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JULY 11, 2017 - Defending Lampman Cup champion Sylvain Filion made the trip to Georgian Downs for the the harness racing two-year-old pacing filly Ontario Sire Stakes Grassroots opener on Tuesday evening and delivered three trophies into the hands of delighted trainers and owners. A four-time winner of the Lampman Cup as the top driver in the Ontario Sires Stakes program and currently sitting third in the point race, Filion opened the Grassroots event with a 1:55.3 score with Azure Seelster. The daughter of Shadow Play made a break going around the first turn, but recovered quickly and was leading the field of eight by the halfway marker. Azure Seelster powered home one and three-quarter lengths ahead of Raven Seelster, with Sunday Afternoon three more lengths back in third. "She's a little aggressive and going through the first turn she just couldn't handle the turn and made a break, but she made the nice recovery and she was game on after that," said Filion. "She held on tough, she raced good, really good." Filion piloted Azure Seelster to her first lifetime victory for trainer Jacques Dupont and owners Les Ecuries Dorleans Inc. of Repentigny, QC, numbered companies 9099 3833 Quebec Inc. and 2745 5815 Quebec Inc. of Sorel-Tracy, QC and Paul Andre Lehoux of Sainte-Marie, QC. The partners acquired Azure Seelster from last fall's Forest City Yearling Sale for $55,000. The filly's dam, Winbak Alice, is a half-sister to former Ontario Sires Stakes star and $2 million winner Lady Shadow. After finishing third and fifth in the next two Grassroots divisions with a pair of fillies trained by Dany Fontaine, Filion was back in the winner's circle after the fourth division. The Milton, ON resident guided Askmysecretary to a 1:55.3 score over Daily Sports and Shadowofhersmile, who crossed the wire in lockstep, dead-heating for second. "We had a nice second over trip, almost amounted to disaster around the last turn when the horse in front of us (Ovation Seelster) made a break, but she was able to stay at it, and she just flew home," said Filion. "I pulled the plugs at the top of the stretch and she just kicked in another gear." Filion added that trainer Ted MacDonnell had made an equipment change before Tuesday's start that had a positive impact on Askmysecretary. Allenford resident MacDonnell shares ownership of the Mach Three daughter, a $35,000 yearling at the Forest City Sale, with Leonard Gamble of Etobicoke and Tony Lawrence of Hanover, ON. "They were very pleased with that race, she was way stronger than she was the last time I sat behind her," said Filion, who had piloted the filly to a seventh-place result in her first lifetime start at Mohawk Racetrack on July 3. Filion's final mount was the primary reason he decided to make the trip to Georgian Downs. The reinsman had qualified Shower Play twice, and in each mile the daughter of Shadow Play impressed him more. In the last $19,150 Grassroots division the pair went straight to the front from Post 3, fought off a challenge heading by the three-quarters and then sailed home four and one-quarter length winners in 1:56. Write Me A Song finished second and challenger Delaney R was third. "She's a real nice, big, strong filly and every time I've sat behind her, the further she went during the mile, the stronger she got," explained Filion. "Nobody could have went past her tonight I think. She felt real strong still at the wire, and with minimal urging. I see her improving her next couple starts again. I don't know, I might be wrong, but I can maybe see a Gold potential there." Rockwood, ON resident Rene Dion trains Shower Play for his partner Susanne Kerwood of Rockwood and Martin Leveillee of St-Blaire-Sure-Richelieu, QC. The filly was a $15,000 purchase from the Forest City Yearling Sale. Trainer Casie Coleman is also hoping to make a move up to the Gold Series with Play The Bell, who delivered the fastest mile of the five Grassroots divisions, stopping the teletimer at 1:53.1. Play The Bell rang up fractions of :27.3, :56.2 and 1:25 on her way to the one-half length victory over Oxford Comma. Last Symphony, with Filion at the helm, was six and one-quarter lengths behind the leaders in third. "She's been getting better and better. She trained with Summer Travel this week and trained really big with him," said Coleman, referring to a two-year-old pacing colt stablemate of Play The Bell's who was a dominant 1:51.4 winner in a two-year-old contest at Mohawk Racetrack on Tuesday. "I was mad at myself for not entering the Gold after she trained so well, but her first start (July 3) I wasn't all that happy with her so went Grassroots." Elora resident Bob McClure crafted the win for Coleman, who calls Cambridge home, her partners in the West Wins Stable of Cambridge, Mac Nichol of Burlington and Calhoun Racing Ltd. of Chatham, ON. Play the Bell, a daughter of Shadow Play and Bell Bottom Pans was a $60,000 acquisition from the Harrisburg Yearling Sale. The other Grassroots trophy went home with another daughter of Shadow Play, Shadow World, who scored a 1:56.4 victory over Hammering Haley and Enchanted Eva. Jonathan Drury drove Shadow World to the win for trainer Colin Johnson of Repentigny, QC, Thomas Kyron of Toronto, ON and Jean Mondoux of Laval, QC. The filly was a $32,000 purchase out of the Canadian Yearling Sale. The two-year-old pacing fillies will make their second Grassroots start at Mohawk Racetrack on July 21. The Ontario Sires Stakes returns to Georgian Downs on Sunday, July 16 with the second Grassroots event of the two-year-old trotting filly campaign. Post time for Sunday's event is 6 pm OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: www.ontariosiresstakes.com Ontario Racing

JUNE 22, 2017 - Thursday, June 22 was an emotional day for harness racing driver Sylvain Filion. In the early morning hours the Milton, ON resident learned that his uncle, the legendary horseman Herve Filion, had passed away after a prolonged illness. Hours later Sylvain Filion was at Mohawk Racetrack, where he was scheduled to drive in nine of 10 races. In the first race he finished last, but he was the runner-up in the second and before the night was over he would record four victories, including one Grassroots triumph with three-year-old colt pacer Doc Semalu. "It was a pretty emotional day for me," admitted Filion at the end of the 10-race program. "I knew it was coming, we knew he was very sick, but it's always a shock when you hear that, you know." Filion's victories came in the fourth race with Toxicity, a three-year-old pacing gelding co-owned by his father Yves' Bayama Farms, in the sixth race with three-year-old trotting filly Royal Witch, in the seventh race with Grassroots competitor Doc Semalu, also co-owned by Bayama Farms, and in the ninth race with seven-year-old pacing gelding Crocadile Canyon. In addition to the four victories, Filion also recorded three runner-up finishes. Of the four victories, Filion's Grassroots triumph was particularly impressive, coming from Post 10 in Doc Semalu's first Ontario Sires Stakes start of the season. The pair was able to find a spot on the rail in fifth and held that position through fractions of :27, :56 and 1:24.3 before finding space coming off the final turn. Manoeuvered into an open lane in the stretch, Doc Semalu sprinted home to a three-quarter length victory over Dream Of Luck and Master The View in a personal best 1:54. "He's got a few issues, but he's got lots of go in him, and we were lucky enough to find a spot there closer to the front and everything opened up in the lane," said Filion. "It worked out good for us. He showed some grit." The win was the Mach Three son's second straight, the first coming at Rideau Carleton Raceway on June 15 with Yves Filion in the race bike. Stephane Larocque trains Doc Semalu for the elder Filion's Bayama Farms Inc. of Saint-Andre-D'Argenteuil, QC and Zoom And Fish Stable Inc. of Mont-Royal, QC. Doc Semalu Filion came close to making it five victories with Tremendous Play in the final $19,500 Grassroots division. After battling for the lead through the first two quarters the Shadow Play son did not have enough in reserve to secure the victory in the stretch, yielding to a fast closing Oak Island. Fan favourite Lindy The Kid also went by Tremendous Play, but caused interference while on a break and was placed back to seventh, elevating