WILKES-BARRE PA -- In the $24,000 co-featured events at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono Saturday night, both winners used "pocket rocket" tactics to emerge with victories -- Extracurricular on the trot and Arthur Blue Chip on the pace. Extracurricular, a veteran Revenue S gelding owned by Darren Mahoney, had a tougher time making his rally effective -- as befits a 10-1 shot trying to catch a 1-5 pacesetting favorite, Somebody As. But Extracurricular dug in for the stretch battle with gameness and edged his frontstepping rival while taking a new mark of 1:52 at age nine for the brother team of driver Simon and trainer Rene Allard. Arthur Blue Chip was the 11-10 favorite in his event and collared pacesetting Somethinginthewind with a bit more ease, but then the son of Shadow Play had to stay in high gear to withstand the persistent first-over Ontario Success, whose bid for victory came up a half-length shy. Dr. Ian Moore conditions the winner, who was third in his Breeders Crown elimination last month, for the Shadow One Stable. George Napolitano Jr., the winningest driver in North American harness racing this season, visited Victory Lane five times on the Saturday card at Pocono to raise his margin over second-place Aaron Merriman to 22, with the score now Napolitano 743, Merriman 721. "George Nap" will get a chance to add to his margin Sunday afternoon at Harrah's Philadelphia, but then Merriman will compete on four cards -- Northfield Sunday night, The Meadows Monday afternoon and Northfield Monday night, and The Meadows Tuesday afternoon -- before Napolitano resumes sulky action here Tuesday night, concurrent with Merriman racing at Northfield. There are two more weeks of racing in the 2015 season here at The Downs, with the trotters and pacers going on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday evenings this week and next, with the final night November 21. From the PHHA and Pocono Downs
CHARLOTTETOWN, PE - Everyone is treating Silverhill Shadow as the one to beat in the Thursday night harness racing feature at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park. First race post time is 7 pm for the 12-dash card that features a field of eight pacers battling in the race 11 feature. Silverhill Shadow has post 5 in the $2,100 affair for trainer-driver Terry Gallant and owner Silverhill of Tignish. The four-year-old son of Shadow Play was an impressive 1:56 winner in his latest outing after making an equipment break on Oct. 11, and being scratched as the Thursday night feature favorite on Oct. 1. Race analyst Les McIsaac agrees with the Red Shores race office's selection of Silverhill Shadow as the morning line favourite. "He left a pretty good field in the dust last week after that near disaster the previous start," McIsaac said. "Steps up slightly but he's been here before and if he's able to secure the lead again it could be all over." Oh To Be Me is a major factor from post 7 with trainer-driver-owner Gary Chappell, fresh off a 1:55.4 third place finish in the preferred pace, along with the ultra consistent Van Zant, who has missed just two cheques from 25 starts in 2015, with Ron Matheson in the bike. Other entries include Perfect Escape (Marc Campbell), Cambest Kisser (Jason Hughes), J Rs Hurricane (Ken Murphy), Mcjestic (Walter Cheverie) and Cheyenne Ford (Kenny Arsenault). The back-up pace goes to post in race 7 with the renewal of the weekly rivalry between Lyndale Royal and Sinners In Heaven. Sinners In Heaven (Chappell) has post 5 in the $1,700 event while Lyndale Royal (Campbell) rides his four-race win streak from post 6. The evening trot class lines up in race 4 for a $1,750 purse with Frill Seeker the morning line choice for trainer-driver Arsenault and owner Ebbsfleet Stables of Stratford, Ont. The seven-year-old son of Angus Hall leaves from post 5 in the seven-horse-field. By Nicholas Oakes for Red Shores
DATE, 2015 - Harness racing trainer Dave Menary will arrive at Woodbine Racetrack on Saturday evening with eight Super Final contenders, including two division point leaders, but the Cambridge, ON resident says his starters have their work cut out for them in the Ontario Sires Stakes program's $2 million season finale. "When the sheet came out, you know Free Show drawing the 10-hole, and Nvestment drawing the 10-hole, it was just a heart-breaker," said Menary of the post position results for his top two-year-old pacing filly Free Show and two-year-old pacing colt division leader Nvestment Bluechip. "Nvestment he's just risen to the occasion. He's been my favourite colt since November and he's kind of lived up to it," said the trainer, whose Ontario Sires Stakes starters have earned a program leading $802,700 this season. "His last start -- to take a lifetime mark and beat Betting Line fair and square -- we raced the whole way, we were out there to race, and we're going to be out there to race again Saturday night. We're just going to have to overcome our post." In four regular season Gold Series starts Nvestment Bluechip posted three wins and one fourth to finish with 158 points. The son of Shadow Play and Hazes Zure Bet also won his Champlain Stakes division at Mohawk Racetrack on Sept. 12 and has earned $219,283 for owners Menary Racing Inc. of Rockton, Michael Guerriero of Brampton, Denis Breton of Welland and Thomas Kyron of Toronto, ON. The colt, a $40,000 purchase from the 2014 Harrisburg Yearling Sale, heads into Saturday's fifth race off a 1:51.1 personal best in the last Gold Leg of the season. His rivals in the two-year-old pacing colt division will line up in the order they finished in the point standings with Semi Automatic at Post 3, Voracity at Post 4, and Betting Line at Post 5. "I think the horse is as good right now as he's been all year, but I think it's the worst post he's ever had, so we'll see how those two factors together work out," said Menary, who will entrust the colt to regular reinsman Jody Jamieson of Moffat, ON. "We're going out there to win, so he's going to have to work pretty hard from the 10-hole, and we'll see how that pans out." In addition to Free Show, Menary will harness two other hopefuls in the freshman pacing filly season finale, which will be the first $250,000 Super Final to go postward on Saturday. Heavenly Hill and New Jersey-based driver Tim Tetrick landed Post 4, Maniana and Guelph, ON resident James MacDonald will start from Post 9, while Free Show and Jamieson will be handicapped by the outside Post 10. Bred and owned by Tom Hill of Hamilton, ON, Heavenly Hill was a winner in the Aug. 15 Gold Leg at Georgian Downs and the Art Colony daughter heads into Saturday's test off a runner-up effort at Mohawk on Sept. 28. Unlike her stablemates, Maniana did not win a regular season Gold division, but Menary says the Sportswriter filly has been in the picture in most of her starts. William Donovan of Ft. Lauderdale, FL owns Maniana, who was a $12,000 acquisition from last November's Harrisburg Yearling Sale. Free Show led her stablemates in the division standings, finishing third with one win, one second and three thirds for a total of 137 points, and the Badlands Hanover daughter was also victorious in her elimination and the final of the Battle of the Belles at Grand River Raceway. Hutt Racing Stable of Paoli, PA acquired the winner of $205,773 from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale for $14,000 and Menary says she may be the fastest two-year-old in Ontario in a sprint away from the starting gate. "I don't think there's any two-year-old colt or filly that can out leave her," attested the horseman. "I didn't want to have to try to prove it from the 10-hole, but she can absolutely follow the car, and we've done that all year, she's been so handy. You can follow the car out of there, and leave any kind of quarter you want to leave with