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Captain Video blew away five harness racing stakes foes to win the $35,000 Valedictory Pacing Series final at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Friday, Apr. 2.   Sylvain Filion deployed the four-year-old stallion to the front end, and they led through the opening quarter in :28. One-to-five favourite Beyond Bettor (Trevor Henry) stormed up approaching the half in :56, but Filion parked him out.   Captain Video retained the lead going to three-quarters in 1:23 and blasted away as the field came down the lane, extending his margin to six and a quarter lengths by the time he crossed the finish line victorious in 1:51.2. Beyond Bettor stayed on for place, and Bee Two Bee (Scott Coulter) grabbed third.   CAPTAIN VIDEO REPLAY     Captain Video, a son of Captaintreacherous, has now won 11 races from 22 starts and surpassed the $100,000 earnings mark with the win. Richard Moreau trains for 1876472 Ontario Inc of Guelph, Ecurie CSL of Boynton Beach, Visionary Breeders LLC of Manalapan, and Joseph Di Scala of Somers.   The horse paid $8.20 to win. The Valedictory Series was open to three and four-year-old colts and geldings. Its first two legs were contested in December 2020, but the final was postponed due to a Covid-19-related shutdown of racing.   Rose Run Victory captured the other stakes final on the night, sweeping by opponents late in the $35,000 Niagara Pacing Series conclusion.   She took back and dropped into sixth at the behest of driver Ed Hensley, riding along through a first split of :28. Hensley moved her into the flow going to the half in :57.3. She ended up third-over, and Hensley remained patient past the three-quarters in 1:26.2, only swinging the mare wide for her move as the field entered the stretch.   The four-year-old mare made little headway through the first half of the stretch, but she found another gear in the final eighth and rolled by four foes to win by three quarters of a length in 1:54.2. She outkicked her cover of Man Dontforget Me (Doug McNair), who was second; Filter Hanover (Jody Jamieson) was third.   ROSE RUN VICTORY REPLAY     Rose Run Victory improved her record to 10-for-39 lifetime and her bankroll to $166,491. Ashleigh Hensley trains for Burke Racing Stable LLC of Fredericktown, Weaver Bruscemi LLC of Canonsburg, and Phillip Collura of Mountain Top. The four-year-old by Shadow Play paid $2.70 to win.   Rose Run Victory swept the Niagara Series, the first two legs of which were also held in December 2020.   So Much More, Canada's 2020 Older Pacing Mare of the Year, took the $30,000 Preferred Handicap for aged distaffers.   Driver James MacDonald sent her to the front for the first time this season, and they led through the quarter in :27.3, half in :55.4, and three-quarters in 1:24.3. Ivana Flybye N (Jody Jamieson) pressured from first-over, but So Much More was solid and held off all challengers to win by a length and a half in 1:51.4.   Major Occasion A (Bob McClure) rode the pocket for place, and Ivana Flybye N got third. A correct $2 win ticket returned $5.60.   SO MUCH MORE REPLAY     So Much More has now racked up 33 wins and just shy of $600,000 in her 70-race career. Don Beatson of Granton trains and co-owns the five-year-old Big Jim mare with Kenneth Beatson of Palgrave and Cole England of Exeter.   This will likely be Woodbine Mohawk Park's final card for at least four weeks as Ontario will move into lockdown as of 12:01 a.m. EDT on Saturday, Apr. 3.   For full race results, click here.   by Nicholas Barnsdale, for Harnesslink

Tymal Tarot's made three moves in the conditioned feature harness racing trot at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Thursday, Apr. 1, the last of which got him to the line first.   His first effort was pushing out to a short-lived early lead as Heaven (Scott Young) drove on to grab front-end control through the first panel in :27.3. Driver Sylvain Filion then sent Tymal Tarot quickly back around as they straightened onto the backstretch, but Tymal Riggs (James MacDonald) pulled out behind him and vaulted to the lead.   Tymal Tarot remained in the pocket through the half in :57.3 and three-quarters in 1:27.2 as Hp Starlette (Louis-Philippe Roy) provided the leader with first-over pressure. Tymal Tarot swung to the outside in the stretch and accelerated by the top two with mild urging from Filion to take the lead -- permanently this time -- and win by three quarters of a length in 1:56.2.   Hp Starlette was a game second, and Tymal Riggs held the show spot. The $2 win payoff was $5.60.   TYMAL TAROT REPLAY     Tymal Tarot is a four-year-old Kadabra gelding. He's now two-for-29 lifetime with more than $40,000 earned for Rod Hughes of Rockwood, who also trains. Filion had a driving triple on the evening.   Woodbine Mohawk Park will return on Friday, Apr. 2. with an 11-race program that includes the finals of the Valedictory Pacing Series and Niagara Pacing Series. That card, which starts at 7:00 p.m. EDT, could be the track's last for four weeks, as the province of Ontario will move into lockdown starting on Apr. 3.   For full race results, click here.   by Nicholas Barnsdale, for Harnesslink  