Tremendous Play to second and Bills Fella to third. "I thought he raced really, really good," said Filion of Tremendous Play, who is trained by Rockwood, ON resident Benoit Baillargeon for Claude Gendreau Stable Inc. of Buffalo Grove, IL. "He raced tough tonight, real tough." Oak Island was piloted to the three and one-half length victory by Elora, ON resident Bob McClure. The 1:53.2 victory was the Vintage Master colt's first in Ontario Sires Stakes action, and also marked trainer Justin Darling's first win in the provincial program. The Cambridge, ON resident conditions Oak Island for Hutt Racing Stable of Paoli, PA. Oak Island The other Grassroots trophy went home with Nascar Seelster, who got a head in front of Mach Déjà Vu and favourite Southwind General at the wire. Milton resident Randy Waples crafted the come-from-behind 1:53.1 score for trainer Bob McIntosh of Windsor and his partners Dave Boyle of Bowmanville, Mardon Stables of Loretto and James Walker of Port Perry, ON. Like Doc Semalu and Oak Island, Thursday marked Mach Three son Nascar Seelster's debut in the Grassroots winner's circle. All three colts will have an opportunity to add to their trophy collection in the third Grassroots event on July 13 at Mohawk Racetrack. Nascar Seelster Filion's successful evening was a fitting tribute to his uncle Herve, whose talent and prodigious work ethic saw him finish many days with multiple wins, often at more than one racetrack. Inducted into both the Canadian and US Harness Racing Hall of Fames, Angers, QC native Herve Filion won an impressive 16 seasonal dash titles and was the world's leading money-winning driver seven times during a career that spanned six decades and 15,180 victories. Knowing that his uncle was at peace, free of pain, and that he would soon gather with family to share memories and offer support allowed Filion to concentrate on his evening's work, but at the end of the program the third-generation horseman was simply looking forward to heading home. "I'm just happy this night is over, you know," he said on his way back to Milton. "I'll go kiss my daughter." Mohawk Racetrack will host its seventh Ontario Sires Stakes event on Tuesday, June 27 with the three-year-old trotting colts preparing to battle in their second Gold Series event. OSS Program Information For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: www.ontariosiresstakes.com Ontario Racing

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec - If the morning line odds are true to form, then Louis-Philippe Roy will win Sunday afternoon's All-Star Drivers Tournament at the Hippodrome 3R. Then again, in past tournaments, the driver who is the morning line favorite, has never won. Louis-Philippe Roy (LPR) is the H3R driving champion last year and currently leads all drivers at the track early on this season. He is also the leading money winning driver in all of Canada so far, this year and is second in Canada in dash victories. But come this Sunday, LPR faces many of the world's top harness drivers in the second annual All-Star Drivers Tournament at H3R. Included in the line-up are Hall of Famer David Miller, returning tournament champion Jody Jamieson, two-time O'Brien Award Winning Driver of the Year, Sylvain Filion, Trotting Triple Crown winner last year, Scott Zeron, Grand Circuit driving champion Yannick Gingras, recent $529,000 Levy Series Final winning driver and Trois-Rivieres native, Daniel Dube and the return to Quebec after 17 years, Stephane Bouchard, who has 8,576 career wins. All eight drivers will compete in eight tournament races starting at 12:30 pm. The eight races are the 2nd through 9th events and the tournament prize is $10,000. Calculating from the morning line odds, LPR wins the tournament with 149 points, followed by Stephane Bouchard 140 points, Jody Jamieson (112) and Scott Zeron with 97 points. But as these tournaments have shown in the past, the morning line favorites usually do not prevail. Jamieson just got up last year in the last of the tournament races with a second place finish. The "tail of the tape" as they say, belongs to none other than David Miller. Inducted into the Harness Racing Hall of Fame last year, Miller has been the Dan Patch Award Winning Driver of the Year the past two seasons. He leads all drivers in the competition with over 10,200 wins, $212 million in purses won and he is the oldest competitor at age 53. LPR is the youngest of the eight drivers at age 27. Just three years ago he was driving mainly on the Quebec Fair Circuit and the last year has surged to become a national leader. LPR has only 540 career wins and $3.5 million in earnings, more than half of those earnings since January 2017 when he joined the WEG circuit. Two weeks ago, he set a track record at H3R, winning eight of his eleven drives on one card. Yannick Gingras, Daniel Dube and Sylvain Filion are hometown favorites at H3R as well as LPR. The morning line stats are interesting in that every driver in the tournament has only one morning line favorite to drive. If that statistic comes true, then the winner of the tournament is the driver who can finish 2nd through 6th the most, earning as many placing points as possible. Points are 1st - 50, 2nd - 25, 3rd - 12, 4th - 8, 5th - 5 and 6th - 2 points. No points for 7th and 8th place. A driver with a horse that is scratched gets the average points they have earned in the tournament. Last year it was Jody Jamieson that won the inaugural tournament because he was the only driver to score points in every race. That was his key to victory. Reading the morning line "points earned" for the tournament is sort of like calling a long race with some interesting turn of events. It starts out with Scott Zeron going to the early lead followed by LPR with Miller stuck first-over and Bouchard second over. Dube then sweeps three-wide and gets in front of Miller, who is tiring. Yannick Gingras, who followed Dube three-wide, gets into second-over position while Zeron still leads the field and LPR sitting good in the pocket-seat. Jamieson then goes three-wide, loops Gingras, but can't get by Zeron as Miller fades to the back and Bouchard ends up following Jamieson with Sylvain Filion getting into the outside flow as they enter the backstretch. Miller, who was shuffled back to last, gets a second wind and follows Filion as LPR finds clearance at the three-quarters and goes after Zeron on the final turn. Coming for home, Filion is three-wide and coming on, Zeron and LPR are neck and neck starting down the stretch. Bouchard looped Miller and followed Filion and then tips four-wide as Dube looks for an opening as Miller and Gingras fade out of the picture. Jamieson gets live cover following LPR. Down to the finish it's LPR winning by a half-length over the late closing Bouchard with Jamieson third over Zeron, Dube and Filion finish in a dead heat for fifth place with Gingras and Miller at the back of the pack. Then again, Jamieson and Filion were not expected to do that well last year and Jamieson won it and Filion was third with John Campbell second. I guess that's why this competition can be so exciting. You never know who can win it! There will be an autograph, meet and greet, with all the drivers in the grandstand at H3R starting at 11:15 am Sunday morning. To watch and wager on the H3R races, visit most any wagering website. For more information, visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club  

