial" as handheld, but one clocker's watch had the fourth and final leader, Strokin, completing his brush to the lead under the guidance of 3R's leading driver Louis-Philippe Roy before a mile clocking of 2:01.4, then going on with even rating under full control in 2:31.3, 3:02.1, and 3:32.3, drawing clear to be ahead by three lengths at the stretch call and the same margin at the finish in the world record mile. Bazing Brad, an import from the west side of Ontario's Sarnia Racecourse, completed an outstanding training feat by conditioner Yves Tessier by giving him a 1-2 finish in the elongated race by being next in line at the wire. Strokin, a seven-year-old son of Whosurboy owned by Francois Morin, had recently set a track record for 1½ miles at Ormstown, Quebec, a 3:12.3 victory in which he came his last ¾s in 1:29.4; over the even-longer distance here, he came his last 1¼ miles in 2:30.4 and his last quarter in 30.1. Following a long-established Quebec tradition, there will be a five-mile race at regional track St-Aime des Lacs on Saturday, August 14, for which this and the Ormstown race were "prep races"; whether Strokin will head to St-Aime des Lacs, and threaten either that track's 5-mile record of 10:59.1 set by Sea Donkey last year or the world record of 10:54.1 set by Life's Thrills at the Hippodrome de Quebec in 2001, is still an open topic, but if going he could be a threat to those marks. The second preliminary round of the Coupe de L'Avenir (Future Stars Series), with $7500 for each of two divisions of both pacing colts/geldings and of pacing fillies, captured all of the aspects of racing babies nicely - the need for education and the unpredictability the newcomers can show, but also the promising raw speed, which may only get better as they grow and race more. One two-year-old who seems to have "put it all together" already is the Sportswriter colt Wildriverbumblebee, who took a lifetime mark of 1:57.4 in his easy open-length victory. Moved by Louis-Philippe Roy to the outside before the quarter to contest the lead, Wildriverbumblebee came his last three-quarters in the vicinity of 1:27, his last quarter officially in 28.2, to take a nice mark in just his second start. Dr. John Bradbury bred, trains and owns the impressive two-year-old; Dr. Bradbury came back in the next race with a horse he trains and co-owns, Brussebeach, but instead of winning driver L-P. Roy here we had winning driver P-L. Roy (Pierre Luc), with his younger brother L-P second. In the other colt division, Histoire Enchantee, which translates to "enchanted story" in English, had an open lead for 7/8 of a mile, but turning for home the even-money favorite's histoire became much less enchantee to his many backers, as he "blew the turn" in racetrack parlance, bolting out about five-/six-wide late on the final curve, and could not rally enough to regain the ground lost to C L Sportsaction, who made it 2 for 2 in the Future Stars while lowering his record to 1:59.3 for driver Jonathan Lachance, trainer Mario Lachance, and owner/breeder Ecuries C Leblanc Inc. In the first leg of the two-year-old filly series last week 10 ladies entered, which meant they went all in one dash; this week 12 dropped in to necessitate two sections, but then there were three scratches, reducing the fields to four and five respectively. The first cut was held as a non-betting race, and again the highs and lows of two-year-old racing were illustrated. The high was shown by the Shanghai Phil filly (philly?) Vee Breeze, who was on top, lost the lead, and then rallied at two points while winning in a personal best of 2:02.3 for driver Gaetan Lamy, trainer Kevin Maguire, and Ecurie Maguire Inc. Unlucky to show the low point was HP Celina Show, who broke at the start, rallied to put a neck up on Vee Breeze at the ¾, only to make another miscue on the far turn, although her recovery to stay second offers promise for future rounds. In the second division, Kinderuntouchable, winner of last week's sole division, kept her L'Avenir record perfect after two starts, stepping home in 29.2 to reduce her mark to 2:02.2. Justin Filion, son of Yves and brother of Sylvain, handled the sulky duties behind the daughter of Allamerican Native for breeder-owner-trainer Denitza Petrova. The $3800 overnight feature, a conditioned