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The Hands on Horses Program has toured South Western Ontario over the past two weekends. This past Sunday many young harness rascing fans appeared at Clinton Raceway for Kids Day and lined up for their chance to sit behind a racehorse. The previous weekend saw the program make stops at Grand River Raceway, Hiawatha Horse Park and Leamington Raceway. At all events patrons were offered the opportunity to take a ride around the racetrack between races. As an added bonus fans at Hiawatha Horse Park had the opportunity to pose and take a picture in between races with our long time program horse Hollywood Ham. Fans lined up for the unique opportunity for a picture with a racehorse. Large crowds were in attendance as legendary race announcer Roger Huston was in the house to announce the evening's races. Driver Mark Williams was thrilled to capture his 5,000th win on the card and have it announced by Roger. After the win Mark took the lines of one of the program horses and gave some happy fans a trip around the track. The following afternoon Roger met up with Mark for a congratulatory photo at Leamington Raceway where he was announcing that tracks card of racing. Roger indicated that Leamington was the 139th racetrack that he has now announced at in his illustrious career. As a special bonus Roger hopped in the jogger and gave Essex Mayor Ron McDermott a thrill as they toured the Leamington Oval together. The weekend finished off with a hockey players challenge race between the Wheatley Omstead Sharks and the Leamington Flyers. The Wannadrive team assisted with outfitting the participants and providing the two seater joggers. Special thanks to all of the trainers that provided the horse power for the event which was won by the Flyers Cale Phibbs in an exciting finish. We look forward to offering this interactive experience to racing fans across the province. For your chance to participate check out the schedule at the website Our next event will be August 27th at Georgian Downs. To see photos of all of the events visit our facebook page here. By Stacey Reinsma

CLINTON, Ontario . . . On Sunday, August 21, Clinton Raceway will celebrate 70 years of hosting harness racing at their picturesque facility. The first Standardbred race was conducted at the half-mile oval on August 21, 1946, organized by the Clinton Turf Club, a group of harness racing enthusiasts in the area. The purses were $300 and the horses were housed in tents as there were no barns at that time. The times the horses had to meet were all over two minutes and 20 seconds, while the current pacers and trotters average a mile around 2:00 flat. During that time period the race meets would have to be cancelled once every few years due to track conditions caused usually by weather. The one day meets continued for close to three decades. In 1970 the Clinton Kinsmen took on the task of hosting races as a fundraising project and operated full summer meets with great success until 1983. At that time a local not for profit business was formed to run the track with their board comprised of local business people and horse enthusiasts who continue to oversee the operation. A common theme from all three operators, The Turf Club, Clinton Kinsmen to the currently board is their commitment to promoting racing and community involvement. Regarded as one of the most successful Grassroots tracks in the province, Clinton Raceway has 15 race days in 2016 with racing every Sunday afternoon from mid May to September 4. One of its most successful initiatives has been Legends' Day which was introduced in 2001. Legends' Day brings together Hall of Fame Canadian horsemen and the biggest names in the Standardbred sport including John Campbell, Buddy Gilmour, Keith Waples, Bill O'Donnell, Mike LaChance, Ron Waples, Dave Wall and Bud Fritz. The famed horsemen meet and greet with the fans and compete on track in the Legends' Day trot. For 37 years Clinton Raceway has also hosted a very popular Drivers' Challenge featuring some of Ontario's top drivers competing against the top four drivers at the local racetracks. The Drivers' Championship and Legends' Day have raised more than $600,000 for local charities. Clinton has recently introduced opportunities for local charities to host fundraisers during every race day through auctions, bake sales and barbeques. Celebrations on August 21 to commemorate the 70th Anniversary include the second appearance of Ontario Sires Stakes, welcoming three-year-old colt trotters to the race course. Race fans will be treated to a slice of anniversary cake while welcoming the Standardbred Canada Fan Club on site with offers and promotions. A commemorative insert into the live race program will highlight the last seventy years at Clinton Raceway The Huron Heat girls hockey organization will be hosting a track side fundraiser for their upcoming 2016/17 season with a Smoked Pork Chop BBQ, 50/50 and bake sale. The late Fred Sadler of Parkhill will be honoured with a special memorial race and blanket presentation. Sadler, a well known horseman in Southwestern Ontario passed away in January of 2012. He was a fixture at both Western Fair and Clinton Raceway's, winning the Charity Driver's Challenge at Clinton in 1985. Post time for the action packed day is 1:30pm. More details can be found at   Jessica Carnochan