her, and she'll just come right back to you." Division heavyweights Thatsoveryverynice, L A Delight and Twin B Thong will make their bid for the Super Final crown from Posts 5, 6, and 8, respectively, in the second race. Two-year-old trotting filly One Too Many makes her first start out of the Menary barn in Saturday's Super Final and the trainer says he and his staff have been tinkering with the young trotter's equipment in an effort to maximize her raw speed. "She's a filly that's made a good impression on me so far. Anthony MacDonald did a very good job with her all year," said the trainer. "The filly is maybe just a step behind the best fillies, but she has a very quick turn of foot. I think I've made changes that have helped her, and hopefully they don't backfire." Guelph, ON resident Anthony MacDonald will steer One Too Many from Post 2 in Saturday's third race on behalf of Rene Allard of Milford, PA, who purchased the Manofmanymissions daughter from the 2014 Canadian Yearling Sale for $14,000. Aside from Devils Advocate, who will start from Post 3, the big names in the freshman trotting filly division will be loaded on the outside of the starting gate. Division leader Caprice Hill gets Post 7, Emoticon Hanover will start from Post 8 and Could It Be Magic has Post 9. Menary's final group of starters will go postward in the seventh race, when the three-year-old pacing colts and geldings will wage the last Ontario Sires Stakes battle of their careers. Last season's Super Final champion Reverend Hanover and North America Cup Consolation winner Physicallyinclined are expected to give fans another epic battle from Posts 7 and 4, respectively, but Menary is hoping his trio can earn their share of the $250,000. "I think every colt in the race is a step behind the best two colts, so the three that I have in there, I would like to see them all get a piece of the pie, and the bigger the better," said the trainer. "This is supposed to be the glamour boy division for Ontario so they're all going to be going, they're all going to be racing, hopefully things happen and my three can all pick up good pieces." Sportsmanship will start from Post 2 for Kenneth Ewen of Georgetown, Denis Breton of Welland, Thomas Kyron of Toronto and Parkinson Farms of Lucan, ON, getting the driving services of Jody Jamieson. The Sportswriter gelding finished the season in ninth spot in the standings and Menary expects an off-the-pace effort from the winner of $109,890. Robert Hill and Tim Tetrick will start from Post 3 and Menary expects another solid effort from the game pacer. Hamilton resident Tom Hill owns the Jeremes Jet gelding, who has banked $172,790. The final member of Menary's three-year-old pacing trio is division point leader J Js Delivery, who posted one win, one second, two thirds and one fifth in the regular season to tally 104 points. The Jeremes Jet gelding battled hard all season and the trainer does not expect things to change in the season finale. "It's just been ultra-tough all year. He's gone a lot of hard trips and he's been going a long time," said Menary, who trains the winner of $222,031 for owner-breeder Robert Hamather of Exeter, ON and will entrust the lines to James MacDonald. "I think from the eight-hole we're going to be going for it. We've given him a lot of hard trips; I don't think we're going to stop now." In addition to being treated to eight outstanding Super Final battles on Saturday evening, Woodbine Racetrack fans will also receive an Ontario Sires Stakes ball cap with their program purchase. The evening's first race goes postward at 7:25 pm, with the eight $250,000 Super Finals featured in Races 2, 3, and 5 through 10. For the full program click here. Ontario Horse Racing
OCT. 1, 2015 - Harness racing trainer Ben Baillargeon says Tessa Seelster may not be the prettiest filly to watch on the racetrack, but when it comes to grit and heart the three-year-old pacing filly has no equal. "She's a very gutsy mare, because she almost died as a two-year-old," explained Rockwood, ON resident Baillargeon. "She was on the operating table for colic surgery and the small bowel ruptured so they had to sew it by hand, and the chance of her surviving was about slim and none." Not only did Tessa Seelster survive the surgery, she went on to race as two-year-old, posting two victories in seven starts, and on Thursday evening she captured her first Ontario Sires Stakes trophy in Gold Series action at Flamboro Downs. Starting from Post 3 in the first $105,000 division, driver Mario Baillargeon of Milton, ON settled Tessa Seelster into fourth as fan favourite Solar Sister fired off the starting gate to a :27.1 opening quarter. The resinman kept Tessa Seelster in fourth through the :56.1 half and then sent the daughter of Shadow Play up the outside, reaching the 1:24.4 three-quarters with a narrow lead. Tessa Seelster stayed game down the stretch, holding off Maplelea for a three-quarter length victory in 1:53.1. Capela was well behind the leaders in third. "The half-mile is not her best asset, and she still made it today, so I am very pleased with the result," said Baillargeon, who conditions the filly for Richard Berthiaume of Pointe-Aux-Trembles, QC. "Very pleased with the result and looking forward to next week." Tessa Seelster and the other nine leading point earners from the five regular season Gold events will make their next start in the $250,000 Super Final at Woodbine Racetrack on Oct. 10. "She will try her heart out anyway, because she's a very gutsy mare," noted Baillargeon. Among the fillies joining Tessa Seelster on the starting gate at Woodbine will be Thursday's other division winner, Glamour Seelster. With Guelph, ON resident Doug McNair in the race bike Glamour Seelster fired off the starting gate from Post 2 and landed third on the rail as fan favourite Wrangler Magic led the field to a :28.1 opening quarter. The pair continued to sit third as Wrangler Magic paced by the half in :57, then circled around the leaders to take command before the 1:25 three-quarters. From there Glamour Seelster cruised home a one and one-half length winner in 1:53, with Ms Mac N Cheese and Wrangler Magic crossing the finish line in her wake. "She's a high speed filly, she can pace as fast as any horse I've driven for a piece," said McNair. "She's getting better every week." The driver's father, Gregg McNair of Guelph, conditions Glamour Seelster for Lindsey and Connie Rankin of Lexington, MI. The win, her first in Gold Series action, improved the Jeremes Jet daughter's record to seven wins, one second and one third in 11 starts and boosted her earnings to $155,033. In addition to the sophomore pacing fillies' last regular season Gold event, Flamboro Downs also hosted the regular season finale for the two-year-old pacing colts on Thursday. Two-time Grassroots winner Continual Hanover made the move to the Gold Series level look easy, reeling in pacesetter Arsenic in the stretch to post a three-quarter length victory in 1:55.1. Fan favourite Nocturnal Bluechip was hot on Arsenic's heels in third. "He's always been right on the cusp of the Gold, but it was a bit easier to stay with the Grassroots," said driver Jody Jamieson of Continual Hanover. "Tonight he was real good, and dodged (division leaders) Voracity, Betting Line and Nvestment Bluechip, which is always good." Jack Darling of Cambridge, ON owns and trains Continual Hanover, who qualified for the freshman pacing colt Super Final with Thursday's victory. The Bettor's Delight colt will require a new driver for the Oct. 10 test as Jamieson is already committed to division point leader Nvestment Bluechip, but the Moffat, ON resident says the colt is a legitimate player in the season finale. "I think he's got a good chance with the right trip," said Jamieson of Continual Hanover's prospects. "He's peaking at the right time." In the second pacing colt division, Semi Automatic earned his second Gold trophy with an effortless six and one-half length score over New Talent and Cruise Patrol. The fan favourite and driver James MacDonald of Guelph, ON hit the wire in 1:55. "Semi was great tonight. He has had a great year," said MacDonald of the Badlands Hanover son. "Tonight he was pacing great, drew well (Post 2), so I moved him to the front and he controlled the race and won pretty handy." MacDonald crafted the win for trainer Tony O'Sullivan of Puslinch, ON and his partners Let It Ride Stables Inc. of Boca Raton, FL and J and T Silva Stables LLC of Long Beach, NY. The win bumped Semi Automatic into second spot in the division standings with 142 points from two wins, one second, one third and one fifth in the five regular season Gold events. The Gold Series regular season wraps up at Woodbine Racetrack on Friday, Oct. 2 with two $105,000 divisions for the three-year-old pacing colts and geldings, and then the Toronto oval will welcome the best horses from each division for the $2 million Super Final Night on Oct. 10. Ontario Horse Racing