MILTON, March 22, 2021 - Sylvain Filion put on a driving clinic Monday at Woodbine Mohawk Park, winning six races on the 11-race card. Filion's most notable victories during his massive night occurred in the $34,400 Wine & Roses Series Final with Sheswildnfree ($2.90) and the $34,000 Preferred Trot with Zig Zag ($10.40). Both winners were trained by Ben Baillargeon, who sent out a total of three winners on the card. Filion also teamed with trainer Richard Moreau for two of his six wins, guiding claiming pacer Cool Rock to victory and three-year-old pacer Bettim Again ($2.90), a Pepsi North America Cup eligible making his season debut. The other two victories on the evening came with three-year-old trotting filly Hope So ($2.90) for trainer Bob McIntosh and four-year-old pacer Bluemoon Bayama ($2.20) for trainer Jean Tourigny. A resident of Milton, Ontario, Filion entered Monday's card loaded with power and took full advantage. His six wins puts him first in the Woodbine driver's standings for 2021 with 32 wins. Filion was also the last driver to win six races on a card at Mohawk Park, posting the "double hat-trick" on July 17, 2019. Drivers Bob McClure and Doug McNair also had six wins on a card earlier in 2019. Live racing resumes Thursday evening at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Post time is 7 p.m. For full race results, click here. by Mark McKelvie, for Woodbine Communications        

MILTON, March 22, 2021 - Better late than never, Woodbine Mohawk Park played host to the Wine & Roses and Family Day Trotting Series finals on Monday night. Originally scheduled for February 15, the winter series were pushed back to March due to the province-wide lockdown. Both finals featured a pair of preliminary legs ahead of Monday's added money finals. Sheswildnfree rebounded from a miscue in leg two to score a decisive 4¼ length victory in the $34,400 Wine & Roses Trotting Series final. Sylvain Filion guided the Ben Baillargeon trained four-year-old to the 1:54.2 score. Sent off as the 2/5 favourite, Sheswildnfree flashed early speed along with next door rival Impulse Buy, clearing to command just after a :27.3 opening-quarter. The Baillargeon trainee put the race to bed from there, posting middle-half splits of :57.1 and 1:25.4 before scooting away in the lane for her fourth win in five starts this season. Impulse Buy never relinquished second, while Charlotte Chaplin edged Hp Starlette for third.   SHESWILDNFREE REPLAY     A homebred for Tom & Elizabeth Rankin, Sheswildnfree is a daughter of Muscle Mass with now six wins and $77,158 to her name. The clocking of 1:54.2 is a new career-best. Sheswildnfree returned $2.90 to win. Rjs Invictus capitalized off a perfect second-over steer from driver Bob McClure to win the $35,800 Family Day Trotting Series final at odds of 8-1. The Ray Lowery trainee finished sixth in the first leg and second in last week's second leg. After an early scramble for the top, Franks Angel led the field through middle-half panels of :57.1 and 1:25.4. Meadowbranch Noble came first-up to attack the leader and was on even-terms at the third-marker, while Rjs Invictus and McClure were latched onto that cover ready to pounce. Rjs Invictus claimed the lead with an eighth of a mile to go, but had to fight off a hard-closing Toccoa Falls, who was the 2-1 favourite and closing from seventh turning for home. Rjs Invictus held off the rival by a neck to win in a career-best 1:54.1. Charmbo Prince, who was looking for the series sweep, started from the second-tier and grabbed third after racing sixth throughout. Meadowbranch Noble settled for fourth.   RJS INVICTUS REPLAY     A four-year-old gelding, Rjs Invictus was winless in three starts this season prior to Monday evening. The son of Windsong Espoir now has three wins and $50,899 in career earnings for owner/breeder Russell Lowery. A $2 win ticket on Rjs Invictus returned $19.20. The Wine & Roses and Family Day were open to three and four-year-old trotters, non-winners of $60,000 lifetime as of October 31, 2020. Winter series final action continues later this week with the $40,600 Snowshoe and $40,400 Blizzard finals scheduled for Friday (March 26). by Mark McKelvie, for Woodbine Communications