trot, deserves a mention because of the powerful front-end performance of the seven-year-old Musclesxtrodinair stallion Caroluzzo, who was guided to victory by Stephane Gendron in 1:57.3 - missing his personal mark by a single fifth, missing the divisional track record of Whitewater Rapids by only 2/5, and shy of Seeyou Men's fastest trot mile of the year locally by a mere 3/5 of a second. Daniel Martin conditions the fast trotter for Michael Cote Gagnon. Horsemen's honors for the afternoon went to the father-son team Michel (three training victories) and Sylvain (three winning drives) Fontaine; Michel owned two of those winners and Sylvain the other one. Hippodrome 3R will now be dark until Tuesday, August 16 while the local major car race becomes the focus of the area, including usage of part of the raceway. The trotters and pacers will return to action five days before the third edition of the "modern" $200,000 Prix D'Ete for the best pacing four-year-olds, with 2015 Harness Horse of the Year Wiggle It Jiggleit and his Team Teague bandwagon of backers looking at making Quebec history in the Sunday, August 21 contest. From the Quebec Jockey Club

Trois-Rivieres, Quebec - Live harness racing returns to the Hippodrome 3R on Wednesday evening with the start of the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series for two-year-old trotters. The last half of the racing season will be highlighted by the second renewal of the Prix D'Ete on Sunday, August 23 for a purse of $200,000 featuring the best four-year-old pacers in North America. On Wednesday there are two divisions of the Quebec-Bred Series. They will compete in three preliminary rounds with the top eight point earners throughout the series returning on Sunday, September 6 for their respective $65,000 finales. The first race first division is headed by Panamas Boy from post six for driver Stephane Brosseau. This son of Crazed may have just two lifetime starts but he is already in the record books having won a qualifier two starts back at Mohawk Raceway in an impressive clocking of 1:59.4, the last quarter a speedy :28.4 for trainer Jacques DuPont and owner/breeder Gestion Levesque 2005 Inc., QC. Other contenders include EAV Naturelle from post two for driver Mario Charron, who is fresh off scoring is 2,000th career victory, Tuscans Memory (post 7) and Dolly PV from post one. The third race second division spotlights return winner Wildwild Men from post three for driver Robert Shepherd. This gelded son of Muscles Mass already has five starts this season and two wins for trainer Isabelle D'Darveau. His last start was a victorious effort at Georgian Downs in an $18,000 division of the Ontario Sire Stakes in 2:00.3. Three starts back he also won an $18,000 OSS division. But it will not be a walk in the park for Wildwild Men as faces some stiff competition from KFB Amigo Cool in post four along with Skyflex in post five. Post time Wednesday is 7:00 pm. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. The Quebec Jockey Club

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, July 26, 2015 - Three-year-old pacers were featured Sunday afternoon at Hippodrome 3R, with an event for each sex in the fourth and final preliminary round of their Quebec-Bred series, with the top horses advancing to their respective $65,000 final on September 6. Trainer Dany Fontaine probably wishes the final was next week, as his Mach On The Beach has really found himself in his last three starts, on Sunday taking a new mark of 1:54.3 in winning the final $7500 colt/gelding elimination. Driver Pascal Berube sent the Mach Three gelding swiftly out of the gate, with the rest of the field of five in a post positional lineup. (Western Bayama, the division's defending champion, was scratched; in fact, trainer Yves Filion had a scratch in each Q-series event -- filly Wanda Bayama, who had won two prelims, was also withdrawn.) Sitting next-to-last early didn't sit too well with odds-on favorite Sugarsam, though, and the meet's leading driver, Denis St Pierre, moved him out midbackstretch to rush at the leader by the 28.1 quarter. Berube played some hardball, though, and while challenging in the middle of the second turn, Sugarsam took some nasty steps and drifted wide (not unprecedented behavior for him), finally