Day At The Track

Musical Rhythm a perfect 10 in Don Mills final

02:59 PM 24 Apr 2016 NZST
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Musical Rhythm
Musical Rhythm crushed his five rivals with a five and a half lengths victory in 1:52.4
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Musical Rhythm

Musical Rhythm scored his 10th consecutive victory Saturday night in the harness racing $42,600 Don Mills Trotting Series final at Mohawk Racetrack.

The Ben Baillargeon trainee crushed his five rivals with a five and a half lengths victory in 1:52.4 to easily sweep the three-week Don Mills Series.

Driven by Mario Baillargeon, Musical Rhythm got away third before brushing to the front in the second-quarter. The 1-9 favourite posted fractions of :56.2 and 1:25.3 before trotting home confidently in :27.1 for his eighth victory of the season.

Hillsonator finished second, while Musical Rhythm's stablemate Grana Padanno was third.

Musical Rhythm was purchased for $33,000 last November at the Harrisburg Mixed Sale and has since won 11 of 12 starts and earned $152,300 for owners Santo & Nunzio Vena, Claude Hamel and Ben Baillargeon.

A four-year-old son of Cantab Hall, Musical Rhythm improved his career totals to 17 wins and over $200,000 earned with his Don Mills Series final victory.

Following Saturday's race, Ben Baillargeon explained what his initial expectations were for Musical Rhythm.

"I liked about him that he fit the non-winners of three or $75,000 and the General Brock Series," said Baillargeon. "I thought he was a nice horse, a fast horse and he showed a quarter in :26.4 as a two-year-old, so that's what I look for at the sale, I like when they have speed.

"For some reason this year he has put it together and he has been nothing but good for me. The hopple broke the one time he ran at the gate or else he would be perfect."

While Musical Rhythm has exceeded expectations, his connections are enjoying the pleasant surprise and have staked him heavily to top events this season.

"We put him in the Graduate Series starting in a month at The Meadowlands, so he will probably race one time before we go there," noted Baillargeon. "But this week he is going to hit the field."

Musical Rhythm's victory gives Baillargeon his second consecutive Don Mills Series final win. Last year, Etruscan Hanover won the series finale in a record 1:52.2.

Musical Rhythm has quickly made a name for himself in 2016 and Baillargeon noted he isn't sure just how good the four-year-old can be.

"I know he's a better horse off a helmet because he wants to go when you pull on the right line, but time will tell."

Four and five-year-old trotters, who were non-winners of $150,000 lifetime as of December 31, 2015, were eligible to the Don Mills Trotting Series.

Live racing resumes Monday night at Mohawk Racetrack. The Blossom Series final will highlight the 10-race program. Post time is 7:30 p.m.

Mark McKelvie

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