Woodbine Mohawk Park held the opening legs of two harness racing series on Monday, Mar. 8: the Family Day Trotting Series and the Wine and Roses Trotting Series.   Sheswildnfree captured the only division -- worth $17,000 -- of the Wine and Roses series for three and four-year-old fillies and mares with ease.   Reinsman Sylvain Filion commanded the early lead, urging the 1/9 Sheswildnfree past Impulse Buy (James Macdonald) going past the quarter in 28.4. Fillion then carved out fractions of 58.4 and 1:28.3, and the four-year-old mare needed no encouragement to sprint away from the pack. She won the by three and a half lengths over Impulse Buy, who was second, and Tesla Seelster (Denis St Pierre), who finished third.       Sheswildnfree continued her perfect start to 2021, increasing the win tally to three from three. She's won five dashes from 20 lifetime starts and has now surpassed $55,000 in earnings for owners and breeders Thomas and Elizabeth Rankin of St Catherines. Benoit Baillargeon trains the daughter of Muscle Mass.   Charmbo Prince went wire-to-wire in the first of two $17,000 divisions of the Family Day series for three and four-year-old males.   Mike Saftic hurried that four-year-old gelding off the car, crafting out a two-length advantage past the quarter in 27.4. Saftic then cooled his charge down through the middle splits, taking him to the half in 57.2 and three-quarters in 1:27.1 before first-over pressure arrived in the form of So Long Hanover (Rick Zeron).   He would cease to be a worry, as Charmbo Prince stepped away from him in the stretch. Meadowbranch Noble became the main danger in the late stages, as he advanced off cover and marched on the leader. Charmbo Prince allowed the attacker to reach his saddlepad, but no further, and fought on to win by three quarters of a length in a lifetime-best 1:56. Meadowbranch Noble had to settle for place, and Tesla Seelster held on for third.       That was Charmbo Prince's fourth win from 27 lifetime tries, and it will improve his bankroll to more than $70,000. John Rier of Kitchener trains, co-owns, and co-bred the Royalty for Life gelding with Randy Rier.   The final split of the Family Day series went to a game Franks Angel, who won with a two-move trip.   The four-year-old left hard from post eight under orders from driver Jason Ryan, and they reached the top through the first turn. They hit the quarter in 29.2 and led almost to the halfway point, but an authoritative Doug McNair fired odds-on choice Bronze Yankee out of third, reaching the top just past the half in 59.   Bronze Yankee showed the way to the three-quarters in 1:27.4 and led into the stretch, but 7-1 Franks Angel had upset ideas. Franks Angel gelding initially gained little, but he ate further into the lead with every stride and eventually vanquished Bronze Yankee for a length-and-a-half score in 1:58.4. Archies Star (Louis-Philippe Roy) passed tired foes for second, and Bronze Yankee faded to third.       Franks Angel notched his ninth lifetime win from 32 starts and increased his total earnings to $80,905 in the Mar. 8 victory. Michael Venneri of St Catherines owns the Dagfin Henriksen-trained son of Archangel. The horse paid $16.40 to win.   Also on the card, Camilla Christoforou won in her debut as a trainer with longshot Kameran Hanover in the sixth race. The seven-year-old stallion was buried on the inside, but Camilla's husband, Chris Christoforou, found room in the stretch and urged the horse past four rivals to win by a length and a quarter in 1:55.4.       The son of Donato Hanover took his 17th lifetime victory at 25-1 odds.   For full race results, click here.   by Nicholas Barnsdale, for Harnesslink

Postmodernism and Westbeach blew up the Woodbine Mohawk Park tote board on Friday, Feb. 26 with two late-closing upsets.   Postmodernism went from last to first in the ninth race at 25-1 in an eye-catching move rarely seen in harness racing. With it, she secured the last of three $20,000 feature races and a first victory for new owners.   Driver Bob McClure dropped back with her to eighth at the start and continued to sit near the back through fractions of 27.2, 57, and 1:26.2. The pair pulled fourth-over coming around the far turn as Free Flyin Ticket overtook Sunday Afternoon at the head of the field. McClure fully unleashed Postmodernism at the eighth pole, and she unfurled her metaphorical wings. The five-year-old mare flew home, passing eight horses in the stretch and getting by Sunday Afternoon in the last possible stride to win.       Postmodernism took her fourth lifetime victory from 28 starts and surpassed $50,000 in earnings with the Feb. 26 1:54.2 win. It was also the daughter of American Ideal's first win for trainer Jody McClure and 2729346 Ontario Inc. The mare paid $53.90 to win.   Six races earlier, 22-1 shot Westbeach converted a perfect trip into her first win of the season in the first of three co-features, passing the two favourites in the lane for a big upset.   Driver Sylvain Filion guided her into the pocket early, sitting behind Major League N through fractions of 27.2, 57.2, and 1:25.3. Swift Ally marched up to challenge first-over turning for home. The top two battled into the lane with drivers Ed Hensley and Doug McNair asking their mounts for more. Filion slid Westbeach out mid-stretch, but the five-year-old mare needed every meter of racetrack to get it done. She hit another gear in the final 1/16th and nailed Swift Ally by a head.       Swift Ally was game in second, as was Major League N, who finished third by half a length. The winner paid $47.40.   Westbeach took her first win since November 2020 in 1:52.3. The Sombeachsomewhere mare has now tallied eight wins from 50 starts and earned more than $110,000 lifetime for Lachance Racing Stable and Dragon Racing Inc. Her most recent win comes under the conditioning of trainer Richard Moreau.   Sheswildnfree jogged as expected in the second of the three co-features, scoring by two lenghts with the whip lightly used and the earplugs unpulled.   She tucked in third into the first turn at 1/5, but driver Filion quickly pulled the trigger and sent his mare to the top. She cleared Northern Sultan, who led to the quarter in 28.1 and who moved to the safety lane on the backstretch for an unknown reason. Meadowbranch Noble followed Sheswildnfree into the outside flow but took the pocket after Northern Sultan vacated the rail. Sheswildnfree set a 58.4 half and a 1:28.3 three-quarters with Archies Star providing mild pressure first-over. The leader kicked away with minimal urging from Filion, cruising home for a two-length victory and a new life's mark of 1:56.2.       She's now two-for-two in 2021 for trainer Benoit Baillargeon. The four-year-old mare by Muscle Mass has four wins and more than $50,000 lifetime against her name from 20 lifetime starts. She's owned and was bred by Thomas and Elizabeth Rankin of St. Catherines.   Mohawk is back in action on Saturday, Feb. 27 with a 10-race card.   For full race results, click here.   by Nicholas Barnsdale, for Harnesslink