settling back in last as Mach On The Beach got to the half in 56.2. At a bad positional disadvantage but game as can be, Sugarsam made another move frontward from about the same spot he had done a half-mile earlier, getting to Mach On The Beach by the 1:25 3/4s. Sugarsam behaved himself around the final bend this time, but he could not get by the determined pacesetter in a bitter stretch duel, with Mach On The Beach hanging on by a neck on the wire. Mach On The Beach didn't race at two and had been off the board in his first 10 career starts in Ontario until making the switch to 3R, where he has a record of 3-2-1-0, and he has shown that he should be competitive in the Championship for Ecurie Gaetan Bono Inc. Nine of the originally-programmed ten horses went postward in the filly division for $8250, with Voodoo Charm, winner of two of her prelim starts, also favored by the Quebec bettors at 2-5. (In the Quebec program, nine or fewer horses as entrants dictate a purse of $7500; if ten, one division goes for $8250; if 11 or more, the event is split for $7500 a division.) Unlike Sugarsam, Voodoo Charm did get to visit Victory Lane -- but only after a seven-minute inquiry into the action early on the second turn, the turn which had also plagued Sugarsam earlier. Big Bertha and Sylvain Lacaille left the gate quickly to get the lead before the 27.2 opening split, with Mario Charron moving just before the quarter from third with "Voodoo." As Voodoo Charm, who had made an early break in her previous start, started to go around Big Bertha to the lead into the second curve, the two came in very close quarters, and Big Bertha took a small stumblestep, which was the source of the inquiry, but no reason for placing was eventually found. Voodoo Charm went on to post splits of 57.2 and 1:27.4, and despite bearing out slightly in the lane she was strong to the wire, winning by a clear margin over Big Bertha in 1:57.2. The meet's leading trainer, Maxime Velaye, combined with Charron, who earlier had swept the Daily Double, to establish this filly as the favorite for her final for owners Yvan Mondoux, Guy Corbeil, Alexandre Morin, and Francois Laverdiere. Hippodrome 3R will now shift its focus to another type of horsepower for the next two weeks, as the Trois-Rivieres Grand Prix auto race will be the focus the next two weeks. The casino and simulcast wagering will be available at 3R during this period, and on the return card Wednesday, August 12, two-year-old trotters will begin their preliminaries in the Quebec-Bred series. Quebec Jockey Club  

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, July 5, 2015 - When a racehorse wins for the first time in its harness racing career it is called its maiden victory. Usually maiden victories do not come in the opening round of a $250,000 series, but that was not the case at the Hippodrome 3R on Sunday. Two of the three opening round divisions of the $250,000 Quebec-Bred Series for three-year-old pacers were captured by maiden horses. Starting in the third race first division for three-year-old pacing fillies, HP Rubis Joyce, winless in 12 prior starts, was given a perfect drive by Louis Philippe Roy, and the daughter of Perfect Union responded with a two and one-half length triumph in 1:59. It was the race favorite, Kinnder Elegance and driver Justin Filion, who left hard from post six and led the field through fast fractions of :27.4, :57.4 and 1:27.4, but sitting on his back patiently was HP Rubis Joyce and Roy, who waited until the top of the stretch to make their move. Then with a burst of speed, HP Rubis Joyce collared Kinnder Elegance coming down the stretch and then pulled away for her first victory. Kinnder Elegane was second with No Panic (Gaetan Lamy) third. Trained and owned by Nathalie Migneault with Erc Cechampion of Saint-Donat, QC, HP Rubis Joyce paid $10.80 to win. Then in the fifth race division for three-year-old pacing colts, SOS Justified and driver Mario Charron, in just his second lifetime start, having never raced at age two, posted a very impressive 1:56 triumph. It was HP Rayan Art Jules (Frances Picard) who took advantage of starting from the rail to take the early lead. Then at the opening quarter mile in :28.3, race favorite Sugarsam and driver Denis St Pierre came first-over and looked to take