For the majority of the ten race harness racing card this Sunday at Clinton Raceway the sky was grey and overcast. Minutes before post to the tenth and final race, the Vic Hayter Memorial Trot, the clouds parted and sun shone warm on the backs of family and friends gathered to honour the late horseman and hotelier of Stratford.   In early spring the family had thought it would be a appropriate way to honour Vic, whom had passed away from a short, but courageous battle with pancreatic cancer in February. Plans came together to include a track side fundraiser for the Ontario Standardbred Adoption Society and the Stratford Perth Humane Society, organizations that were both near and dear to Hayter.   Through the raffle, beef bbq ticket sales and the silent auction, just over $5000 was raised for the two organizations.   The $12,500 invitational trot saw eight go to the gate for the tenth and final race of the day. Lexis D J nosed out front of the pack from post position three for a gate to wire finish for owner Shane Arsenault in a mile time of 1:59.2. A commemorative trophy was presented, which will be engraved and held at the track. Presentations were also made to the owner, trainer, driver and groom.   "It was an emotional day" states Greg Hayter, son of Vic. "even more so when Shane's horse won the race, it was the icing on the cake."   The annual event will make a return to Clinton Raceway next Summer, with hopes of becoming a yearly invitational trot. The days handle was just shy of $26,000.   Jessica Carnochan

JULY 17, 2016 - When Shanghai Sugar won her Grassroots division at Clinton Raceway on Sunday, Travis Henry and his partners experienced a moment of déjà vu. Last season Henry, Craig Wood and Glen Wark watched their two-year-old pacing filly Tempus Seelster win her July 19 Grassroots division at Georgian Downs and then go on to win her Battle of the Belles elimination at Grand River Raceway one week later. Shanghai Sugar's schedule is the same, and her connections are hoping she can match her stablemate's success. "It's exciting because last year we had kind of the same thing. We bought Tempus Seelster for $10,000 out of the London Sale and she took us on a bit of a ride, she won her Battle of the Belles elim and then she was sick in the Final actually," explained Henry. "So my partner Craig Wood said 'Battle of the Belles take two, I guess.' Hopefully we can get a better result." So far, Shanghai Sugar has followed the same path as Tempus Seelster. Acquired for just $9,000 from the Canadian Open Yearling Sale last fall, the daughter of Shanghai Phil and $563,299 winner Fast Lane Cruizin was Henry's best youngster all winter. "I started with three, and she was the best one out of them all," said the Brantford resident, who conditions the filly for Craig Wood of Waterdown, Glen Wark of St. Catharines and his mother Linda Henry of Brantford, ON. "She just was like an old racehorse the whole time. She loves her work and she has a really great attitude about everything she does." Henry and Shanghai Sugar lined up at Post 5 in the first of three $18,000 Grassroots divisions at Clinton Raceway on Sunday and were sitting fourth when Lady Sherri reached the quarter pole in :30.4. With the favourites stacked up behind him, Henry opted to send Shanghai Sugar up the outside and the filly was sitting second at the 1:01.1 half. After reeling in Lady Sherri, Shanghai Sugar sailed on to a 1:31 three-quarters and then accelerated down the stretch to a four and one-half length victory in 2:00. Odysseus and Lady Sherri paced into second and third. "I tried to quiet her down from her (July 1) qualifier because she was really aggressive, and you don't really want them like that," said Henry of the first-time starter. "So I added the hood with cups so she could kind of see behind her a little bit, and I put ear plugs in her. "When I popped the ear plugs (today), she kind of just dropped into another gear. She was really good," he added. The Battle of the Belles eliminations are Monday, July 25, with the final slated for Monday, Aug.1. Sandwiched in between is Henry's wedding to Maddi McNiven, who is the daughter of Rob and Tammy McNiven of Embro's Twinbrook Farms and an equine massage therapist based in Cambridge, ON. "That's on the 31st, and Industry Day's on the first, so we're hoping we're racing the day after our wedding, but we'll see," said Henry. The other Grassroots winners at Clinton Raceway on Sunday were Treasures Pearl and OK Jewel. Already the owner of a Grassroots trophy earned in the July 8 opener at Mohawk Racetrack, Treasures Pearl was the favourite in the second division. In spite of a field shorted to four when Mach On and Casimir QT were forced to withdraw due to sickness, the fillies delivered a lively battle, maintaining pressure on pacesetter Shewearsthepants through fractions of :30.2, 1:00 and 1:30.4. Finding a clear path in the stretch Treasures Pearl and driver Sylvain Filion of Milton sprinted to a one-half length victory in 1:59.4. The Joy Luck Club was awarded second and Shewearsthepants was demoted to third as a result of interference in the stretch. The win put Treasures Pearl firmly atop the two-year-old pacing filly Grassroots standings with 100 points. The Sportswriter daughter is trained by Ron Adams of LaSalle for owner-breeder Donald Leschied of South Woodslee, ON. The filly is the first foal from $209,445 winner St Lads Treasure. First time starter OK Jewel and driver Bob McClure also used a late sprint to claim the third Grassroots trophy. The filly reeled in pacesetter and fan favourite P L Kaleidoscope and Menagerie to score the one-half length victory in 2:00.3. Elora resident McClure engineered the win for trainer Tim Jacobson of Midhurst, ON and owner Seaspray Stables Ltd. of Nanaimo, BC. The filly is a Mach Three daughter of $332,983 winner Whitesand Jewel. Shanghai Sugar and OK Jewel will go looking for their second Grassroots trophy, and Treasures Pearl will be after her third, when the two-year-old pacing fillies make their third Ontario Sires Stakes start at Mohawk Racetrack on August 11. Ontario Sires Stakes action returns to Clinton Raceway on Sunday, August 21 when the half-mile oval hosts the three-year-old trotting colts in their fourth Grassroots outing. From the Ontario Sire Stakes