Sweet Heaven won the N/W $14,500L5 top condition at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Feb. 19, giving the Baillargeon barn a heavenly start to its 2021 harness racing season.   The five-year-old mare quarter-poled from the four-hole in the Friday night feature and rushed to the front. She paced the next half-mile unopposed and resisted a late challenge from Hello Love to earn a winner's circle trip.   Hello Love sprinted out to an early advantage, striking the front entering the first turn. She paced the first quarter in 29.4, and Sylvain Filion simultaneously hit the gas on Sweet Heaven, bringing her out of fourth. Filion seemed to wrestle with the Benoit Baillargeon trainee as the horse cleared to the lead at the half in 57.4.   Sweet Heaven managed a reasonable 1:26.2 third quarter before quickly dispatching first-over challenger Lyons Tilt Hanover. The leader went into a drive and repelled an attack from Hello Love, who mounted a charge in the final eighth. The latter made it to the leader's shoulder, but no further, and finished second by a neck. Rose Run Victory sat behind the top two for much of the contest and slid out late to take the third-place cheque.     Sara Baillargeon, a caretaker for her family's Baillargeon stable, was excited after the mare's win.   "Two starts into 2021 and Team B gets a win," she posted on Facebook after the race. "Heaven takes advantage of class drop, plugs in, jiggy jog."   The daughter of Sweet Lou improves to 11 for 31 lifetime and adds the winner's cut of the $22,000 purse to her previous total earnings of $113,271. She's owned by Benoit Baillargeon, Rick Heinz, and Santo and Nunzio Vena. A $2 win ticket paid $4.   This card was Woodbine Mohawk Park's second since returning from a hiatus caused by the Covid-19 lockdown in Ontario. The Campbellville, Ontario track's next race date is Feb. 20.   For full race results, click here.   by Nicholas Barnsdale, for Harnesslink  

Trois-Rivieres, QC - The Quebec Jockey Club, the only harness racing horsemen's association in North America that is run by horse people and is a not-for-profit group, is hosting the $508,000 Super Sunday in Quebec at the Hippodrome 3R this Sunday. The 12-race program will feature eight championship finals for two and three-year-old trotters and pacers. It is the richest day of horse racing in all of Quebec. The finals for three-year-old's each race for a purse of $65,000 and the two-year-old finals each go for $55,000. There is one final for two-year-old trotting fillies that will be a non-wagering event held after the first race on the card Sunday. Post time for Super Sunday is 1:00 pm and joining the leading drivers at the track, Pascal Berube, Stephane Gendron, Stephane Brosseau and Pierre-Luc Roy, will be two of the top drivers in all of Canada, Sylvain Filion and Louis-Philippe Roy. Both drivers began their careers at the Hippodrome 3R. Filion will be driving two horses that are trained by his father, Hall of Famer Yves Filion, in the finals. They are Celia Bayama (race 7) and Cadillac Bayama (race 9), both of whom are the betting favorites in their respective finals. Filion has a total of five drives in the finals. Louis-Philippe Roy has returned to drive on Super Sunday at the request of his longtime friend, trainer Francis Richard, who has five horses in the finals. They are Genetic Taurus (race 6), Ibiza Panic (race 7), YS Do It Right (race 9), Streakazana (race 10) and HP I Got To Play (race 11). Roy will drive in six of the finals. "It will be nice to see my friends from the track," Roy said. "And I also planned to spend the night in Quebec City with my parents after the races. My good friend Francis (Richard) asked me if I wanted to come and drive all of his horses in the finals, so I thought it would be a good time plan a little trip in Quebec, as I didn't have the chance to go back since Christmas with everything that happened with the Covid." There are two horses who are seeking sweeps of the series and finals. They are Mag N Lady and Acaena De Chakrika. Mag N Lady, a two-year-old trotting filly by Royalty For Life, headlines the non-wagering final. She has won her last three starts, all in the Future Stars Series for trainer-driver and co-owner Jean Francois Maguire of Ontario. In her last start, Mag N Lady set a track record with an amazing 1:59.2 victory, becoming the first two-year-old ever at H3R to trot under 2:00. Acaena De Chakrika goes from post 5 in the 10th race for driver Stephane Brosseau. The filly by Sunshine Beach was last year's two-year-old filly champion. This year she has swept all three preliminary legs, the fastest a lifetime mark of 1:56.4 for trainer Dany Fontaine and owner-breeder Diane Lepine of Quebec City. For a free race program for Super Sunday in Quebec, visit www.hippodrome3r.ca. From the Quebec Jockey Club