Glenferrie Typhoon's force is looking more and more powerful every time he steps out of late. The Andy Gath trained trotter, who won Friday night’s Bacardi Lindy Trot in easy fashion, looks destined for bigger and better things. The six-year-old by Majestic Son out of Cyclone Vance now boasts back-to-back wins at Melton and next year’s Great Southern Star is potentially on the radar. After working hard three-wide for the first half a kilometre, Glenferrie Typhoon eventually found the top, giving early pacesetter Action Kosmos a trail in the 2240-metre race. Once in front driver Kate Gath applied the brakes and the gelding trotted through his first and second quarters in 32secs and 31.3secs, sprinting up down the back to get Action Kosmos off the bit and chasing (29.3secs) before blasting clear seemingly under a hold in the home straight to score by 10.8 metres in a mile rate of 1-58.9 (last quarter 27.6secs). Action Kosmos held on for second place, defiantly withstanding the challenge of Cold Sister in third. Later on the card Ellas Puppeteer beat Iceobar in the Empire Stallions Vicbred Platinum Country Series C Final. The four-year-old gelding by Shadow Play out of Smiley Ella, who smashed the track record at Charlton leading into Friday night’s race, rated 1-53.7 over 1720 metres from his inside-back-row draw. Trainer/driver Michael Stanley kept Ellas Puppeteer out of trouble early, going back to last before cruising around the field to assume control at the bell. Iceobar trailed and stuck on gamely thereafter but was no match for the winner. Ellas Puppeteer now boasts three wins from five starts and looks to have a sparkling metro career in front of him. by Cody Winnell >> Replays and results from Friday night's Melton trots.
The Puppet, Chris Alford, is not in town at the harness racing meeting at Melton tomorrow night but The Puppeteer sure will be. Ellas Puppeteer, who set chins wagging and people scouring the record books with a 1-52.8 win at Charlton last time out, will line up in the Empire Stallions Vicbred Platinum Country Series C Final. It is Race 10 at 10.40pm but punters will want to stay up late to see what eventuates. Ellas Puppeteer has had four starts for two wins and two seconds, the four-year-old gelding winning his last two with ease – his most recent win in track record time at Charlton. At his most recent triumph Ellas Puppeteer was parked outside leader Iceobar throughout before pulling clear for a mighty win by 12.4 metres, Stanley expertly pulling the strings. “It’s interesting because everyone has said that to me,” the reinsman said when asked about driving the gelding along coming around the home turn last time out. “On the track though, in the race it always felt like I had the leader covered.” Ellas Puppeteer is superbly bred, by top sire Shadow Play out of Smiley Ella, who the Stanleys raced for two wins from five starts. Smiley Ella won a Vicbred Super Series heat at two defeating Glenferrie Inn by 6.6 metres in 2-01.5 but bowed a tendon and only raced twice more after a lengthy stint on the sidelines. Smiley Ella’s dam, Exotic Strike, was also trained by the Stanley stable and won $171,945 in stakes – including victory in the rich Australian Pacing Gold Final at Moonee Valley in 2000. Ellas Puppeteer is also a half-brother to Arms Of Ink, who won two from two last year before also injuring a leg. His scans are all clear now and he’ll return to the track soon. As for Ellas Puppeteer he’s a C1, but not for long. “We think he can measure up (to the top-class four-year-olds)." :To be honest, the horse has got that much improvement in him,” Stanley said. “Once he develops a bit of gate speed he’ll be a lot better." "He’s learning how to race more every time.” Drawing eight behind likely pacemaker Iceobar from the pole is not ideal, Stanley freely admits. “It’s a hard one,” he said. “Dad and I were talking about it last night and he’s of the view that you take the luck out of it and come off the fence." "I think Iceobar would probably hold the lead." “But at the end of the day the horse (Ellas Puppeteer) has a long future and will win better races than this.” Cody Winnell
Nocturnal Bluechip made his Ontario Sires Stakes debut at the harness racing meeting at Mohawk Racetrack on Tuesday and sailed to an effortless win in the first of two $105,000 Gold Series divisions. Starting from Post 5 Nocturnal Bluechip and driver Paul MacDonnell of Guelph, ON led the field of two-year-old pacing colts and geldings to the quarter in :27 and then allowed Cruise Patrol to take command heading for the :55.1 half. Content to sit in second through the 1:23.1 three-quarters, MacDonell rolled Nocturnal Bluechip back to the front coming off the final turn and the colt powered home to a five and one-half length win in a personal best 1:51.1. Arsenic and Stonebridge Beach paced into second and third. “I spotted him at Blue Chip Farm last year and loved his looks and conformation,” recalled trainer Mark Steacy, who bid $97,000 for the son of Bettors Delight and Mcarts N Crafts at the 2014 Harrisburg Yearling Sale. “I passed on a few at Harrisburg to go after him. I thought at the time I overpaid, but was happy to have him.” Nocturnal Bluechip made his first lifetime start in an Aug. 11 overnight event at Mohawk, finishing fifth. In his next two overnight outings the colt posted a win and a second, so Steacy entered him in the Sept. 12 Champlain Stakes at Mohawk, where he finished second to Gold Series regular Betting Line. In just five starts Nocturnal Bluechip has almost repaid his purchase price, earning $93,601 for owners Landmark 8 Racing Stable of Kingston, ON, NLG Racing Stable of Wallkill, NY and Jane Phair of Wasaga Beach, ON. “He trained down very lazy, but always enjoyed his work,” noted Lansdowne, ON resident Steacy. “We gave him a late qualifier hoping to be good in the latter half and possibly catch the Breeders Crown.” The two-year-old pacing colts and geldings will compete in their last Gold Leg on Oct. 1 at Flamboro Downs, with the top 10 point earners from the regular season advancing to the $250,000 Super Final at Woodbine Racetrack on Oct. 10. If everything continues to go well for Nocturnal Bluechip, eliminations for the Breeders Crown are Oct. 16 at Woodbine, with the finals slated for Oct. 24. Trainer Dave Menary is also contemplating a Breeders Crown appearance for Nvestment Bluechip, who captured the second Gold division on Tuesday. From Post 6, reinsman Jody Jamieson of Moffat, ON fired Nvestment Bluechip out to a :27 quarter and eventually yielded to fan favourite Betting Line, who hit the half in :54.4. Betting Line continued to lead through the 1:24.1 three-quarters and was still on top when the colts turned