May 25, 2017 - As part of the Ontario Sires Stakes season opener on Sunday, May 21 harness racing trainer Mark Steacy and driver Sylvain Filion were honoured for their 2016 Johnston and Lampman Cup victories. As the three-year-old trotting and pacing colts kicked off the Confederation Cup program at Flamboro Downs, Steacy and Filion were presented with commemorative Citizen Eco-Drive watches from Ontario Racing Executive Director Rob Cook. Steacy earned his first Johnston Cup title in 2016 with a point tally of 269, generated from 132 starts, 14 wins, 13 seconds and 21 third-place finishes in Ontario Sires Stakes action. Twenty-six different horses carried the Steacy stable colours in OSS action last season, banking a total of $603,540. Among the Lansdowne, ON resident's top performers were three-year-old pacing filly Grassroots champion Forever Liza, sophomore trotting filly Royal Charm and colt Sass, and two-year-old trotting colt Dream Massive. In the second race of the evening, Dream Massive did his part to kick-start Steacy's defense of the Johnston Cup title with a 1:58.1 victory in the sophomore trotting colt Gold Series opener. The Johnston Cup was established in 1993 in memory of Bruce Johnston, publisher of The Canadian Sportsman magazine. It is awarded annually to the leading trainer in the Ontario Sires Stakes program based on a point system that awards one point for each start, four points for each win, three points for each second and two points for each third. Filion achieved his second straight and fourth lifetime Lampman Cup winning season in 2016. Since his first win in 2012, the Milton, ON resident has only relinquished the title once, finishing third in 2014. Last season Filion teamed 199 Ontario Sires Stakes starters, recording 47 wins, 26 seconds and 23 thirds for earnings of $2,171,210 and 511 Lampman Cup points. Among Filion's top mounts were two-year-old pacing colt Grassroots champion Tymal Peacemaker, and division winners Streakavana (two-year-old pacing colt), Yaris Bayama (two-year-old pacing filly), Warrawee Roo (three-year-old trotting colt) and Emoticon Hanover (three-year-old trotting filly). The Lampman Cup has been awarded annually since 1987 and honours the memory of long time Ontario Jockey Club publicist Jim Lampman. Like the Johnston Cup, drivers are awarded one Lampman Cup point for each start, four points for each win, three points for each second and two points for each third. Steacy and Filion will have an opportunity to add to their 2017 point totals in the second Ontario Sires Stakes event of the season on Friday, May 26 at The Raceway at Western Fair District. The three-year-old pacing colts will square off in two $95,600 Gold Series divisions in Races 3 and 6, part of the London oval's signature Molson Pace Night which gets under way at 7:05 pm. For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit: www.ontariosiresstakes.com OSS Program Administration Ontario Racing

TORONTO, January 31 - Fresh off winning his fourth O'Brien Award as Canada's harness racing 'Driver of the Year', Sylvain Filion will be a celebrity guest at the upcoming Milton Sports Celebrity Dinner on Tuesday, February 7. The 15th annual Milton Sports Celebrity Dinner is coordinated by the Milton Chamber of Commerece and will be held at Rattlesnake Golf Club. The dinner and auction is hosted by Ken Reid of Rogers Sportsnet. Filion joins an impressive list of celebrity athletes that will be attending this year's event, including Hockey Hall of Fame members Paul Henderson and Paul Coffey, former Toronto Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston, curling champion Rachel Homan, former NHL player Shayne Corson and Olympian Melissa Bishop. The Sports Celebrity Dinner & Auction has become one of Milton's most talked about events, raising the profile of the Milton Chamber of Commerce and the Chamber Scholarship Fund. The Sports Celebrity Dinner & Auction brings together sports heroes and sports enthusiasts alike. Organized by a volunteer committee of Chamber members, the evening's program includes an autograph signing session, a cocktail reception, a gourmet meal, and a silent and live auction. Bidding on the live auction items, which in past years has featured golf packages, spa packages, autographed jerseys and sports memorabilia, is one of the highlights of the evening. The festivities conclude with the celebrity athletes gathering on stage for a question and answer session led by Reid. Proceeds from the event go towards the Chamber Scholarship Fund, which helps fund post-secondary education for local high school students. The Woodbine Entertainment Group is a proud sponsor of the Milton Sports Celebrity Dinner. Tickets are $175 and can be purchased by emailing Cheryl@miltonchamber.ca or by clicking here. Mark McKelvie

On Saturday, January 28, Standardbred Canada announced harness racing's national champions at the 2016 O'Brien Awards, which honour Canada's best in harness racing over the past season. This was the 28th edition of the O'Brien Awards, named in honour of the late Joe O'Brien, an outstanding horseman and member of the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame. It was a big night for several winners who took home more than one O'Brien trophy. Betting Line, co-owned and trained by Casie Coleman of Cambridge, Ont., who shares ownership with West Wins Stable, Christine Calhoun and Mac Nichol, took home two O'Briens - one in the three-year-old pacing colt category and one as Canada's Horse of the Year. Marvin Katz of Toronto, Ont., and Al Libfeld of Pickering, Ont., were honoured for the second consecutive year with the Armstrong Breeder of the Year Award, and their two-year-old trotting filly, Ariana G won the O'Brien in her division. Katz also shares ownership on Idyllic Beach who was honoured as Canada's Two-Year-Old Pacing Filly of the Year. Rick Zeron of Oakville, Ont., took home the O'Brien Award of Horsemanship and his two-year-old trotting colt, Mass Production was also honoured with an O'Brien. Driver Sylvain Filion, of Milton, Ont., and trainer Richard Moreau of Puslinch, Ont., added to their trophy collections, both winning National honours in their respective categories for the fourth time in their careers. Betting Line was almost perfect in 2016, finishing the season with 14 wins and a second in 15 races to go along with almost $1.7 million in earnings. The Bettor's Delight colt's victories included the $1-million Pepsi North America Cup, the Battle of the Brandywine, the Milstein Memorial, the Little Brown Jug, the Simcoe Stakes, and a sweep of all of his Ontario Sires Stakes races, including his OSS Super Final. What started as a partnership that focused on buying yearlings and racing horses has evolved into one of harness racing's most respected breeding enterprises for Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld. Horses bred by this partnership won 29 races and purses in excess of $1.3 million in 2016. Their top horses were All The Time, O'Brien winner Ariana G, Princess Aurora and O Narutac Perfecto. Canada's Two-Year-Old Trotting Filly of the year, Ariana G won nine of 11 races and earned $804,245 during her rookie campaign. Stakes wins for the Muscle Hill filly included the Breeders Crown, Jim Doherty Memorial, Peaceful Way elimination and final, and New Jersey Sire Stakes Championship. Veteran horseman Rick Zeron continued to successfully compete as a trainer and driver on the Woodbine Entertainment Group (WEG) circuit. Last year he drove 116 winners and horses to almost $2.6 million in purse earnings, while training 49 winners and horses to $1.7 million in earnings, including Mass Production, winner of the O'Brien Award in the two-year-old trotting colt category. The Muscle Mass colt, Mass Production, won five of nine races and more than $285,000 during his rookie campaign. His victories included four Ontario Sires Stakes wins highlighted by a season's best 1:54.4 stakes record effort in the OSS Super Final. Sylvain Filion, a resident of Milton, Ont., won Canada's Driver of the Year title in 2012, 2013 and 2015 before collecting his fourth bronze for the 2016 season. In 2016, he drove 310 winners and led all Canadian drivers in the earnings column with more than $7.7 million, while joining the $100 million club for lifetime earnings. Filion was the regular driver for O'Brien champion, two-year-old pacing colt Beyond Delight. Richard Moreau, of Puslinch, Ont., took home his fourth consecutive O'Brien trophy. Moreau, who has been a regular on the WEG circuit for over 12 years, led all Canadian trainers in the wins column with 249 wins to his credit and trained the winners of nearly $4.0 million. Louis-Philippe Roy was recognized as the Future Star winner. In 2016, the Mont-Joli, QC resident put together some phenomenal numbers, winning 233 races and driving horses to earnings of more than $1 million. Roy was the leading dash winning driver at Hippodrome 3R and Rideau Carleton Raceway. Idyllic Beach was honoured in the two-year-old pacing filly division. She hit the board in all of her 14 races, boasted eight wins and almost $730,000 in purse earnings. Major stakes wins for the Somebeachsomewhere filly included the Shes A Great Lady elimination and final at Mohawk Racetrack, along with the Kentuckiana Stakes at Hoosier Park, and the International Stallion Stake at The Red Mile. The Bettor's