Trois-Rivieres, QC - Two of the best harness racing drivers in North America, Sylvain Filion and Louis-Philippe Roy, are returning to the Hippodrome 3R this Sunday to compete in the $480,000 Quebec Championship Finals. It is Super Sunday in Quebec with finals being held for the trotters and pacers in the Breeders Trophy Series and Future Stars Series. The are four Breeders Trophy Finals for the three-year-old's, each with a purse of $65,000 and four Future Stars Finals for the two-year-old's, each with a purse of $55,000. Super Sunday is the richest day of horse racing in all of Quebec. The Hippodrome 3R is where both Sylvain Filion and Louis-Philippe Roy began their harness racing careers. Both drivers are now standouts on the WEG (Woodbine Entertainment Group) Circuit in Ontario. "I will be there next Sunday for sure," said Filion, who had raced earlier this month at H3R, driving his father, Yves Filion, horse's in the Future Stars Series. "I always like coming back to drive at H3R." Yves Filion and his Bayama Farms have two top two-year-old pacing colts in Future Stars Final, Cadillac Bayama and Colonel Bayama. Cadillac Bayama will be driven by Filion. Bayama Farms will also have Celia Bayama in the Future Stars Final for the fillies. Filion has had five drives at H3R this season with three wins, one second and one third place finish. His Universal Driving Rating (batting average) UDR is an impressive .600. For Roy, it will be the first time that he has driven at H3R this season. "It will be nice to see my friends from the track," LPR said. "And I also planned to spend the night in Quebec City with my parents after the races. "My good friend Francis Richard asked me if I wanted to come and drive all of his horses in the finals," LPR explained. "So, I thought it would be a good time to plan a little trip in Quebec, as I didn't have the chance to go back since Christmas with everything that happened with the Covid." Both Filion and Roy know they are coming back to their home track and facing some tough drivers. The meets leader, Pascal Berube, sports a UDR of .401, Stephane Gendron has a UDR of .400 and Stephane Brosseau, Pierre-Luc Roy (LPR's older brother), Francis Picard, Steeven Genois and the youngster, Samuel Fillion (LPR's brother-in-law), are all top-class drivers. The draw for post positions for Super Sunday in Quebec is Wednesday afternoon. Post time Sunday is 1:00 pm. For more information, visit www.hippodrome3R.ca. From the Quebec Jockey Club      

MILTON, ON - August 1, 2020 - Matticulous GB came back strong from a disqualification last week to win Saturday's $36,000 Preferred Pace at Woodbine Mohawk Park. The Colin Johnson trainee was first to the line for the second-week in a row, this time comitting no interference and taking home the winner's share of the $36,000 purse for owner Brett Thompson. Sylvain Filion fired Matticulous GB out to the early lead and forced Casimir Richie P to take a seat in the two-hole after an opening-quarter of :26. A returning Sintra made a second-quarter brush to the lead from third, leading by the half in :54.3 and three-quarters in 1:22.2. In the stretch, a large Matticulous GB came back out and powered by to score the win by a length and a half in a career-best 1:49.1. Always A Hotshot finished second, while Sintra was third and Wheels On Fire fourth. To watch replay click here. A five-year-old gelding, Matticulous GB is now four for 12 this season and has 23 career wins to his name. He paid $10.30 to win. Saturday evening's 11-race card was spoiled by an accident in the fifth-race. The accident saw four-year-old pacer Best In Show made a quick bolt towards the rail at the head of the lane, taking out six-year-old Sports Column and driver James MacDonald. The incident caused a chain reaction with five-year-old Yacht Seelster dumping driver Chris Christoforou and four-year-old Tyga Hanover falling to the track with driver Sylvain Filion remaining in the sulky. MacDonald was examined by paramedics on the track and transported to a local hospital for further evaluation. Early reports were a possible broken collarbone and concussion. Christoforou left the track under his own power, but did book off his remaining drives. All horses involved in the accident were okay from initial examinations and escaped with only cuts and bruises. by Mark McKelvie, for Woodbine Entertainment