the lead away but went off-stride and has to take back aft. It was then that Charron came first-over with SOS Justified and they took command before the half mile marker in :58.1 and then picked up the pace. Sugarsam had regrouped and came first-over once again but to no avail as SOS Justified led to the three-quarters in 1:26.4. Coming down the stretch, SOS Justified and Charron were in command, winning by one and one-half lengths over HP Rayan Art Jules with Sugarsam, despite making the break, was third. Trained by Jean Tourigny and co-owned with Michel Damphousse of Quebec, SOS Justified paid $11.70 to win. It was a "walk in the park" in the sixth race second division for fillies as the overwhelming 1/5 wagering favorite, Voodoo Charm and Mario Charron has little trouble leading from start to finish. Charron and Voodoo Charm left from post six and held the field at bay through fractions of :28.4, :59 and 1:28.4., coming on in the stretch to win by two and one-half lengths in 1:58.2. Miss Bro (Stephane Brosseau) was second with Big Bertha (Pascal Berube) third. It was the second win three starts this year for Voodoo Charm. The Ponder daughter is trained by Maxime Velaye for owners Yvan Mondoux, Guy Corbell, Alexandre Morin and Francois Laverdiere of QC and paid $2.40 to win. There are four weeks of preliminary rounds of the Quebec-Bred Series in July, with the top eight point earners returning on Sunday, September 6 for the $65,000 finals in each division. Live racing resumes at the Hippodrome 3R on Wednesday with first race post time at 7:00 pm. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. Quebec Jockey Club  

Trois-Rivieres, Quebec – The $250,000 Quebec-Bred Series for harness racing three-year-old pacers gets underway at the Hippodrome 3R Sunday with three opening round divisions. This series takes place throughout the month of July and then the top eight point earners return for the $65,000 finals on Sunday, September 6. Headlining the first of two filly divisions in the third race is the seasonable debut of Kinnder Elegane from post six for driver Justin Filion. This lightly raced daughter of Allamerican Native made only three starts last year as a two-year-old, but she won two of those starts that were both in this same series, the fastest a lifetime best 1:57.4. Trained, owned and bred by Denitza Petrova of Les Cedres, QC, Kinnder Elegance prepped for her debut today with a qualifying win at 3R in 2:00.2. Other contenders include HP Rubis Joyce (post 5) and No Panic (post 2). The colts do battle in the fifth race with Sugarsam in post seven the early favorite for driver Denis St Pierre. This gelded son of Sportswriter is the fastest horse in the field, shipping in after competing in stakes action at Mohawk Raceway, winning two starts back in a blazing 1:52 for trainer Helene Filion. Also starting from the outside is Killer Thriller in post eight for driver Sylvain LaCaille, who has been in the money the last four weeks. And there is a three-horse entry of HP Rayan Art Jules (post one), SOS Justified (post two) and HP Black Shadow (post nine). The second filly division is the sixth race and the overwhelming favorite is Voodoo Charm from post seven for driver Mario Charron. This daughter of Ponder just posted her lifetime mark last start at Mohawk Raceway with a three and one-length triumph in 1:53.4 for trainer Maxime Velaye. Voodoo Charm will be put to the test against contenders Miss Bro (post 6) and Big Bertha (post 4). First race post time Sunday is 1:30 pm. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club    

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, June 20, 2015 - The little three-year-old pacing filly, Rainbow Palace, put her two-race win streak against the boys at the Hippodrome 3R Sunday and came away with her third straight harness racing triumph in an exciting four-horse photo finish. Owned and driven by Francis Picard for trainer Dominique Picard, Rainbow Palace started from the rail in the ninth-race co-feature pace and got away in third place as Matts Phil (Pascal Berube) outgunned Shanghai Kang (Michel Nolette) as they sped to the opening quarter in :28.2. Then as the field walked to the half mile marker in :59.2, Picard came first-over with Rainbow Palace and then the pace quickened and Rainbow