for home, but Nvestment Bluechip rolled out of the pocket and hit the wire one-half length on top in a personal best 1:51.1. Betting Line settled for second and Voracity completed the top three. “I think we’re all pretty confident in him. He’s been a good colt all the way along, but everything’s really, really coming together,” said Menary. “His confidence is up, and our confidence is up in him.” The Cambridge, ON resident shares ownership of Nvestment Bluechip with Michael Guerriero of Brampton, ON, Denis Breton of Welland, ON and Thomas Kyron of Toronto, ON. In eight starts the son of Shadow Play and Hazes Zure Bet has posted four wins — three in the Gold Series and one in the Champlain Stakes — and one third for earnings of $219,283. The only disappointing performance on the pacer’s record came in the $685,000 Metro Pace Final when he made a miscue behind the starting gate and finished out of the money in sixth. “He can get a little sideways the odd time, and it was just bad timing, he made a little bobble for two steps, but it was at the wrong time on the wrong night,” said Menary. “When you’re going for that kind of money and you don’t even get a shot at it, that was pretty disappointing that week, but each week he is making up for it.” A $40,000 acquisition from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale, Nvestment Bluechip moved ahead of Voracity and Betting Line to take over top spot in the Gold Series standings with 158 points. Next up on Mohawk Racetrack’s Ontario Sires Stakes calendar is the 2015 Grassroots Championship Night this Saturday, Sept. 26, featuring $50,000 Grassroots showdowns in Races 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9 and 11. Ontario Horse Racing
Long Forest husband and wife Andy and Kath Gath made the trip to Swan Hill a worthwhile one on Tuesday to contest the Nyah Harness Racing Club’s September meeting after landing a stable double with a pair of four year old geldings – Mister Whittaker (Somebeachsomewhere/Twice As Hot) taking the He’s Watching @ Alabar Stud Pace for C1 class over 1750 metres and Valens (Shadow Play/Seymour Lady) the Lucky Chucky @ Stallions Australasia Pace for C2 class over 2240 metres. Mister Whittaker was ultra impressive in his event after racing in the open from gate six, with a running Earl Of Huntington (gate three) crossing One Knight Stand (gate two) shortly after the start. Cruising to the front on the home turn, Mister Whittaker careered away in the straight to record an unextended 25.6 metre margin in advance of One Knight Stand and Graceful Art (one/one) in a mile rate of 1-54.9. Valens bred and raced by Alabar Bloodstock starting outside the front line, brought up three wins in succession after moving forward to race in the breeze from the bell, defeating Oasis Dream (gate five) from mid-field by 2.8 metres, with Tennaya (gate four) 1.5 metres away in third place after leading for the last half of the journey. The mile rate was 1-58.2. Bunbartha trainer/driver John Newberry a regular at most Swan Hill meetings, snared the Angus Hall @ Mountain View Stud Trotters Handicap for T0 or better class over 2240 metres with 8Y0 Earl/Shine On Alisha gelding Just Call Me Earl, but not before giving his supporters a scare. Galloping away from 30 metres, Just Call Me Earl settled at the tail of the field with Majestic Flash beginning swiftly from 10 metres to lead. Assisted by both Mike Titan and Jacob Alm breaking during the run, Just Call Me Earl had improved to be three back in the moving line at the bell. Easing three wide approaching the final bend, Just Call Me Earl ran home best to gain the day by a head over Declaring along the sprint lane after following the pacemaker which held down third a neck away. Raced by the Newberry family, Just Call Me Earl recorded his 13th victory in 119 outings, returning a mile rate of 2-05.9. Quality 4Y0 Bettors Delight/Linda Grace mare Linda Lovegrace made a one act affair of the Sweet Lou @ Woodlands Stud Pace for C0 class over 2240 metres much to the delight of Ken Breckon’s The Good Sports Syndicate. Formerly with Mark Purdon, Linda Lovegrace now with Kerryn Manning at Great Western, was untroubled to lead throughout from gate two with husband Grant Campbell in the sulky, accounting for Drayton (one/one – outside winner home turn) by 16.5 metres in 2-03.1, with Clontarf Guy (three back the markers) a further 17 metres away in third place. The Manning/Campbell combination were to bring up a double when impressive former Kiwi 4Y0 Bettors Delight/Princess Alberta gelding Duke Of Albany streeted his rivals in the Four Starzzz Shark @ Empire Stallions Pace for C3 to C5 class over 1750 metres and by doing so, chalked up six wins in succession, the last five on Australian soil. Surprisingly crossed from gate two by Life Of Ted (gate four), Campbell immediately eased away from the markers to assume control, before racing clear on turning to register a 2.1 metre victory over Precious Cullen which faced the breeze from the bell. Life Of Ted battled on gamely for third after using the sprint lane and will no doubt benefit from the outing. The mile rate was 1-56.7. Local Woorinen trainer Joe Costa sent punters home on a happy note when the “star of the stable” Uncle Wingnut returned to his best form to land the Hurricane Kingcole @ Egmont Park Stud Pace for C6 or better class over 2240 metres in a rate of 1-57.8. With regular reinsman Michael Bellman aboard, Uncle Wingnut was taken off the gate from outside the front line to settle four back along the markers, with only Diamond Ace (gate four) behind him after being trapped wide and another of the Manning team Jaccka Art leading from gate three. Making a mid-race move to join the pacemaker at the bell, the pair were head and head for the final circuit, with Uncle Wingnut taking the lead on the home turn. Drawing clear on straightening, Uncle Wingnut prevailed by 1.1 metres over Diamond Ace which followed him home from the bell, with Daylight Dan (three back the markers) 11 metres away in third place. An eight year old gelded son of Courage Under Fire and Paulas Way raced by the Costa family, Uncle Wingnut has faced the starter on 77 occasions, resulting in 17 victories. *** The next Nyah meeting will be Cup Night – Saturday October 17. Len Baker
CAMPBELLVILLE, September 12 - Tony Alagna trainee Artspeak turned in a career-best harness racing performance of 1:48.2 to win the Simcoe Stakes Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack. A field of nine three-year-old pacers squared off in the $224,907 Simcoe Stakes. Casie Coleman trainee Reverend Hanover was sent off as the heavy 3/5 favourite off a pair of impressive victories leading up to Saturday's contest. The public's choice got away third, as Go Daddy Go blasted to the front and posted an opening-quarter of :26.1. Artpseak, the 7/5 second choice, dropped in fourth for driver Scott Zeron. Reverend Hanover made a second-quarter move to the lead for driver Steve Condren and posted a speedy half of :53.2. Around the final turn, Artspeak was given his cue to move from Zeron and came first up to draw within a length and a quarter of Revenred Hanvoer at the three-quarter pole in 1:21.1. In the stretch, Artspeak quickly erased Reverend Hanover's lead and paced by the leader with powerful strides to score an impressive 2¼ length victory in a Stakes Record time of 1:48.2. Reverend Hanover held on to finish second, while Split The House and The Wayfaring Man finished third and fourth, respectively. Artspeak, who was last year's two-year-old champion, came into Saturday night with three victories from 11 starts on the season, but most recently turned in a strong 1:50.1 qualifying mile at Mohawk on September 4. "I felt in the post parade that he was back to the way he started this year," said Zeron following the race. "He was aggressive and