MILTON, ON - JULY 6, 2020 - Two-year-old harness racing pacing colts invaded Woodbine Mohawk Park on Monday evening, starring in six $23,000 Ontario Sire Stakes Grassroots divisions and No Better Joy kicked off the provincial campaign in style with an impressive 1:52.1 victory. Starting from the outside Post 9, driver Bob McClure settled No Better Joy in fourth as Flash Cube took the field to a :27.2 opening quarter. Heading for the :56.2 half McClure put the fan favourite on the front, but Flash Cube stepped up to apply pressure before the 1:24.3 three-quarters. At the top of the stretch it looked as though Flash Cube would prevail, but No Bettor Joy shifted into another gear and came back on for a head victory. Flash Cube settled for second and Cantstoplying closed well to be third. "I've never had a horse, like even when you're training at the farm and when you come to the top of the stretch, even if there's another set 20 or 30 lengths ahead, he always puts it in another gear to chase them, so I think he kind of seen that horse and he picked it up again," said Nicky Comegna, who trains No Better Joy for his father Bruno Comegna of Burlington, ON. "He's always had that attitude, that's why I liked him." Comegna's son Jordan picked No Better Joy out at last fall's London Selected Yearling Sale, offering up $46,000 for the Betterthancheddar son. The youngster impressed his connections all winter, but a few hiccups in qualifying action and his first race made Comegna opt for the Grassroots rather than the July 3 Gold Series event. "If he had gone good last week we were going to put him in on Friday, but I just couldn't justify throwing him in there after that interference break (June 26)," said the Cambridge resident. "So I figured we'd maybe get him in a little easier and see if we do have something that can go a little bit, you know. Believe it or not it gave him an extra two, three days to kind of forget about last week, and it worked out." McClure closed the Grassroots portion of the evening with another victory, guiding Shadow Play son Lawless Shadow to a 1:53 score for trainer Dr. Ian Moore of Cambridge, ON and his partners R G McGroup Ltd. of Bathurst, NB, Serge Savard of St-Bruno, QC and Frank Cannon of Sanford, FL. Bulldog Hanover was hot on the heels of the fan favorite in second and Wisk Key K completed the top three. Driver Sylvain Filion captured three Grassroots divisions, kicking off his hat trick in the second $23,150 contest with fan favourite Uncontrollable. The Control The Moment son delivered the largest margin of victory in the Grassroots divisions, reaching the wire six and one-half lengths ahead of Candy Trader and Watch My Beverage in 1:53. "He told me a couple of days ago that he was really high on him. He said he probably made a mistake, he should have probably put him in the Gold, so it made me pretty high on him too, you know," said Filion of the Scott McEneny trainee. "He was actually very, very nice. I left with him, then I pulled again around the last turn and he just cruised home." Like No Better Joy, Uncontrollable will likely make the jump up to the Gold Series for his second Ontario Sires Stakes start. McEneny, who also owns the $6,000 yearling purchase, noted that a strong showing against the top colts on July 18 could see Uncontrollable supplemented to the Battle Of Waterloo Eliminations at Grand River Raceway on July 27. "I think I'm going to give him a shot. You know what, he's better off a helmet. You can see he buzzed around them really quick and then he kind of got a little lazy, but I think if you can keep him covered up he can pace with any of them," said Puslinch resident McEneny. "Like I said, first start, with a big drop time-wise, and he did it right, so I'm pretty happy with him." Filion was back in the winner's circle after the third division with Betterthancheddar son Brilliant Corners, who sat fourth before stepping out to mount an attack on pacesetting favourite West Coast Kid. Brilliant Corners sprinted home to a 1:54.2 victory, one and three-quarter lengths ahead of his TheStable.ca stablemate First Glance. Frank Deford was four and one-quarter lengths back in third. "He was a bit of a hot-headed horse early on and I was able to sit him in the hole in the qualifiers, but he was really strong, headstrong you know, and he wouldn't really relax, but tonight he was as good as I've ever seen him. Calm, relaxed and I was able to sit him in the hole as long as I wanted and that's the reason why he was so strong at the end of the mile," said Filion. "He's learning - it's still a learning process with the two-year-olds - but every time I sat behind him he got better and better, so I hope he keeps going." Filion engineered the win for trainer Harry Poulton and fractional ownership group TheStable Brilliant Corners of Guelph, ON. The Milton resident completed the hat trick in the fifth division with Saratoga Blue Chip, who was as headstrong as Brilliant Corners was relaxed. The He's Watching son gave Filion a workout as he sat in the pocket behind Mr Charisma, but had enough left to get home for a one-half length win over Beach Blogger. Mr Charisma finished third in the 1:53.3 mile. "When he left the gate he was half a runaway. I had a hard time to hold him and I had to re-move him to the front, and then I had to take a huge hold of him again to let James (MacDonald, with Mr Charisma) go by, and then moved him again around the end of the last turn. So it wasn't the greatest drive, but it worked out anyway," said Filion with a rueful chuckle. "He stretched my arms pretty good." Filion piloted Saratoga Blue Chip to the win for trainer Anthony Beaton and owner Larry Menary of Branchton, Michael Guerriero of Brampton, Alan Alber of Thornhill, ON and George Harrison of Wanes Walton, England. Avion Seelster took the other division with a 1:53.2 victory over Lil Red Sportsstar and Warrawee Wazzup. Jody Jamieson piloted the Sportswriter colt to the win for owner-trainer Jack Darling. "There's a good group of Grassrooters. Wow, it's amazing how fast they go," said Filion of the freshman colt season opener. "The weather is so warm, and no wind at all and the track is perfect, so it makes for speed." The two-year-old pacing colts will return to Woodbine Mohawk Park on July 20 for their second Grassroots start. Complete results from Monday's program are available at Woodbine Mohawk Park Results. From the Ontario Sire Stakes