Palace could not gain on Matts Phil and settled into the two-hole before the three-quarters in 1:28.4. But as the field came around the final turn, Picard sent Rainbow Palace out again and the filly responded, collaring Matts Phil as they started down the stretch, those two, along with Barre Oblique (Sylvain Lacaille) and Y S Joe (Stephane Brosseau) made for the close photo finish. Rainbow Palace emerged the winner by a head with Y S Joe finishing fourth by just a half-length. Matts Phil was second with Barre Oblique third. The time of the race was 1:58.3. It was the third win in seven starts this year for Rainbow Palace as she preps for the upcoming Quebec-Bred Series. The daughter of Royal Mattjesty is owned by Francis Picard of Warwick, QC. She paid $4,60 to win. The third race co-feature trot saw a real dogfight early on as Beer Maggs (Kevin Maguire) got the early lead but Somoli E (Jerome Lombart) wanted the front and Beer Maggs made him pay, parking him to the opening quarter mile in :28 and then to the half mile in :57.1 before Somoli E cleared to the lead. Meanwhile, sitting in third place the entire time is R Rkadabra and driver Stephane Gendron. Now it was their turn to take command and they shot to the lead by the three-quarters in 1:28.2 and breezed homed to win by one and three-quarter lengths in 1:58.4. Beer Maggs head game and was second with Erge Baboche (Stephane Brosseau) third. A seven-year-old gelded son of Kadabra, it was the second straight win and third victory in the last four starts for K Rkadabra. He is trained and owned by Marc Lemay and paid $4.10 to win. Live harness racing resumes at the Hippodrome 3R on Wednesday with a special post time of 1:30 pm. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. Quebec Jockey Club    

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, June 2, 2015 - The third and final preliminary round of the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series for 4- and 5-year-old trotters will be raced at Hippodrome 3R this Wednesday night, with the top horses qualifying for their respective $35,000 harness racing series Championships on Sunday, June 14. There will be one $6500 event for mares, slotted for race 6, with $6500 divisions in races 1 and 3 for the horses and geldings - one of which is so dominant, wagering will not be allowed on him, for better betting balance for the bettor. The "super horse" is Maximuscle, who (as if he needed it) got the advantage of drawing post one for driver Mario Charron, trainer Maxime Velaye, and owners Ecurie Provoquante. After winning in the first preliminary leg in 1:58.4, the altered son of Angus Hall took last week off, but he'll back Wednesday in the third race, looking to stay sharp to win his third consecutive Series title, having won at 2 and 3, both in stake record time. The two horses who took the second round prelim divisions in Maximuscle's absence last week, Andovers Touch and SOS Ticket Master, were unfortunate at the post draw, getting the outside gate spots 5 and 6, respectively, in the 1st race prelim for the males. Andovers Touch won in the faster time last week (2:00.1, vs. SOS Ticket Master's 2:02.1), and was second to Maximuscle the first week, so it is likely that this Andover Hall gelding, driven by Stephane Pouliot for trainer Dany Fontaine and owners Ecurie Gaetan Bono Inc., will be the post-time favorite. In the sixth race lone cut for mares, Viva Bayama, winner of her first leg prelim, has a decided post advantage (3 vs. 7) over Canbec Kangourou, who won the only division in the second round, as the last two winners of the Quebec 3TF Championship square off in a field of eight. Viva Bayama will have the services of Denis St Pierre, who swept all three of the second round series pacing races Sunday, for trainer Sebastien Groux, while Canbec Kangourou, conditioned by Jean Tourigny, will have the sulky services of Jocelyn Gendron. Mention should be of Ocean Mist Beauty (post 2, driver Stephane Brosseau), who won a division of the first round elim and was second to Canbec Kangourou last week. The first of Wednesday's ten races at Hippodrome 3R will be going to post at 7 p.m. Vincent Trudel Quebec Jockey Club          