Tony did a great job prepping him for this race. "He had a couple weeks off and he qualified here in (1):50 and when I was racing here full-time that was a big mile qualifying." The son of Western Ideal came first up to score the victory Saturday and Zeron was very impressed with the effort. "I knew he was ready to rock tonight, doing a first-up trip like that, that was steep and to finish the way he did, it was amazing." Artspeak is owned by Brittany Farms, Marvin Katz, Joe Sbrocco and In The Gym Partners. The three-year-old colt now has four wins and over $500,000 earned this season. A $100,000 yearling purchase at the Lexington Selected Sale, Artspeak's career totals currently sit at 12 wins and over $1.3 million in earnings. The Alagna trainee returned $4.80 to win. Artspeak L A Delight makes it nine straight in Champlain CAMPBELLVILLE, September 12 - L A Delight continued her dominance in the Champlain Filly Stakes Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack. Just a single division was needed for the Champlain Filly Stakes, as a field of nine competed for a rich purse of $241,380. One week after capturing the Shes A Great Lady Stakes, L A Delight returned to Mohawk and put on another impressive display. L A Delight, the 1/9 favourite, was sent to the front by driver Randy Waples and touched down on the lead at the opening-quarter in :26.4. It was game over from there, as the Bob McIntosh trainee cruised through fractions of :55.2 and 1:24, before waving goodbye to her rivals and drawing off for a 4½ length victory in 1:52.1. "She's just getting more professional every week," said McIntosh following the race. "I just feel lucky to have her and when you breed these things and they turn out like this, it's just extra special." A daughter of Bettor's Delight, L A Delight has now won nine consecutive starts after dropping her career debut. She is owned and bred by Robert McIntosh Stables Inc., C S X Stables and Al McIntosh Holdings Inc. Good Will Hanover finished second, while Ivy League was third. L A Delight has now banked over $500,000 this season and a $2 win ticket Saturday night on the star filly returned $2.30. Following the race, McIntosh confirmed that L A Delight will race in an Ontario Sires Stakes Gold leg before finishing her season in the Super Final. The OSS Super Finals will take place on Saturday, October 10 at Woodbine Racetrack. L A Delight Ontario sired colts take Champlain divisions CAMPBELLVILLE, September 12 - Betting Line and Nvestment Bluechip scored victories in the Champlain Stakes for two-year-old pacers Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack. Over $100,000 was on the line in each division, as 16 rookie pacing colts and gelding competed. Control The Moment, this year's Metro Pace champion, was suppose to headline the $117,407 first division Saturday, but the Brad Maxwell trainee was a late scratch due to sickness. Casie Coleman trainee Betting Line, who finished second to Control The Moment in the Metro, took full advantage of the scratch to the favourite. Driven by Steve Condren, Betting Line was able to drop in fifth in the early stages, as the lead changed hand several times through opening fractions of :26.3 and :55.2. Around the final turn, Betting Line came to the outside for Condren and tried to catch the cover of Racing Hill, but the Coleman trainee struggled to keep up and sat _ lengths off the leader Nocturnal Bluechip turning for home. In the stretch, Nocturnal Bluechip and Racing Hill went toe-to-toe and it appeared the race would come down to the pair, but Betting Line was able to straight things out and charge by the leaders with a wicked rush late to win by 1¾ lengths in 1:52. Nocturnal Bluechip finished second, while Inspiration View got through late to grab third from Racing Hill. A son of Bettors Delight, Betting Line has now won five of eight starts for earnings of over $325,000. Following the race, Coleman noted that her trainee was on the right line and will be visiting the vet Monday to address an issue. Betting Line has found success on the Ontario Sires Stakes circuit this season and that is where Coleman has him aimed for next. "There's a Gold here (Mohawk) the next Tuesday (September 22) and if he's ready I'll probably take him there," said Coleman. "I'll probably skip Flamboro and then Super Finals and he's also in the Breeders Crown." Betting Line is owned by West Wins Stable, Christine Calhoun and Mac Nichol. The son of Bettors Delight paid $3 to win. Betting Line Jody Jamieson worked out a perfect trip to allow Nvestment Bluechip to capture the $115,906 second division. A son of Shadow Play, Nvestment Bluechip charged out to the front and took the field by the opening-panel in :27. Voracity, the 3/5 favourite, made a second-quarter brush from fourth to take command at the half in :56. Voracity turned up the tempo in the third-quarter in :27.4, as Kokanee Seelster pressed at him first-over. In the stretch, Voracity tried to pace away to victory, but Jamieson brought Nvestment Bluechip off his back and the son of Shadow Play paced on by for the victory in 1:52.1. New Talent made a late rush to finish a length and a half back in second, while Sossys King Kong finished third ahead of Voracity. Nvestment Bluechip is trained by Dave Menary and the conditioner said things went exactly as planned Saturday night. "It kind of went like I thought it was going to go," said Menary. "The colt had a really good week and I've always been pretty high on the colt and tonight we got paid for it." Menary Racing Inc., Michael Guerriero, Denis Breton and Thomas Kyron share ownership of Nvestment Bluchip, who now has three wins from seven starts this season. The rookie pacing colt has banked over $160,000 for his connections. Nvestment Bluechip paid $8.20 to win. Nvestment Bluechip Mark McKelvie
CAMPBELLVILLE, September 4 - The Metro Pace has consistently been the biggest race for harness racing two-year-old pacers in the sport. Each Labour Day weekend, the top two-year-old pacers from different states and provinces converge on Mohawk Racetrack for the richest race for freshmen. Over the years, the Metro Pace champion has quickly stamped himself as the top rookie pacer. This year, the Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) has a big chance to be home of the top rookie pacer in harness racing. A group of four OSS competitors will compete in the ten-horse $685,000 Metro Pace Saturday night. Voracity and Betting Line have both won multiple OSS Gold events this season and last Saturday both proved to be Grand Circuit contenders with victories in their respective Metro eliminations. A son of Sportswriter, Voracity won divisions of the first two Gold events, before finishing second by a nose at Rideau. The Tony Alagna trainee rebounded with a victory in the Nassagaweya heading into his Metro elimination. Through the first five starts of his career, Voracity has shown versatility that has impressed his conditioner. "I think that's the true test of any great horse is that they have versatility where they can leave off the switch and they can come right back off the next week," said Alagna, following Voracity's Metro elimination. "These horses have to be versatile now a days because it's a speed game and they have to be able to start and stop at a seconds notice." Voracity is out of the second-crop of Sportswriter, who cleaned up last season in the OSS and appears to be on pace for another solid season thanks in large part to the Alagna trainee. Voracity will be looking for his fifth win from six starts Saturday and he enters the Metro the highest earning two-year-old pacing colt in the sport with over $170,000 banked. Casie Coleman trainee Betting Line also has two victories this season in Gold events. The son of Bettor's Delight has four victories from six starts and will be meeting