Another successful harness racing trackside fundraiser, in the Day at the Races Fundraising program took place this Sunday afternoon at Clinton Raceway. In addition to the 10 race card, race fans came out and supported Clinton Minor Baseball through the silent auction, 50/50 draw, raffle and BBQ. The handle on the days race card was just over $21,000   The local group of baseball enthusiasts was able to raise approx $5900 to be used towards diamond upkeep at both the Clinton and Holmesville locations. 185 8-18 year old players are registered in both the soft and hardball programs in the 2016 season.   Each Sunday Clinton Raceway hosts a different group, club or organization looking to raise money. Remaining fundraisers include AAA Huron Perth Lakers, Huron Heat Girls Hockey Association, Ontario Standardbred Adoption Society, Perth Stratford Humane Society, The Sunshine Foundation and The Royal Canadian Legion.   Groups that are interested in the track side fundraising program for the 2017 program at Clinton Raceway are invited to contact Jessica Carnochan ( for applications and information.   Ontario Sires Stakes make their 2016 season debut at Clinton Raceway on Sunday July 17 as two year old filly pacers hit the track. Race fans are invited to bring a friend for great offers and incentives as part of Standardbred Canada's Bring a Friend initiative, and the chance to Be A Winner courtesy of the OSS program. Visit for complete season schedule of events.   From the Media Department at Clinton Raceway

Morag and Jim Watt have been breeding and raising Standardbred racehorses on their Clinton area farm for three decades and are fixtures on Clinton Raceway's Sunday afternoon harness racing programs. This Sunday, however, their homebred filly Watt Machs Me Win will line up alongside some of Ontario's finest three-year-old pacing fillies in an elimination for the track's signature event, the Kin Pace. "It's really exciting to be able to have one to race in the Kin Pace, right here at home," said Morag Watt. "You work your whole racing career, you strive to have good horses, and to have one that's good enough to even enter is kind of a little thrill." Watt Machs Me Win heads into the $8,000 elimination with five starts under her belt this season, one over the half-mile oval at The Raceway at Western Fair District and four on the seven-eighths mile surface at Mohawk Racetrack. While she's yet to find the winner's circle, the filly has been showing steady progress. "She's just started back this year, she's only had a couple of starts, so she's still sort of racing into form," noted Watt. "We're looking forward to her three-year-old year. "We tend not to push our two-year-olds overly hard, we like to let them mature a little bit before we really ask them to exert themselves, so we sort of were conservative with her last year in her starts and in her training," Watt added. "Hopefully with a little bit of maturity she's ready to roll this year." Jim Watt taught Watt Machs Me Win her early lessons and handled training duties on the daughter of Mach Three and Feisty Form through her two-year-old campaign, but the couple opted to send her to trainer Richard Moreau in early May, after the first start of her sophomore season. "It's very unusual for us to send a horse away, but we felt that this filly showed enough potential that we wanted to give her every opportunity this summer to race in the stakes," explained Morag Watt. "It just seemed like a good strategy to send her away for the stakes season to see if she could reach her potential." The Watts hope the filly's knowledge of Clinton Raceway's half-mile surface will work to her advantage in Sunday's second race, where she faces a field that includes two fillies from the division's top tier. At the rail, Bad As Leader comes into the Kin Pace Elimination off a sixth-place result in the $438,000 Fan Hanover Final at Mohawk on June 25 and, from Post 4, Cracklin Rosie rides in on a two-race win streak including a victory in the opening leg of the Gold Series at Mohawk on June 4. "That's all part of racing, you just have to accept it," said a pragmatic Watt about the deep field. "Sometimes it doesn't play out the way that you imagine it will before the race, so that's when you depend on the driver's expertise to use his best judgement when he's behind the gate. "That's what makes it exciting and gives everyone an opportunity, because anything can happen," she added. Travis Henry will steer Watt Machs Me Win from Post 6 in Sunday's test, with the top two fillies from each of the three eliminations, along with two third-place finishers selected by random draw, advancing into the $60,000 Kin Pace Final on July 3. Sunday's eliminations are the eighth edition of the Kin Pace, named in honour of the Clinton Kinsmen, who introduced pari-mutuel wagering to Clinton Raceway in 1970. The Final takes place on the last day of the Kinsmen and Kinettes annual PlucKIN' Fest, which features a jam-packed weekend of activities kicking off with a Chicken BBQ and Craft Beer Night in the Clinton Raceway grandstand on Thursday evening. For more information about the Kin Pace Eliminations please contact Clinton Raceway at 519- 482-5270 or visit Jessica Carnochan