MILTON, June 19, 2020 – Boadicea and harness racing driver Sylvain Filion made sure there was no repeat of last week’s effort, scoring a coast-to-coast 1:50.4 victory in Friday’s $32,000 Mares Preferred at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Boadicea was fired to her usual spot on the lead, setting calm fractions of :26.4, :56 and 1:24, before kicking home in :26.4 to secure her second win of the season. The Bill Budd trainee set similar fractions on the front in last week’s contested, but surrendered the lead late to finish third to winner So Much More and runner-up Kendall Seelster. Last week’s top-pair turned in big efforts again on Friday, but had to settle for second and third, respectively. Kendall Seelster and Robert Shepherd sat in the two-hole behind Boadicea, angling out in the lane to sprint home, while So Much More got a perfect second-over trip from driver James MacDonald and fired off cover in the lane. Kendall Seelster edged out So Much More for the second spot, coming up a length and a quarter short of the winner. A four-year-old daughter of Big Jim, Boadicea is now two for three this season and 13 for 22 overall. Her latest victory increases her career earnings to $475,492 for owners C E Lawrence Stable Inc. and G A Lawrence Stable Inc of Blenheim, Ontario. Boadicea returned $4.90 to win as the public’s top-choice.   Live racing continues Saturday evening at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Post time is 7 p.m. Mark Melvie

Standardbred Canada reports that race favourite Northern Royale swept to command after the opening quarter and closed out the Wine & Roses Trotting Series a winner during the Valentine's Day harness racing card at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Northern Royale left sharply from post six in the $33,000 series finale for driver Sylvain Filion before 52-1 shot Kinderunbelievable, firing to her outside, crossed in front through a :27.4 opening quarter. The favourite then looped the longshot leaver down the backstretch and posted middle splits of :56.4 and 1:26.3 en route to a three-length victory in 1:55.4. Second-place went to 3-1 second choice Club Belvedere (James MacDonald), who made a bold rush out of the four-hole in tandem with Northern Royale's winning move during the second quarter and dropped into the pocket to follow the rest of the way. Delilah Seelster (Bob McClure), the longest shot on the board, was last at the half and closed late to finish third at nearly 75-1. Northern Royale, who endured a parked out trip to win the January 30 first leg, was just a head shy of a series sweep as rival Club Belvedere had collared her in their last match up on February 6. Sent postward as the favourite in the finale, she paid $3.30 to win as the 3-5 bettors' choice. Northern Royale's bankroll swelledd to six figures as she improved her career record to 9-5-1 from 26 starts. Julie Walker trains the four-year-old Royalty For Life-Dover Miss mare for owners Brenda Walker, Barry Klages and Nancy Holmes. The series was for three and four-year-old fillies and mares that were non-winners of $60,000 lifetime as of October 31, 2019. To view Friday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Friday Results - Mohawk Park.

Standardbred Canada reports that through a swift first-over grind Nirvana Seelster downed his competition to win the $30,000 featured harness racing pace at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Saturday, Dec. 14. Pointomygranson cleared command from Classic Pro passing a :27.1 first quarter but faced pressure as Nirvana Seelster raced parked uncovered into the backside. The eight-year-old Camluck gelding eventually crossed over to the pegs after a :54 half and gained separation on his tiring rivals. By three-quarters in 1:22.1, Nirvana Seelster owned a two-and-three-quarter length advantage. The Bill Budd trainee strolled through the stretch to a two-and-a-quarter length win over Ellis Park, rallying off cover for second with Physicallyinclined following in suit for third. Owned by Bruce Davy, Nirvana Seelster won his third race from 29 starts this season and his 44th from 219 overall, earning $1,221,964. Sylvain Filion steered the $11.30 winner. To view Saturday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Saturday Results - Woodbine Mohawk Park.