Voracity for the first time in the Metro Pace. Coleman, who trained Sportswriter, is excited to see his offspring performing at the highest level, but she is confident in her son of Bettors Delight. "(Voracity) is a Sportswriter colt and I was real excited to see a Sportswriter win a Metro elim and he was very impressive," said Coleman, last Saturday. "I've been real happy with everything (Betting Line's) done so far, he's a really talented colt." Bettors Delight is currently in his first season in the OSS after many years as one of the top sires in New York. Betting Line's early-season success has made a major impact for Bettors Delight in the Ontario market. Bettors Delight will also be represented by Jimmy Takter trainee Cruise Patrol in Saturday's rich contest. Cruise Patrol has yet to win a race in seven starts, but Takter is no stranger to a Metro upset, having won the 2011 edition with Simply Business at 20/1. Nvestment Bluechip, a son of Shadow Play, is the fourth and final OSS competitor in the field. The Dave Menary trainee won a division of the first Gold event this season and finished third by just half a length in his Metro elimination. Nvestment Bluechip, who has a record of two wins from five starts, impressed his conditioner training down, convincing his connections to pay him up to the Metro and other Grand Circuit events. "He was kind of my favourite colt all winter," said Menary. "His schedule he doesn't have to leave Canada, but it still gives him a little bit of opportunity to step up." Although Nvestment Bluechip will face his toughest challenge this Saturday, Menary believes the tasks will be tough all season in the OSS. "It is (a deep group). He's been lucky so far, but there are a lot of good colts and hopefully he can have a little more luck going to the end of the year." Voracity and Betting Line have been installed as the second and third choice on the morning line for Saturday's final at 3/1 and 7/2, respectively. Nvestment Bluechip and Cruise Patrol may be long shots on the morning line, but it was just a few years ago that Ontario sired colt Boomboom Ballykeel scored a 10/1 upset in the 2013 Metro. The 2015 Metro Pace will go forward as the Seventh Race Saturday evening at approximately 9:17 p.m. Here is the full field for the Metro Pace. 1. The Catamount Kid by Well Said, Jody Jamieson, Carl Jamieson, 10-1 2. Betting Line by Bettor's Delight, Steve Condren, Casie Coleman, 7-2 3. Voracity by Sportswriter, Sylvain Filion, Tony Alagna, 3-1 4. Control The Moment by Well Said, Randy Waples, Brad Maxwell, 9-5 5. Racing Hill by Roll With Joe, Doug McNair, Tony Alagna, 8-1 6. Nvestment Bluechip by Shadow Play, James MacDonald, Dave Menary, 15-1 7. Pretty Boy Hill by Somebeachsomewhere, Matt Kakaley, Ron Burke, 15-1 8. Ideal Rocky by Rocknroll Hanover, John Campbell, John Butenschoen, 12-1 9. Cruise Patrol by Bettor's Delight, Brett Miller, Jimmy Takter, 20-1 10. American Passport by American Ideal, Scott Zeron, Tony Alagna, 15-1 Mark McKelvie -30- Mark McKelvie WEG Communications - Standardbred Work - (416) 675-7223) x4367 Cell - (905) 864-9110 @MohawkMarkM P Please consider the environment before printing this email. - Proud Member of Imagine Canada, achieving Caring Company Status - Recycling Council of Ontario's Platinum Waste Minimization Award - Quality ERA Gold Award winner for continuous improvements This e-mail and any attachments may contain confidential and privileged information. If you are not the intended recipient, please notify the sender immediately by return e-mail, delete this e-mail and destroy any copies. 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Trois-Rivieres, Quebec - Mr Mach Jimmy did not disappoint any of his harness racing fans Sunday at the Hippodrome 3R as the two-year-old gelding scored his third straight victory in the $200,000 Quebec-Bred Series. It was the third and final preliminary round of the series and now Mr Mach Jimmy will return next Sunday for his $65,000 divisional final and he will be the betting favorite, despite what post position he draws. Competing in one of three divisions Sunday, Mr Mach Jimmy started from the rail for driver Pascal Berube and trainer Dany Fontaine and led from start to finish, winning by three and one-half lengths in 1:59. Co-favorite, YS Artistic Fella (Stephane Brosseau) made a break right at the start of the race. That was the fastest of the three divisions Sunday. Sagawi (Francis Picard) was second after leaving hard to the lead early and then by the opening quarter mile, had the two-hold trip behind Mr Mach Jimmy. Shanghai Warrior (Clarke Steacy) was third. Owned by Ecurie Gaetan Bono, Inc. of Montreal, it was a lifetime mark for Mr Mach Jimmy, a son of Mach Three. He paid $4.00 to win. The second colt division saw 1/5 wagering favorite Pudong Phil and driver Clarke Steacy get a scare at the three-quarters before scoring an eight and three-quarter length romp in 1:59.2. Going right to the lead from post two, Pudong Phil had only Power Fun (Stephane Brosseau) sitting on his back and no pressure on the outside until after the half mile marker in a mild 1:01. It was then that Chummy Park and Denis St Pierre made it a race by coming first-over. Chummy Park kept grinding it out and by the three-quarters in 1:30.1, had collared pacesetter Pudong Phil and looked him right in the eye. But all Steacy had to do was lift the lines and Pudong Phil shot away from the field to win in a romp. EY Cowboy (Stephane Gendron) was second with HO Patriote (Louis Phillipe Roy) third. It was the maiden victory in three lifetime starts for Pudong Phil. The son of Sportswriter is trained by Mark Steacy for owner/breeder Hudson Standardbred Stable, Inc. of Hudson, QC. He paid $2.40 to win. The lone filly division saw a mild upset as the Â¼ favorite, Miss Babe Delight (Mario Ballargeon), was nipped at the wire by Art De Gagnee (Mario Charron) by a nose in 2:00.2. It was all Miss Babe Delight leading most of the entire race with Art De Gagnee sitting on their back until the stretch drive where Charron sent Art De Gagnee into the passing lane and the daughter of Shadow Play used the live cover the entire mile to her advantage. HP Mercedes (Louis Phillipe Roy) was third. It was the second win in six starts for Art De Gagnee. She paid $11.60 to win for trainer Maxime Velaye and owner/breeder Guy Corbell of Mirabel, QC. Track Notes: Live racing resumes at the Hippodrome 3R on Wednesday, post time 7:00 pm. Next Sunday, September 6, will be the richest day of racing at 3R this year with the $500,000 finals of the Quebec-Bred Series for two and three-year-old trotters and pacers. Each of the eight divisional races will compete for a purse of $65,000. For more information, free race programs and live video/replays visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club