Delight colt Beyond Delight, winner in the Two-Year-Old Pacing Colt category, won three of 11 races and more than $423,000 for his connections. His three wins were major ones as he swept the elimination and final of the Metro Pace and won a division of the Champlain Stakes, all at Mohawk Racetrack. L A Delight picked up her second consecutive O'Brien trophy after putting together another stellar season as a sophomore, winning nine races in 19 starts and more than $787,000. The three-year-old pacing filly was perfect in the Ontario Sires Stakes events, sweeping six of six, including the season-ending Super Final. She posted a life's best 1:49.1 in winning the Nadia Lobell at The Meadows. Lady Shadow also won her second consecutive O'Brien Award in the Older Pacing Mare category. She put together another profitable season with 12 victories and more than $945,000 in earnings. She was strong throughout the season, sweeping the elimination and final of the Roses Are Red, the Milton Stakes, and the elimination and final of the Breeders Crown before capping her year with a win in the TVG FFA at The Meadowlands. Wiggle It Jiggleit, the sport's richest harness horse last season with $1.8 million bankrolled was voted Canada's Older Pacing Horse of the Year. He never finished worse than third in his 24 races which included 15 wins and a mark of 1:47.2 posted in the Graduate Final at The Meadowlands. The multiple stakes winner captured Canada's oldest stakes event, The Canadian Pacing Derby at Mohawk Racetrack and also secured runner-up finishes in the Confederation Cup and Prix d'Été on Canadian soil. Caprice Hill won her second consecutive O'Brien, after a profitable campaign in 2016 with eight wins in 15 starts and purses in excess of $630,000 for her connections. The Three-Year-Old Trotting Filly of the Year won three of four Ontario Sires Stakes events, the Casual Breeze, Simcoe Stakes and was runner-up in the Hambletonian Oaks. Marion Marauder took divisional honours as Canada's Three-Year-Old Trotting Colt of the Year. He was a winner of 10 of 15 starts, became the ninth Trotting Triple Crown winner in 2016 -- and first since 2006 -- by sweeping the Hambletonian, Yonkers Trot, and Kentucky Futurity. The son of Muscle Hill won the Goodtimes Stakes and a division of the Stanley Dancer Memorial en route to a season that amassed more than $1.5 million in purses, topping the North American earnings charts for all trotters. The incredible trotting mare Hannelore Hanover won 17 of 20 races and earned $1.1 million in purses, leading all female trotters in earnings and winning the O'Brien in her division. Her victories included the Breeders Crown Mare Trot and the Hambletonian Maturity, where she defeated male rivals. She also beat the boys in the Centaur Trotting Classic in addition to winning the Armbro Flight Stakes, TVG Series championship for female trotters, Fresh Yankee, Muscle Hill, and Miami Valley Distaff. Her mile time of 1:51 in winning the Armbro Flight equaled the world record for a four-year-old trotting mare. Flanagan Memory was recognized as Older Trotting Horse of the Year. The now seven-year-old son of Kadabra won six of 14 races including the Allerage, and the Breeders Crown Championship, and banked more than $663,000 last season. This was his second O'Brien Award as he won Three-Year-Old Trotting Colt honours in 2013. The Media Excellence Awards and Outstanding Groom Award were also presented at the O'Brien Awards gala. Teesha Symes, 27, of Cambridge, Ont., was recognized with the Outstanding Groom Award for 2016. Symes has worked for O'Brien Award winner Dr. Ian Moore for the last decade, and full-time since 2012. The Springhill, N.S. native cared for State Treasurer, Canada's Horse of the Year in 2015, throughout his racing career. In addition to State Treasurer, Symes went on the road to care for Rockin In Heaven the past two years and also cared for many of the Moore Stables' two-year-olds.  Keith McCalmont of Toronto, Ont. won in the Outstanding Written Work category for his contribution to the 'Remembering Those Lost' feature, published in the February 2016 issue of TROT Magazine. McCalmont talked to some of the trainers and owners most affected by the tragic barn fire at Classy Lane Training Centre and asked them to share some memories of their beloved horses. Woodbine Entertainment's 2016 Pepsi North America Cup broadcast in HD won the Media Excellence Award in the Outstanding Video, Film or Broadcast category. 'The Pepsi North America Cup' aired across Canada on the TSN2 television network on Saturday, June 18, 2016 from 10:00 - 11:00 p.m. The 60-minute special broadcast of the $1- Million Pepsi North America Cup aired in high definition and featured live race coverage of the main event as well as a feature on Emprize Hanover and her two foals. Clive Cohen's photo of October racing at Mohawk Racetrack in Campbellville, Ont. was the winner in the Outstanding Photography category. This marked the third time that Cohen has won in this category. Cohen's photo was taken on October 1, 2016, at Mohawk Racetrack and published later that night on the WEG Standardbred Instagram feed. Cohen is the resident track photographer for Standardbred racing at Mohawk and Woodbine Racetracks.  Here is a complete list of winners and their respective owners: 2016 O'BRIEN AWARD WINNERS PACERS TWO-YEAR-OLD FILLY PACER Idyllic Beach Owned by Christina Takter, East Windsor, NJ - John Fielding, Toronto, ON - Brixton Medical Inc., Matawan, NJ and Marvin Katz, Toronto, ON   TWO-YEAR-OLD COLT PACER Beyond Delight Owned by Jeffrey Snyder, Michael Snyder, New York, NY and Four Friends Racing Stable LLC, Moorestown, NJ   THREE-YEAR-OLD FILLY PACER L A Delight Owned by Robert McIntosh Stables Inc., Windsor, ON - CSX Stables, Liberty Center, OH, and Al McIntosh Holdings, Inc., Leamington, ON   THREE-YEAR-OLD COLT PACER Betting Line Owned by West Wins Stable, Cambridge, ON, Christine Calhoun, Chatham, ON and Mac Nichol, Burlington, ON   OLDER PACING MARE Lady Shadow Owned by David Kryway, Amherstburg, ON, Carl Atley, Xenia, OH, Ed Gold, Phoenixville, PA and BFJ Stable, Philadelphia, PA   OLDER PACING HORSE Wiggle It Jiggleit Owned by George Teague Jr Inc., Harrington DE - Teague Racing Partnership, Boynton Beach, FL   TROTTERS TWO-YEAR-OLD FILLY TROTTER Ariana G Owned by Marvin Katz, Toronto, ON & Al Libfeld, Pickering, ON   TWO-YEAR-OLD COLT TROTTER Mass Production Owned by Rick Zeron Stables, Oakville, ON- James Walker, Port Perry, ON- Bruno Dipoce, Wasaga Beach, ON and Rene Allard, Matamoras, PA   THREE-YEAR-OLD FILLY TROTTER Caprice Hill Owned by Tom Hill, Hamilton, ON   THREE-YEAR-OLD COLT TROTTER Marion Marauder Owned by Marion Jean Wellwood, Stratford, ON & Devin Keeling, Cambridge, ON   OLDER TROTTING MARE Hannelore Hanover Owned by Burke Racing Stable LLC, Fredericktown - Weaver Bruscemi LLC, Canonsburg, PA - Frank Baldachino, Clarksburg, NJ - J And T Silva Stables LLC, Long Beach, NY   OLDER TROTTING HORSE Flanagan Memory Owned by Liette Flanagan, Repentigny - Rene Dion, Saint-Lazare, QC   HORSE OF THE YEAR Betting Line Owned by West Wins Stable, Cambridge, ON, Christine Calhoun, Chatham, ON and Mac Nichol, Burlington, ON   PEOPLE AWARDS O'BRIEN AWARD OF HORSEMANSHIP Rick Zeron, Oakville, ON   ARMSTRONG BREEDER OF THE YEAR Marvin Katz, Toronto, ON / Al Libfeld, Pickering, ON   DRIVER OF THE YEAR Sylvain Filion, Milton, ON   TRAINER OF THE YEAR Richard Moreau, Puslinch, ON   FUTURE STAR AWARD Louis Philippe Roy, Mont-Joli, QC   ADDITIONAL AWARDS PRESENTED AT THE O'BRIEN AWARDS Outstanding Groom Award Teesha Symes, Cambridge, ON Standardbred Canada's Media Excellence Awards Written Work - Keith McCalmont Broadcast - Woodbine Entertainment Group Photography - Clive Cohen     Jeff Porchak  