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, May 31, 2015 – Harness racing driver Denis St Pierre, the 2014 driving champion at Hippodrome 3R, swept all three $6500 second round preliminary divisions of the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series for 4 and 5-year-old pacers today at the mid-province track – and equaled divisional track records in two of the victories. First to add a line to the record books was My Tallia Ideal, a daughter of Western Ideal who shipped to 3R from Pocono Downs in Pennsylvania and promptly won her division of the two for mares, tripping the timer in 1:54.3 to equal the local standard for older pacing mares first set by Sans Frontiere in June 2013. St Pierre hustled the Michel Allard-trained mare, co-owned by breeders Gestion Mario Audet Inc and Yves Sarrazin, out of the gate, taking advantage of drawing inside her main rival Victoria Semalu, a winner last week. With “Victoria” settled in behind “Tallia” before the 27.2 first quarter, St. Pierre was able to rate an easy middle half before sprinted the last panel in 28.1 to beat his main rival by two lengths and tie the track mark. Three races later, the Shanghai Phil gelding Champagne Phil crossed the border east from Ontario and captured today’s only series division for horses and geldings, stopping the timer in 1:53.1. While driver St Pierre slowed the pace after a 27.2 opener with My Tallia Ideal, with Champagne Phil he reached the first marker in that same number, but went on to post fractions of 55.3 and 1:24.4 before going on to win by 2¼ lengths over McKinney. Trained by Francis Picard for owners ICR Racing, Champagne Phil might need to better today’s time next Sunday if he and Atomic Million AM, who won last week and skipped this race, go tête-a-tête tete in the final preliminary. The other of the mares divisions saw Champagne Shower take her second “Q”-series prelim in as many weeks, with St Pierre again taking the shortest way around as the daughter of Santanna Blue Chip won by 2 ½ lengths over Lutetia Semalu, who was second to Victoria Semalu last week, in 1:55.2. Yves Tessier trains the winner, now victorious in three straight starts, for owner-breeder Sotiorios Anastasopoulos. The next two cards of racing at Hippodrome 3R will feature the third preliminary round in the Quebec-Bred Series, with trotters going Wednesday night at 7 p.m. and the pacers back next Sunday at 1:30 p.m. The top winners in the preliminary legs will square off in the four series Championships, trot/pace and mare/horse combinations, with $35.000 on the line in each event, on Sunday, June 14. St Pierre would go on to take the tenth and last race for four sulky successes Sunday; no other driver, including 2015 meet leader Stephane Brosseau, had more than one. One of the other six winning drivers was Andre Champagne, and he guided Amazingdream Esa to victory while paying $130.40 for a $2 win bet, double the previous high for the year. Vincent Trudel Quebec Jockey Club        

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, May 31, 2015 - The best harness racing pacers eligible to the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series for 4- and 5-year-olds meet for their second preliminary round Sunday afternoon at Hippodrome 3R, with two $6500 fields of mares facing the starter in races 1 and 3 and a single $6500 dash for horses and geldings slated for race 6. In the first of the three preliminary rounds leading up to each division's $35,000 Championship, there were also two events for mares, with both events taken by the heavy favorite in a runaway. Each winner is back Sunday, but each faces a challenge if they are to keep up their series record unblemished. The Santanna Blue Chip mare Champagne Shower won by 11 lengths last week in 1:56.4, and she is justly the favorite for round two as she starts from post two in the field of six for driver Denis St. Pierre, 3R's defending driver champion; trainer Yves Tessier; and owner Sotirios Anastasopoulos. Among those in the wake of Champagne Shower last week was Chauleurs Fantasy, who also has the difficulty in starting from the outside post Sunday. But the daughter of Omar Khayyam, conditioned by Carl Duguay and to be driven by Stephane Gendron for Elevage Baie Des Chaleurs, should be better in this, her second start of 2015 - and in her last start of 2014, she won her $65,000 three-year-old Championship, with