CAMPBELLVILLE, August 28 - When making an "Nvestment", every dollar counts. Trainer Dave Menary expects to see it pay off as he sends out Nvestment Bluechip in the Metro Pace eliminations on Saturday night. "He was a very handsome colt at the sale, he was Ontario Sired and I really liked his pedigree," said Menary. "He stood out, really handsome and we got him at a good price." A $40,000 purchase at the Harrisburg Yearling Sale, owners Menary Racing Inc., Michael Guerriero, Denis Breton and Thomas Kyron have seen their colt bankroll nearly $100,000 so far. The first foal out of Hazes Zure Bet, he has picked up where she left off in the speed department. Getting off to a rocky start in her two-year-old season, she turned a corner late in the year to set up a successful sophomore campaign. Picking up a mark of 1:54.4 at Saratoga, she went on to show speed of 1:52 over Vernon Downs in New York Sires Stakes action. Bred to Shadow Play by breeders Blue Chip Bloodstock Inc., she dropped a foal in early January 2013 who would grow up to become Menary's next pacing star. Having campaigned Hes Watching, the small but mighty son of American Ideal who set an all-age world record of 1:46.4 in the Meadowlands Pace last year, he has large shoes to fill. "This winter, breaking them and starting to train, he's been my favourite. He's been a real professional from day one. He trained down excellent, started to go real fast and now he takes care of himself. He used to be a flashy trainer, now he's not so much of a flashy trainer anymore. Now he waits for the big dance to show his speed." With four starts so far in his freshman campaign, Nvestment Bluechip has posted two wins, both in Ontario Sires Stakes Gold events. Setting a mark of 1:53.1 in his pari-mutuel debut, he has shown consistent speed with fast early fractions. Though Menary chose to bypass the Nassagaweya Stakes, which acted as a final prep for many of the horses entered, his trainee will head into Saturday off a victory at Rideau Carleton Raceway on August 13. "I'd like to see more speed out of him, but so far everything has been moving in the right direction. He has more in the tank; it's just a matter of time. A driver can do pretty much whatever they want with him on the track, he's versatile." With twenty-three rookie pacers set to go in the Metro Pace eliminations, Nvestment Bluechip will start from post position eight in the first of three 'Metro' events. He will be looking to finish on the board, the top three securing a spot in the final next week. The field will be rounded out with one fourth place finisher, drawn by lot. "I would have like to be inside, it's an uphill battle starting from way out there, but hopefully we're good enough this week to come back again next week. You have to be in it to win it, I was on the fence about entering him in the Metro and he's proven that he deserves the opportunity." For now, Menary hopes the next stake engagement for Nvestment Bluechip will be the final on September 5. He is looking ahead to the Champlain, the Ontario Sires Stakes Superfinal and the Breeders Crown which returns to Canadian soil this year. "He's one of the Sires Stakes point leaders with two Gold wins, so we'll have the Superfinal and a few other options outside of Sires Stakes as the year goes on. We're playing it by ear as he progresses." The most coveted 'Crown' of all, the Breeders Crown races act as the grand finale to each stake season. Set to take place at Woodbine Racetrack in October, every trainer, owner and driver hopes to be there with the horse to beat. "We need to finish the Sires Stakes and see how he makes it through all of that before the Breeders Crown. It's a nice option to have and a nice horse to have it with." Saturday is set to be a pacing affair at Mohawk Racetrack, with two Shes A Great Lady eliminations for two-year-old fillies on the card in addition to the Metro Pace. There will also be two eliminations for the highly anticipated Canadian Pacing Derby. The first race goes to post at 7:25 p.m. Hannah Beckett, for WEG Communications
In the last few weeks Harnesslink has begun to update all of our stallion reviews on the Stallion Sphere. Even though it is only twelve months since we did the initial stallion reviews, the changes in the statistics is quite pronounced with the four stallions we have updated to date. Mach Three is a good example with the son of Matts Scooter having added over $15,000,000 to his bankroll in that time. He has also added a couple more millionaires on the card in that period and all of a sudden the statistics from twelve months ago look terribly outdated. That is often the way with the more established stallions who once they have reached the elite level at stud tend to get overlooked a bit with the emphasis mostly centered on newer stallions trying to get established. The statistics we updated for the other three stallions had changed just as much. Somebeachsomewhere continues to be the benchmark as a stallion with his first crop closing in on $19,000,000, which is an increase of nearly $6,000,000 in twelve months. Shadow Play and Sportswriter are two young sires we have updated and again the changes in their averages and percentages are quite significant. Both have made big strides in the last twelve months and the extent of that change did surprise us. Harnesslink has two more updates on stallions in the next issue of Insider Access which is free to Harnesslink followers as long as you have signed up to receive it. You can do so by signing up below; Sign up to "Insider Access" Full Name Email Subscribe
The Race to Royalty hots up this Saturday Night when we head off to the harness racing meeting at Bray Raceway in Ballarat for all the Semi-Finals of the Australasian Breeders Crown. Its shapes up as a fabulous night of racing as Harness Racing’s brightest young stars take centre stage. As has been the norm over the past couple of years it shapes as another fascinating Australia vs New Zealand war and leading the charge for the locals is none other than Emma Stewart. She has 7 runners across the semi-finals and the outstanding Whereibylong in the Graduate free for all. The first of their runners in the Semi’s is Celebrity Guest in Race 2, she has drawn awkwardly outside of the back row. Speaking to trainer Emma’s Partner Clayton Tonkin he said that she might face a task ask from where she is drawn “she has a nice turn of foot and she is a nice little filly but she sort of needed a bit better barrier draw to be in the mix.” The brilliant filly Heavens Trend and Whirily School go around in Race 3 and they come up against a unbeaten super Kiwi from the All-Stars stable in Our Dream about Me. It should be a cracking race but Tonkin, although wary of Our Dream About Me, is confident Heavens Trend will be hard to beat. “The NZ horse has massive wraps and is a super filly, but our filly is as good a filly as we’d hope and we have the barrier draw over them which makes it an advantage but it will be a good test.” Whirily School has drawn awkwardly and Tonkin thinks that will make the job pretty tough, “she has done a good job this season but I think against these sorts of fillies she needed a bit better barrier draw but she will still run a good race” Their next runner on a massive night for the stable is Starburst Girl in the 3yo fillies division. Drawn gate 4 up against last year’s 2yo winner Katy Perry, Tonkin is quietly confident she can run a nice race. “She is going good actually, she has had a big season and has a good turn of foot, she hasn’t got a bad barrier draw and I think she will run a pretty good race.” The 1st semi of the 2yo C&Gs series sees the Vicbred winner Shadow Sax take on Born to RocknRoll and Tonkin has been highly impressed with this son of Shadow Play and nominates him as the pick of the night. "“I really like him as a horse, he hasn’t drawn real good but he is a great racehorse, he can go forward driven tough, you can drive him with a sit as he is real versatile." "I think he will go really good and I reckon he is our best hope for the night” In Race 8 the Mares Graduate Free For All and Whereibylong will be mighty hard to beat. A winner of the 2yo fillies division of the Breeders Crown two seasons ago she has gradually got better at each of her 3 runs back from a long spell and was quite awesome winning all the way last start. “She has 3 runs back now to sharpen her up, she has another good draw over the mile so makes it a big advantage but she is getting back to where she needs to be.” In the last of the Semis Stewart has 2 fillies engaged with Tonkin clearly heading towards Lovelist as his better chance but concedes both his runners will find it a hard ask taking on the New Zealand superstar Our Orange Agent. “Lovelist has a good barrier draw so if she can find the back of the good NZ horse hopefully she weighs in and The Stunning One has come back from a long spell where she had an injury but she is going to be right up against it from where she is drawn” Other highlights of the night include the NZ star Our Waikiki Beach trying it make it 11 straight in Race 4 at 7.02pm and the clash of Menin Gate and Follow the Stars in Race 7 at 8.30pm. It will be a bumper night and the first of 10 kicks off at 5.27pm. Matthew Jackson