On Tuesday, harness racing's newest inductee to the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame, Yves Filion, will be feted before the Quebec National Assembly in Quebec City. Filion, and his renowned Bayama Farms, are names that have resounded throughout North America in harness racing over the last few decades, and have resonated with the name of his home province, Quebec. Sponsored by his deputy in Argenteuil, Yves St-Denis, Yves Filion will be honored before the National Assembly with a special tribute for his immense contributions to the development of harness racing in Quebec for many years. Yves comes from a family steeped in harness racing history, the Filion's, which made itself known at all the North American Standardbred racetracks. But beyond the name Filion, there is the name Yves, a man who built himself and whom he radiated by his own exploits. For more than fifty years in the racing industry does not necessarily bring success, but for Yves, that was the case. Goliath Bayama, Leader Bayama, Rebeka Bayama, Naomi Bayama, Lady Bayama, champions of their time, is the fruit of the passionate work of a man who has possessed all the keys to this difficult art of developing champions. "This is such an honor," Filion said, "Something special that can happen only once in a lifetime. I am very proud and at a loss for words to express my feelings. With this honor and my induction to the Hall of Fame in August, it has made for a very good year. "If not for the many owners who supported me," Filion added, "My career would not have been so fulfilling. I must thank many of my owners including Réal Bélanger, Brian Paquet, Jacques Damours, Luc Paiement, Gaston Bibeau, Sylvain Deschenaux, Serge Godin, Gene Kruger, Normand Mondou and others helped me a great deal." Filion, 68, from Saint-Andre-D'Argent, has been one of Quebec's premier drivers and trainers for the better part of 30 years. He has driven in over 18,000 races and has 4,387 victories and earnings of over $26.7 million to his credit. He's also trained 273 winners and horses to earnings of nearly $3.7 million, and bred many successful horses at his Bayama Farms. Two of the most successful horses that he developed, trained and drove were millionaire pacing colts Runnymede Lobell and Goliath Bayama. Yves trained and drove Runnymede Lobell to victory in the 1988 North America Cup, his richest of 31 victories. Runnymede Lobell won over $1.6 million during his career. Goliath Bayama was another millionaire that Yves not only trained but bred. Considered his top trainee, Goliath Bayama won 25 races with earnings of over $1.5 million in his career. After his two-year-old season, Yves turned the driving duties over to his son Sylvain. The pair combined for a runner up finish in the North America Cup in his three-year-old campaign. As an older pacer, Goliath won both the Breeders Crown in 1:48.4 and then the US Pacing Championship in 1:48.2 in 2001 at the Meadowalnds. On August 19, 2001, Filion's Goliath Bayama set a Canadian record of 1:48.1 at Hippodrome de Montreal and then another of his trainees, Ring of Life, a horse he had purchased as a yearling, captured the Confederation Cup at Flamboro Downs. Filion's son, Sylvain drove both horses. Filion also bred, owned and trained the top pacing mare Rebeka Bayama, a multiple stakes winner who won 23 races and over $690,000 during her career. Filion also bred, trained and owned a number of Quebec champions including Goodtime Bayama, Sandy Bayama and Le Brave. Yves is a brother to Hall of Famer Herve Filion and the youngest of eight boys and two girls. His son, Sylvain Filion, was Canada's Driver of the Year in 2012, 2013 and 2015. From the Quebec Jockey Club      

CAMPBELLVILLE, November 11 - The 2016 Mohawk harness racing meet is set to close Monday evening and there will be zero drama in the race for top driver and top trainer. On Saturday evening, Sylvain Filion and Richard Moreau were recognized as leading driver and trainer, respectively, during the 2016 meet. Filion leads all drivers with 190 wins entering Monday's final card of the meet. Trevor Henry sits second in the standings with 143 victories. Filion's large lead in the wins category is topped by his impressive advantage in the earnings category. The Milton, Ontario resident has driven the winners of over $5.1 million during the Mohawk meet, $2.1 million more than Henry ($3 million). Over on the training side, Moreau enters the final card of the Mohawk meet with 93 victories, 36 wins ahead of nearest rival Carmen Auciello. Moreau's stable has earned over $1.8 million this season at Mohawk, which is second only to Jimmy Takter's earnings of $2 million. Filion and Moreau's strong numbers during the Mohawk meet have them well-ahead to capture their second consecutive WEG Driving and Training titles. An 11-race card will wrap up the 2016 Mohawk meet Monday. Filion has 10 drives on the card, while Moreau has five horses scheduled to compete. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, October 31 - Harness racing driver Sylvain Filion became the newest member of the $100 million club on Halloween night at Mohawk Racetrack. The 47-year-old resident of Milton, Ontario entered Monday's card $8,807 away from $100 million in career earnings and used a pair of second-place finishes in $18,000 Autumn Series divisions to reach the milestone. Filion was out of town last weekend at The Meadowlands for the Breeders Crown and earned $150,500 in four championship races to quickly pull up on the $100 million mark. The veteran reinsman is in the midst of another strong season with 283 wins, including two on Monday, and over $7.1 million in earnings. The 2016 Mohawk meet is currently in the final week of the season and Filion has already locked up another driving title. Following Monday's card, Filion is 48 wins ahead of nearest rival Doug McNair. Filion, a winner of 8,327 races, has driven the winners of over $5 million in eight consecutive seasons and his 2016 earnings total is currently only second to his single-season best of $8.6 million in 2012. The Woodbine Entertainment Group will have a presentation for Filion to recognize his $100 million milestone and his Mohawk meet driving title later this week. Autumn Series action for Ontario Sired three-year-olds made up nearly half the card Monday night. The first leg for filly pacers featured three divisions, while filly trotters clashed in a pair of preliminaries. Trilife reached up just in time to win the first leg for three-year-old pacing fillies. The Ben Wallace trainee was guided to victory by Jonathan Drury, who put the daughter of Mach Three on the front from post-eight. Trilife surrendered the lead in the second-quarter and sat in the two-hole until the lane. Never Any Doubt took the lead after driving first up on the far turn and appeared to have a victory in sight, but Trilife hit her best stride late and got up in time to win by a nose in 1:53.3. Owned by Wallacestandardbreds Inc and William Boden, Trilife now has four wins in 14 starts this season for earnings of $34,100. The sophomore pacing filly's most recent triumph gives her six career wins and a career bankroll of $53,660. Trilife paid $13.50 to win. Trilife Docs Sausalito was last at the opening-quarter, but first at the wire for driver Travis Cullen and trainer Nick Gallucci in the second pacing filly division. The daughter of Art Colony was put into the outside flow heading to the half and was eventually sixth, but just a little over three-lengths from the lead at the three-quarter pole. In the stretch, Docs Sausalito powered by her rivals to take the second division by a length in 1:54.3. Queenofthejungle finished second, while Acefourtyfour Alex was third. Docs Sausalito now has four wins in 17 starts and $46,990 earned this season for owner Dr. Andrew Roberts. Monday's victory increases the pacing filly's career totals to five wins and $48,072 earned. The Gallucci trainee paid $11.70 to win. Docs Sausalito Top Royal grinded out a 1:54.1 victory in the third and final pacing filly division. Driven by Phil Hudon, Top Royal got away fourth and followed a second-quarter brushing Tempus Seelster towards the front. Top Royal did not overtake Tempus Seelster on the backside and had to grind away first over for the duration of the mile. Top Royal muscled by Tempus Seelster in the lane, but then had to fight off a charging Jimbelina to get the job done by a neck. Tempus Seelster finished third. A daughter of Royal Mattjesty, Top Royal is trained by Heather Toll, who shares ownership with Brydown Farms Inc. The sophomore pacing filly had just one win in 18 starts this season prior to Monday's contest. Top Royal's career record now sits at 8 wins and earnings of $85,410. She paid $13.60 to win. Top Roya l The opening leg of the Autumn Series for three-year-old trotting fillies featured a pair of big-fields. Fittingly on Halloween, I Want Kandy overcame a miscue at the start to come from behind for a 1:57.3 score. Driven by Rick Zeron, I Want Kandy made a break before the start