among the conquered that day being none other than Champagne Shower! In the other mares division, Victoria Semalu led at every call in scoring by over six lengths in 1:56.1, and again will draw her share of the fans' attention. The American Dream mare begins from post four for trainer Dany Fontaine, owner Ecurie Gaetan Bono Inc, and driver Stephane Brosseau, who has "come out of the gate" in hot form this season to be the leading driver at 3R to date. Starting two posts inside Victoria Semalu will be the Western Ideal mare My Tallia Ideal, who will be guided by Denis St. Pierre for trainer Michael Allard and the ownership duo of Gestion Mario Audet Inc and Yves Sarrazin. My Tallia Ideal comes to 3R after having been facing very good mares at Pocono Downs in Pennsylvania, where she won in 1:51.2 last month, and obviously her best mile makes her a major factor here. The divisional track record of 1:54.3, set by Sans Frontiere in 2013, could be in jeopardy in either division, given ideal conditions. In the lone event for horses and geldings, the field of seven will not miss Atomic Million AM, who takes this week off from the series after winning last week in 1:55.2, pacing his last half in 55.4. Certainly Bali (post seven, driver Marie Claude Auger) and My Lucky Bluejeans (post five, driver Stephane Gendron) will be comforted by the absence of Atomic Million AM after finishing second and third, respectively, to him last week. However, an invader from Ontario, Champagne Phil, should definitely attract a good share of the backing, coming off a 1:49.4 victory at Mohawk last Saturday. The Shanghai Phil gelding, set to be driven by Denis St. Pierre for trainer Francis Richard and owners ICR Racing, has post two on Sunday, and is comfortable winning on or off the pace. The first of ten races will start at 1:30 p.m. at Hippodrome 3R on Sunday. Quebec Jockey Club          

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, May 27, 2015 - Andovers Touch regained his winning form with a seven length romp Wednesday at the harness racing meeting at the Hippodrome 3R in winning the first division of the Quebec-Bred Series for four and five-year-old trotters. It was the second round of the series and without powerhouse Maximuscle in the race, Andovers Touch became the overwhelming 1/9 wagering favorite and he most certainly did not disappoint his backers. Driven by Stephane Polliot, the four-year-old gelded son of Andover Hall was following second-over cover from Somoli E (Jerome Lombart) who was trying to go after pacesetter Offson (Stephane Gendron) through early fractions of :28.4 and :58.4. Then the cover died as Somoli E dropped into third on the rail as Offson held a two-length lead from the start. It was then that Polliot let Andovers Touch cut loose and they trotted away from the field to win with ease in 2:00.1. Offson did hold for second with Somoli E third. Trained by Danny Fontaine, Andovers Touch is bred and owned by Ecurie Gaetan Bono, Inc. of Montreal, QC. It was his second win this year and he paid just $2.10 to win. The third race second division saw SOS Ticket Master and driver Gaetan Lamy sit a perfect two-hole trip as George S P (Stephane Brosseau) cut fractions of :30.1, 1:01.1 and 1:32. Then in the stretch Lamy sent SOS Ticket Master after George S P and they passed them by before the wire to win by three-quarters of a length in 2:02.1. Excel P V (Sylvain Fontaine) was third. In the lone mare division of the series which featured ten starters, it was Canbec Kangourou and driver Jocelyn Gendron taking full advantage of starting from the rail and wiring the field by four open lengths in 1:59.4. It was a lifetime mark for the four-year-old mare by Angus Hall and her third win in four starts this year. Ocean Mist Beauty (Stephane Brosseau) was second with Bambie Benjo (Rheo Filion) third. Canbec Kangourou is trained by Jean Tourigny and owned by Michel Damphousse of Louiseville, QC and paid $4.90 to win. Coming up on Sunday is the second round of the Quebec-Bred Series for pacing horses and mares, first race post time is at 1:30 pm. For more information visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com.  Quebec Jockey Club   Information : Vincent Trudel, 514-717-5899          

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