Yearlings by many of the world’s greatest sires will go up for auction at the Shepparton Mixed Sale, to be held at the Shepparton Racing Complex on Sunday September 6. The 18-strong yearling contingent features yearlings by 14 different sires headed up by champion sire Mach Three and leading trotting sire Majestic Son, as well as Modern Art, Shadow Play (3 lots), Artistic Fella, Jet Laag, Village Jolt (3 lots), Major In Art, Tell All and Mister Big. Several exciting, young sires will be represented by their first crop and they include USA 2YO of the Year Big Jim, the $1.6million winner Betterthancheddar, dual NZ Horse of the Year Auckland Reactor and NZ 2YO of the Year Smiling Shard. The catalogue comprises youngsters out of 2:00 winning mares and 2:00 winner producers. There’s colts out of the former 3YO Filly of the Year Yeronga Songbird, Melbourne winners Room With A View (1:56) and Our Favourite Girl, Got The Gold (6 wins) and Closetomyheart (Tr 2:04.2) and fillies from the USA Stakes winner Out Of Sight 1:52.4 ($200,142), the NSW Oaks placegetter Lahaini (1:57.5) and the Melton winner Kiss And Fly (1:58.4). The sale also highlights half-sisters to *The Youthful Stakes winner Vista Bella 1:57.9 ($110,021) *The smart racemares Twirling ($105,707) and Golden Grinder 1:55.6 ($90,340) * Half-brothers to the Moonee Valley winner Stormwarning, Boston Yankee (1:56.6) and The Lombo heat winner Rosemay. For a catalogue or further information contact Shepparton Harness Racing Club manager Ian McDonald on phone 0428 231 403 or email email@example.com Pedigrees can be downloaded from the website www.sheppartonhrc.com.au Click on the News link. Pedigrees are also available on the Shepparton HRC Facebook page. Peter Wharton
Rideau Carleton Raceway fans were treated to six outstanding battles by the two-year-old pacing colts at the harness racing meeting on Thursday as the province's best Grassroots and Gold Series competitors brought their "A" game to the Ottawa oval. The Grassroots colts kicked things off in Race 3 and Sporty Mercedes set the tone for the evening, ringing up a :27.4 quarter, :57 half and 1:25.1 three-quarters and then battling favourite Vegas Dream all the way to the wire to score a neck victory in 1:55.1. Shadows Pro was well back in third. The win was Sporty Mercedes' first in three Grassroots appearances. "He raced tough," said Guelph, ON resident McNair of Sporty Mercedes. "They liked him early and he got a little pouty, so they gelded him. He seems to be much better." McNair piloted the Sportswriter son to the win for trainer Blake MacIntosh of Waterdown, ON and his partners Dan and Kim Sergeant of Straffordville, ON. In six starts Sporty Mercedes now has two wins and one second for earnings of $14,840. The win was one of two for McNair, who also piloted the winner of the first Gold Series division. Starting from Post 5 the reinsman hustled Nvestment Bluechip out to an early lead and then allowed Voracity to take control before the :28 quarter. Inspiration View went to the front before the :57.2 half and the colts continued to sit one, two, three en route to the 1:25.2 three-quarters. Randy Waples elected to tip Voracity to the outside to challenge Inspiration View, so McNair opted for the passing lane and the colts stormed under the wire in a crowd. After careful review Nvestment Bluechip was determined to have a scant nose in front of Voracity, and Matchplay Hanover was three-quarters of a length back in third. "He was still pacing halfway down the lane, but so was Randy's horse." "I didn't think I could catch him," said McNair. "I still didn't think I won after the race." The win was McNair's first appearance in Nvestment Bluechip's race bike and the driver -- last year's leader in the Ontario Sires Stakes program -- was impressed with the Dave Menary trainee. "He dug in tough to win," said the driver. "He's a smart colt, very relaxed." The win was Nvestment Bluechip's second in Gold Series action. The Shadow Play son also captured his division in the July 11 season opener at Mohawk Racetrack for owners Menary Racing Inc. of Rockton, ON, Michael Guerriero of Puslinch, ON, Denis Breton of Welland, ON and Thomas Kyron of Toronto, ON. The other $105,000 Gold division at Rideau Carleton on Thursday went to Semi Automatic, who also arrived in the winner's circle by way of the passing lane. Starting from Post 2 driver James MacDonald landed the colt on the rail in second behind pacesetter Heavymetal Hanover and followed that colt through fractions of :26.4, :56.2 and 1:24.2 before bursting through in the stretch and accelerating away to a two length victory in 1:54. Heavymetal Hanover settled for second and Stonebridge Beach was third. "The horse was amazing tonight," said Guelph, ON resident MacDonald. "I got a good helmet to follow and the horse did the rest." Puslinch resident Tony O'Sullivan conditions Semi Automatic for his partners Let It Ride Stables Inc. of Boca Raton, FL and J And T Silva Stables LLC of Long Beach, NY. In five starts the Badlands Hanover gelding now has two wins, one second and one third, with his other victory coming in elimination action for the Battle Of Waterloo at Grand River Raceway on July 27. The quickest mile of the four Grassroots divisions was clocked by Blue Zombie, whose 1:54.2 score salvaged an otherwise unprofitable evening for driver Tim Tetrick and trainer Casie Coleman. Coleman asked the New Jersey-based Tetrick to make the trip north to steer two Gold Series colts and Blue Zombie, but both Betting Line and A Bettors Risk made breaks in their respective Gold divisions. Blue Zombie however, dominated the fourth Grassroots split, firing straight to the front from Post 2 and laying down fractions of :28, :57.1 and 1:25.3 on his way to a five and one-half length win in 1:54.2. Kokanee Seelster and Azul Pool rounded out the top three. "He gets better every start, so we are really happy with him every week right now," said Coleman, adding that the colt is being prepped for the Metro Pace Eliminations at Mohawk Racetrack on August 29. The Cambridge, ON resident shares ownership of Blue Zombie with her partners in the West Wins Stable of Cambridge and Adriano Sorella of Milton, ON. In four starts the Bettors Delight gelding now has two wins and one third, all in Grassroots action. The other Grassroots trophies went home with St Lads Moonwalk and Secrecy. St Lads Moonwalk sprinted down the stretch to a one-half length victory in 1:56 in the second division, besting fan favourite Print Media and Bingo Ingo. The Mach Three son was piloted to his first lifetime win by Campbellville, ON resident Mike Saftic for owner-trainer Jack Darling of Cambridge. Secrecy and driver Sylvain Filion of Milton took command heading for the three-quarter pole and never glanced back, cruising home one and one-quarter length winners over Continual Hanover and Day Trade Hanover. The Mach Three gelding's first lifetime win was clocked in 1:55.3. Eric Adams conditions Secrecy for Millar Farms of Newmarket, ON. The Gold Series competitors now have a six and one-half week break in their Ontario Sires Stakes schedule, while the Grassroots colts make their fourth start at Georgian Downs on August 23. Ontario Sires Stakes excitement continues at Rideau Carleton Raceway this Sunday on OSS Family Fun Night, featuring four Grassroots divisions for the two-year-old trotting fillies and a host of fun-filled activities for families. Ontario Horse Racing