and was off-stride until nearly the opening-quarter. The Anthony Montini trainee was 25 lengths from the lead at the opening-quarter. I Want Kandy did her best to rejoin the group and things would ultimately work out for her. The daughter of Angus Hall was ninth and about nine-lengths from the front turning for home, but her rivals weren't offering much trot in the lane and she rallied by to win by a length and a half. Devils Advocate finished second, while Dayliner was third. The AGCO Judges reviewed the break made by I Want Kandy for several minutes, but determined the filly lost ground while on a break and made her the official winner. Owned by Albina Montini, Paul Giammichele, Vincent Albanese and Kwong Sum Low, I Want Kandy is now a five-time winner from 16 starts this season and a seven-time winner in her career. The sophomore trotting filly has banked $34,870 this season to bring her career earnings to $69,370. I Want Kandy paid $5.10 to win. I Want Kandy Majestic Presence didn't overcome a break to win, but the Dagfin Henriksen trainee rallied from ninth turning for home to win the second division. The daughter of Majestic Son was off the pace throughout the early stages in a field of 11. Trainer/driver Henriksen got the filly off the pylons on the far turn, but was about eight-lengths from the lead at the top of the lane. In the stretch, Majestic Presence charged by her rivals on the far outside to win by three-quarters of a length in 1:57.3. Whambamthankumaam finished second, while Trumpets was third. Owned by Gerald Haggerty, Majestic Presence was winless this season in 15 starts prior to her triumph Monday. She now has two career victories and a bankroll of $29,850. Majestic Presence paid $9.90 to win. Majestic Presence Live racing resumes Thursday evening at Mohawk with Autumn Series action for three-year-old colts and geldings on tap. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, September 3 - Beyond Delight, driven by Sylvain Filion, surged to the lead in deep stretch to win the harness racing $661,000 Metro Pace Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack. After breaking his maiden in the Metro elimination, Beyond Delight carried that momentum to a 6-1 upset in the rich final for trainer Tony O'Sullivan and owners Jeffrey & Michael Snyder and Four Friends Racing Stable LLC. Beyond Delight got away sixth in the field of ten and was able to cruise along behind a hot pace on the front. Windsong Napoleon cut an opening-quarter of :26.4, but surrendered the lead immediately to Classic Pro, who was wide around the first turn. Ocean Colony, the even money favourite, brushed from third to first in the second-quarter, but Windsong Napoleon was quickly removed to press the public's choice at the half in :54.2. Beyond Delight was angled off the pylons just after the half to follow the cover of Ideal Wheel, who was quickly rushing up on Windsong Napoleon. Ocean Colony turned aside the first-over challenger and reached the three-quarter pole in 1:22.4, while Ideal Wheel and Beyond Delight were three-wide turning for home. In the stretch, Ocean Colony's lead was quickly erased, as several horses swallowed up the leader, including a charging Beyond Delight on the far outside. The O'Sullivan trainee took the lead in the final-eighth and stormed home strongly in :27.3 to win by a length. "The pace was pretty hot, which was pretty good for us," said Filion following the victory. "I was able to get a decent trip and I knew the way he raced last week, if we could just get a decent trip we had a good shot at it." Darlings Dragon, the longest shot in the field at 60-1, stayed along the rail until splitting rivals late to finish second. Ideal Wheel was third, while Classic Pro was fourth. A son of Bettor's Delight, out of the Rocknroll Hanover mare Outtathisworld, Beyond Delight was winless in seven starts prior to the Metro Pace eliminations, but found his best stride at the perfect time of the season. "I'm actually speechless. He raced great," said O'Sullivan. "Like I said last week, he wasn't one of our better ones early on and he's gotten better and better. "That's the pleasure of training babies and the satisfaction we all get out of it and to cap it off like this, it's unreal and I'm very happy." Beyond Delight was a $50,000 yearling purchase at last year's Harrisburg Sale. Following the Metro victory, the Bettors Delight colt has two wins in nine starts and boosts his earnings to $370,568. Beyond Delight's victory gives Filion his second Metro Pace title and O'Sullivan his first. A $2 win ticket on Beyond Delight returned $14.70.   Mark McKelvie

TROIS-RIVIERES, Quebec, August 30, 2016 - The Hippodrome 3R this Sunday will host its richest harness racing program of the 2017 season with more than $500,000 in purses headlined by eight championship finals of the Quebec-Bred Series. Two and three-year-old trotters and pacers will be on display in the finals of the Breeders Cup and Future Stars Series. The finals culminate four weeks of preliminary round competition with the top eight point earners returning for the finals. The four Breeders Cup Finals for three-year-olds each goes for a purse of $65,000 and the four Future Stars Finals for two-year-olds each races for a purse of $55,000. Post time Sunday is 1:30 pm. "With a very nice weather forecast for Sunday and more than $500,000 in purse money," said Vincent Trudel, general manager at 3R. "I think this will be a super day of racing, plus we will have top drivers Daniel Dube and Sylvain Filion competing in many of the races. Perhaps we might also see a track record or two set." Here are the headliners in each of the eight championship finals. 3YO Colt Pace - Race 9 - This division will be a real slugfest as it was during the series preliminary rounds. Sports Authority (post 2) returns to 3R having competing the last month in the Ontario Sire Stakes Grassroots. Two starts back he took his lifetime mark at Kawartha Downs in 1:51.2. HP Patriote (post four) has the most impressive record this year, winning ten of his twelve starts this year and comes into the race off a 1:54 record at Rideau Carlton. Mr Mach Jimmy (post 5) was last year's two-year-old champion and beat Sports Authority at 3R three starts back in 1:56.2. 3YO Filly Pace - Race 5 - The entry of HP Sissy (post one) and HP Pandora (post 5) are the morning line favorite with HP Sissy the stronger of the two, having a record this year at Mohawk Raceway in 1:54. Wild River Swan (post four) was sharp during the series and two starts back took her lifetime mark at 1:57.2 at Georgian Downs. Miss Babe Delight (post seven) was the series champion last year but drew a tough outside post for the final. 3YO Colt Trot - Race 3 - Track record holder and last year's champion, Wildwild Men (post six) returns to 3R in prime shape, having won the Dream Of Glory Final at Hanover Raceway in 1:58.2 plus two legs of the Breeders Cup Series. He will be put to the test against a three-horse entry that includes Holiday Party (post seven), who has seven wins in twelve starts and a record of 1:57 along with Andovers Choice (post 4) and Tuscans Memory (post eight). 3YO Filly Trot - Race 6 - Carl Duguay's Y S Suzanne (post 6) has been first, second or third in her last five starts, losing two of them in photo finishes with a record of 2:01.2. Y A Jailhouse Jodi (post seven) was an easy winner in her last start in 2:02.4 and gets the driving services of Daniel Dube while Artemis Duharas (post four) enters the final off two strong second place finishes. 2YO Colt Pace - Race 8 - Makasi (post 6) has been all the talk in Quebec as two weeks ago he became the fastest freshman pacer in track history with his seven length romp in 1:55.2 on Prix D'Ete Day. He backed that mile up last week with a 1:56.3 victory. Despite being winless in four starts, Majo Lou Beka (post one) has been second or third in his last three starts and last week closed very well against Makasi to be second by only a half-length. Wildriverbumblebee (post five) has yet to finish off the board in his four starts and improves with every race. 2YO Filly Pace - Race 2 - The richest off all the two and three-year-olds racing in the finals, Yaris Bayama (post eight) sports $87,000 in earnings with four wins in just six lifetime starts for trainer Yves Filion. She has a lifetime mark of 1:52.4 at Mohawk Raceway in the Ontario Sire Stakes, is on a three-race winning streak and two starts back rewrote the track record at 3R for fillies with a 1:56.4 triumph. Queen Elsa (post one) is owned, bred and will be driven by Daniel Dube and was second and third the last two weeks to Yaris Bayama. She has a record of 1:57.1 in a baby race. Kinnderuntouchable (post seven) has won two of her four starts, both in the series. 