Standardbred Canada reports that the four-year-old Shadow Play harness racing mare Kendall Seelster swept to the front past the half and held command from the late-surging Physicallyinclined to take the $34,000 Preferred Handicap Pace at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Saturday, Nov. 23. Easy Lover Hanover rolled to the front past a :25.4 opening quarter but yielded command past a :56 half as Kendall Seelster brushed uncovered towards the top. Physicallyinclined also began to move for the front past the half and ranged within two lengths of the lead nearing three-quarters in 1:23.2. Kendall Seelster opened two lengths on Physicallylinclined in the stretch but worked to hold control through the lane. Physicallyinclined drew closer but hit the finish a half-length shy of victory in a 1:51.4 mile. Easy Lover Hanover gave chase from third. Owned by 1187422 Ontario Inc., Kendall Seelster won her ninth race from 22 starts this season and her 22nd from 56 overall, earning $931,346. Sylvain Filion drove the $6.70 winner for trainer Rod Boyd. To view Saturday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Saturday Results - Woodbine Mohawk Park. From Standardbred Canada

DUNDAS, ON - OCT. 2, 2019 - Scoring her second straight Ontario Sire Stakes Gold Series victory on Wednesday evening at Flamboro Downs, Wine Rack Hanover has established herself as one of the two-year-old harness racing trotting fillies to watch heading into the post season. Starting from the advantageous Post 1, driver Sylvain Filion wanted to control the tempo and, on her best behaviour, Wine Rack Hanover complied. The filly laid down fractions of :30, 1:00.2 and 1:31.1 and, without facing a challenge, sailed home a one and three-quarter length winner in 2:00.1. Princesspartypants finished second and Alpina was third. Fan favourite Jula Shes Magic made an early break and finished well back in fifth. "When you've got the rail on a half-mile you've got to try and hold your position and hope for the best, but I knew at from the start when she left the gate that she felt solid and I was pretty confident," said Filion. "She did it pretty easy, well in hand. She's still learning, but I mean she's come a long way from how she started off to how she is now." Wine Rack Hanover started her Ontario Sires Stakes on a strong note, winning her July 14 Grassroots division at Georgian Downs, but struggled mid-season with breaks. Filion first sat behind the Kadabra daughter when trainer Richard "Nifty" Norman re-qualified her on Sept. 17. Wine Rack Hanover won that qualifier with a 1:56.1 effort and then earned her first Gold Series win at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Sept. 24. Regular reinsman Trevor Henry was in the bike for that start but is currently in Lexington, KY, so Filion was happy to fill in for Wednesday's outing. "I had a chance to qualify her a few weeks ago and I really liked her," said Milton, ON resident Filion. "She had a tendency to make breaks, so they kind of changed the gear and she qualified real good, and then she raced good and tonight, well Trevor's gone away, so they asked me to come and drive her and I said, 'Sure, absolutely'." Norman trains Wine Rack Hanover for Pinske Stables of Plato, MN and Bridgette Jablonsky of Hanover, PA. In nine starts the filly now boasts a record of three wins and two thirds for earnings of $133,238 and heads into the Oct. 12 Super Final in fourth spot in the division standings. Warrawee Vicky will lead the two-year-old trotting fillies into the post season after scoring her third Gold Series win Wednesday. Starting from Post 4, the fan favourite tucked in third early as Trina led the field of seven to a :30 quarter and a 1:00.2 half. Heading for the 1:30.4 three-quarters driver Doug McNair sent Warrawee Vicky up the outside to the lead and although Trina went off-stride McNair kept the pedal down and Warrawee Vicky powered home to a six and one-quarter length victory in 1:59.3. Pocket-sitter She Rocks Kemp finished second and Ride To Justice recovered from an early break to be third. "She raced good last week and real good again tonight," said McNair, who was making his second appearance in Warrawee Vicky's race bike. "She's flawlessly gaited and absolutely perfect to drive. It gives you lots of options." McNair crafted the win for trainer Scott McEneny of Puslinch and owner Brad Grant of Milton, ON. In addition to Wednesday's win Warrawee Vicky was also victorious in the July 11 Gold event at Woodbine Mohawk Park and the July 24 Gold event at Grand River Raceway. In nine lifetime starts the Royalty For Life daughter boasts a record of five wins and one second for earnings of $173,265. The top 10 point earners from the regular season will now advance to the Oct. 12 Super Final at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Wednesday's event wrapped up Flamboro Downs' 2019 Ontario Sires Stakes schedule, which was highlighted by an Ontario Sires Stakes and track record performance by three-year-old pacing filly Sunny Dee in Gold Series action on Sept. 22. Complete results from Wednesday's program are available at Flamboro Downs Results. From the Ontario Sire Stakes

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