2YO Colt Trot - Race Four - Capteur De Reve (post four) is the fastest in the field, winning last week in 2:01 with an impressive last quarter mile in :29.4 and gets Dube in the sulky for the first time. Bastiano (post six) is also a return winner in 2:03.1 while Kinnder Danerous (post two) has been first, second and third in his four lifetime starts. 2YO Filly Trot - non-wagering to be held between the 5th and 6th races - Due to the entry of Joyce Lavec (post five) and KFB Filante (post two), this is the only non-wagering race on the program. That is because Joyce Lavec has been outstanding, demolishing her competition the last two starts by a total of 44 and three-quarter lengths. In her last start she broke stride before the start and still came back to score in a romp and has won three of her four starts this year. Taurus P V (post four) has been first, second and third in her last three starts and Muscle Do (post six) has been second in her last two starts. TRACK NOTES: The championship finals have brought Yonkers Raceway star and Trois-Rivieres native, Daniel Dube back to compete in most of the races on the program along with Mohawk's leading driver and Quebec native Sylvain Filion. Saturday's program also features an Open Pace headed by Atomic Million AM and an Open Trot for older horses with the return of track record holder Seeyou Men. Racing fans are encouraged to arrive early at 3R Sunday for seating as a packed house of 5,000 fans are expected for the richest day of racing at 3R this season. For a free race program and to view the live race program on the internet, visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com. From the Quebec Jockey Club

CAMPBELLVILLE, September 1 - Ariana G and Dream Together picked up harness racing 'Grand Circuit' victories Thursday night at Mohawk Racetrack. A group of 20 rookie trotting fillies were split into two $110,566 Champlain Stakes division. Ariana G has quickly stamped herself as arguably the top two-year-old trotter in the sport and Thursday night she continued her winning ways in her Mohawk debut. The Jimmy Takter trained filly left from post five with driver Yannick Gingras and after avoiding several early breakers, the daughter of Muscle Hill cleared to the front at the opening-quarter in :29.4. Ariana G coasted through the middle-half by posting fractions of :59.1 and 1:27.4. In the stretch, the daughter of Muscle Hill glided home effortlessly in :28 for a 1:55.4 victory. Takter's other starter, That's All Moni, finished 2¼ lengths back in second, while Stuck In My Spanks edged out Magic Presto for third. Owned and bred by Marvin Katz and Al Libfeld, Ariana G is now a perfect five for five following her Champlain victory. "This is really a special filly, but watching her makes me nervous because I know how talented she is," said Katz following his filly's victory. "It's a thrill and a pleasure to be able to say we bred her and we own her and she is part of our program and system." Thursday's start was the first for Ariana G since capturing the Doherty Memorial on August 6 at The Meadowlands in a stunning 1:53.1. "The first time I saw her she was about three months old and she was a weanling out in the fields of Kentucky," noted Katz. "We saw her periodically as she grew up. "She looked like she was talented as she was developing and growing and of course last year her full-sister, All The Time, was a top performer and won the Breeders Crown as a two-year-old, so we knew that we had terrific pedigrees to go with a top individual." Ariana G has now earned $270,870 through just five starts for Katz and Libfeld. The Takter trainee paid $2.20 to win. Katz noted that if Ariana G comes out of the Champlain well, she will be back at Mohawk next week for the Peaceful Way eliminations. Ariana G Dream Together extended her win streak to four with a 1:56.2 triumph in the first division. The daughter of Muscle Hill was sent to the front by driver Sylvain Filion and posted an opening-quarter of :28.4. Sianna Hanover, the 4/5 favourite, made a second-quarter move to the front from third and led the field through middle-half fractions of :58.2 and 1:28. In the stretch, Dream Together converted off the perfect two-hole trip by edging off the back of Sianna Hanover and rocketing by. The Luc Blais trainee stormed home in :28.1 to win by 1¼ lengths over Winter Sweet Frost. Sianna Hanover didn't have much trot in the lane and faded back to finish third. A $240,000 purchase at last year's Lexington Selected Yearling Sale, Dream Together now has four wins in five starts, with her only loss coming in her career debut on July 26. Following Thursday's race, Filion noted that Dream Together didn't exactly bring her 'A' game to the Champlain. "She was very powerful tonight, but my only concern was for some reason she wasn't trotting the turns very good," said Filion. "That's the first tonight that she kind of struggled in the turns, but Luc (Blais) will solve the puzzle." Dream Together swept the Pure Ivory Series before picking up a Grand Circuit victory Thursday. The daughter of Muscle Hill now has $89,463 earned for owner Determination of Montreal, Quebec and is eligible to next week's Peaceful Way eliminations. "I'm looking forward to the next start," said Filion. "She makes me very happy and excited to be driving her." Dream Together paid $5.30 to win. Dream Together Grand Circuit action continues Friday night at Mohawk with the Champlain Stakes for two-year-old trotting colts and geldings. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 15 - The combination of harness racing driver Sylvain Filion and trainer Luc Blais has been red hot lately at Mohawk Racetrack and Monday night was no different, as they teamed up to capture the Pure Ivory Series final and Preferred Trot. A field of seven two-year-old trotting fillies competed in the $37,000 Pure Ivory Series finale. Blais trainee Dream Together entered the final off a pair of victories in the preliminary legs. A daughter of Muscle Hill, Dream Together lived up to her 1/5 billing and went gate to wire for a 1:56.1 victory. The rookie trotting filly and driver Filion set fractions of :28.2, :58.2 and 1:28.2. Pure Kemp and trainer/driver Rick Zeron made a move to confront the heavy favourite heading to the three-quarter pole. The two fillies battled it out down the lane, but ultimately Dream Together pulled away in deep stretch to win by 2¾ lengths. Pure Kemp held on for second, while Southwind Tesla finished third. Dream Together now has three wins in four starts to begin her career. Owned by Determination of Montreal, Quebec, the Muscle Hill filly was purchased for $240,000 at last fall's Lexington Selected Yearling Sale. She now has $34,180 earned in four outings. Dream Together is eligible to the upcoming Champlain and Peaceful Way Stakes. A $2 win ticket on Dream Together returned $2.70. Dream Together Also on Monday, Lookslikechpndale came through with his third win of the season in the $34,000 Preferred Trot for Filion and Blais. The four-year-old son of Muscle Hill posted a big opening-quarter of :26.4, before surrendering the lead to Musical Rhythm, the 2/5 favourite, heading to the half. Lookslikeachpndale and Filion sat the two-hole behind Musical Rhythm through middle fractions of :55.4 and 1:25.1. In the stretch, Musical Rhythm tried to sprint away, but Lookslikeachpndale angled off his back and surged by in deep stretch for the 1:52.4 victory. Owned by Determination, Lookslikeachpndale now has three wins in nine starts this season and nine victories overall. The four-year-old has banked $79,582 this season to bring his career earnings to over $200,000. The clocking of 1:52.4 slashed almost a full-second off the Blais trainee's previous career-best. Lookslikeachpndale paid $9.50 to win. Lookslikechpndale Live racing continues Tuesday night at Mohawk Racetrack. Post time is 7:30 p.m.   Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, August 8 - Dream Together followed up her 1:58.2 score last week with an impressive 1:57 triumph in the second leg of the harness racing Pure Ivory Series Monday at Mohawk Racetrack. A $240,000 yearling purchase, Dream Together defeated seven rivals in the second leg of the three-week series to set herself up for a potential sweep. The Luc Blais trainee was making her third career start and was made the favourite after her solid victory in the opening leg. Driven by Sylvain Filion, Dream Together got away third from the outside post-eight and made a move towards the front just before the half. A Doozy posted opening fractions of :28.4 and :59.1, but quickly surrendered the lead to the public's choice after the midway point. Dream Together marched the field by the three-quarter pole in 1:28.4 and finished off the mile with a comfortable 28.1 final-quarter to win by 2¼ lengths. Pure Kemp turned in a solid stretch rally to come from fifth to finish second. A Doozy was third. A daughter of Muscle Hill, Dream Together is owned by Determination of Montreal, Quebec. The Lexington Selected Yearling Sale graduate now has two wins in three starts to begin her career. Dream Together is the fifth foal out of 2007 Hambletonian Oaks winner Danae. A $2 win ticket on Dream Together returned $3.50. Dream Together The $37,000 final of the Pure Ivory Series will take place next Monday (August 15). Live racing continues Tuesday evening at Mohawk. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

CAMPBELLVILLE, July 22 - Mayhem Seelster's first win of the season Friday was not only a big win for the three-year-old filly, but also a milestone victory for her harness racing conditioner. Trainer Tony O'Sullivan picked up his 1,000th career win Friday evening at Mohawk Racetrack. The Cambridge, Ontario resident sent out sophomore pacing filly Mayhem Seelster in an $18,000 overnight event and the daughter of Mach Three came through with her first win of the season in a career best 1:51.3. Sylvain Filion steered the winner of $244,000 to victory. O'Sullivan, 40, has been a top trainer on the WEG Circuit since breaking out on his own in 2004. The New Zealand native has sent out the winners of over $1 million in earnings in 12 of 13 full seasons operating his own barn. O'Sullivan has topped $3 million in earnings on four occasions, including last season when his stable had 105 victories. Operating a successful stable on both sides of the border, O'Sullivan's stable earned over $1.1 million in the United States and over $1.8 million in Canada last season. O'Sullivan has trained many notables over his career, including Breeders Crown winner Susies Magic, Adios winner Alsace Hanover and Ontario star Love Canal. This season, O'Sullivan has sent out the winners of 56 races and over $1 million. He currently ranks third in the Mohawk meet Trainer Standings with 20 wins. Mayhem Seelster - Trainer Tony O"Sullivan's 1,000th winner Also on Friday evening, Sandbetweenurtoes got back to the winner's circle for the first time in six starts with a 1:50.4 score in the $30,000 Mares Preferred. The Richard Moreau trainee got away fifth with driver Jody Jamieson in the field of five. Bedroomconfessions made a second-quarter move to the lead from third and posted a half-mile time of :54.3. Around the final turn, Jamieson sent his charge towards the front and the even-money favourite held a half-length lead at the third marker in 1:23. In the stretch, Sandbetweenurtoes was never really challenged and looked comfortable winning in 1:50.4 by 1 ¾ lengths over Ms Mac N Cheese, who got a two-hole trip. Bedroomconfessions finished third. A five-year-old daughter of Somebeachsomewhere, Sandbetweenurtoes now has four wins in 17 outings and $80,850 earned this season. The 17-time winner has over $648,000 in career earnings and is owned by Brad Grant. Sandbetweenurtoes Live racing continues Saturday evening at Mohawk. Pepsi North America Cup champion Betting Line highlights the card in one of two $105,000 Ontario Sires Stakes Gold divisions. Post time is 7:30 p.m. Mark McKelvie

JULY 18, 2016 - From the moment Soiree Seelster arrived in Tony O'Sullivan's barn she was so laid-back the Puslinch resident occasionally wondered if something was wrong with the harness racing two-year-old pacing lass. "I was actually talking to Sylvain (Filion) about it tonight, she's, you know, she's just really, really relaxed, she always has been. She just takes everything in stride; she doesn't shy away from anything," O'Sullivan explained. "She worries me sometimes, because she's so quiet at home you think there's something wrong with her, but there's not. "When she gets to the races she sharpens up a bit, but even then, she's just very, very professional," he added. "Her attitude is really, really good." On Monday evening Soiree Seelster did her best to calm all of O'Sullivan's worries with a victory in her $70,000 Ontario Sires Stakes (OSS) Gold Series division at Mohawk Racetrack. In rein to Milton resident Filion, Soiree Seelster eased away from the centre of the starting gate and was sitting fifth when Royal Point paced by the quarter pole in :27.3. Heading for the :57.1 half Soiree Seelster stepped into the outer lane behind fan favourite Sir Native and Thorne Seelster, and the trio of fillies made steady gains on the leader through the 1:25.4 three-quarters. Turning for home Soiree Seelster was less than two lengths behind the leader and a sharp finishing kick propelled the filly to a two length victory in 1:54.2. Thorne Seelster finished second and Royal Point was five more lengths back in third. "Sylvain's taught her how to race in both the qualifiers, plus her two races," noted O'Sullivan. "Obviously we got the win tonight, but I love the way he's bringing her along." Monday's outing was Soiree Seelster's second in the Gold Series. The daughter of Big Jim and Smilesplace finished a hard-closing third in her July 5 OSS debut after logging a second in qualifying action on June 25 and a third on June 10, all three over the Mohawk Racetrack oval. O'Sullivan shares ownership of Soiree Seelster with Domenic Chiaravalle of Hamilton and Lorne Keller of Exeter, ON. The group purchased the filly out of the 2015 Forest City Yearling Sale for $53,000 and have recouped $47,600 through two starts. "She was a really good looking strong filly, as you can see on the track, and we kind of liked the pedigree and the cross and decided to just take a swing on it," recalled O'Sullivan. "She never really had a bad day - I mean I never get very high on them until they qualify - but we liked her all winter." Soiree Seelster will make her third lifetime start in the August 12 Gold Series event at Mohawk. Soiree Seelster The other two Gold Series divisions on Mohawk's Monday evening program were captured by Future Headlines and Blameitonthenight, both piloted by Milton resident Randy Waples. Sent off as the favourite in the first division, Future Headlines took command heading by the three-quarters and powered home a one and one-half length winner in 1:55. Windy Sport and Bid Writer rounded out the top three, making it a sweep for daughters of Sportswriter. Waples engineered the win for trainer Colin Johnson of Repentigny, QC and his partners Thomas Kyron of Toronto and David Heffering of Port Perry, ON. Monday's outing was Future Headlines' first, coming after a 1:54.4 win in a July 8 qualifier at Mohawk. Future Headlines Blameitonthenight captured the third Gold division, controlling the tempo for much of the mile and then waging a fierce duel with Yaris Bayama in the stretch, hanging on for a neck victory in 1:53.2. Out Of Sight finished third, three lengths behind the duelling leaders. Trainer Tony Alagna of Manalapan, NJ shares ownership of Blameitonthenight with Crawford Partners LLC of Syracuse, NY and Donna Ozment, also of Manalapan. The Mach Three daughter is now two-for-two after capturing an overnight event at Mohawk on July 12. Blameitonthenight Many of the fillies in Monday's Gold Series event will make their next start in the Battle of the Belles eliminations at Grand River Raceway on July 25, with the final slated for Aug. 1. The freshman pacing fillies will return to Gold Series action, and Mohawk Racetrack, on Aug. 12. On Tuesday, July 19, the Campbellville oval will welcome the two-year-old trotting fillies for their second Gold Series start. The fillies will face off in Races 2, 3, and 8, with racing getting under way at 7:30 pm. Ontario Racing

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