Monte harness racing in Ontario returned to the site where the first North American under saddle wagering race took place, as Clinton Raceway hosted two events for the monte trotters on Sunday afternoon (June 19). Alex Marion, who is RUS Ontario's sole licensed male rider, earned his first victory as 10-year-old Celebrity Legacy inherited the 2:04 score in the first C$3,000 event. Precious Phoebe reset after an early miscue and trotted to a six-length lead while Celebrity Legacy swept from last to second. Precious Phoebe and Evelyn Harms crossed the wire first with Celebrity Legacy chasing three-quarters of a length behind, however, judges ruled Precious Phoebe failed to lose ground while on a break and she was placed sixth. Celebrity Legacy, a son of Windsong’s Legacy, is owned by trainer Felix Marion and Krystel Simard. The victory was his first under saddle, after 22 wins to sulky. Harms won later aboard trotting mare Southwind Alice in the other C$4,000 monte race. Southwind Alice overtook Massive Muscles and Marit Valstad to win by a length in 2:03.4. The five-year-old Muscle Hill mare, an 11-time career winner, has now won successive RUS events for trainer David Dowling and owner Allan Neal. Handle on the two RUS events totaled C$3,267, compared to the total program handle of C$18,294, or an average/race of C$1,829 on the ten race card/ Thomas H. Hicks

It was a day of greats at Clinton Raceway, as the Huron County oval held it's opening card of the 2016 harness racing season. Great weather, great races and great prizes all lead to a record attendance and record handle. The 10 race card saw a wagering handle of just over $30,000. "This was the biggest opening day that Clinton has seen, almost ever" states Director of Marketing, Jessica Carnochan. "The weather was definitely in our favor, if people were on the fence, that was the deal maker". Super Sunday show fans were treated to new games between the races with lots of fun and prizes. Two lucky winners went home with a pair of tickets to see Carrie Underwood in London next week and a $500 garden package courtesy of Verbeeks Farm and Garden in Clinton. Central Huron Secondary School was able to raise just over $2800 during their trackside fundraiser. "We really appreciate the ability that Clinton Raceway has given us over the last years to fundraise, comments chair, and teacher at C.H.S.S. Leigh Melady. "The fans have continued to support us and we're great full for their generosity." Long time race caller, Frank Salive made his return to the mic for opening day, and will be back again when live racing resumes Sunday May 29 with a post time of 1:30pm. The day will belong to the Saugeen Maitland Women's Hockey Association and their Day at the Races fundraiser. A full calendar of events can be found at Jessica Carnochan  

CAMPBELLVILLE, April 28 - The deadline for nominations to the Alliance Spring Series is this Monday (May 2). A total of 11 events will be contested as part of the Alliance Spring Series. Flamboro Downs, The Raceway at Western Fair, Clinton Raceway, Grand River Raceway and Georgian Downs will all host series races. The Alliance Spring Series offer racing opportunities for $6,000 and $12,000 claimers, along with four-year-olds and younger who are non-winners of $5,000. Flamboro Downs will host two series finals on Confederation Cup night (May 15), while Western Fair will also host a pair of series finals on Molson Pace night (May 27). The nomination fee for each series is $100 ($75 USD) and the Woodbine Entertainment Group will handle all payments. To view the full conditions for each series and nomination form to the Alliance Spring Series, click here. To make payments online, click here. by Mark McKelvie - WEG Communications

CLINTON, ON -- A full crowd and sunny skies provided the backdrop for Clinton Raceway's eighth annual Legends Day harness racing event on September 6.   The bi-annual event began in 2001 as a celebration of Canadian harness racing's most accomplished drivers. The beloved afternoon race card also serves as a major fundraiser for local groups, institutions and charities within the small, rural community.   This year's benefactor is the Clinton Public Hospital Foundation. The track's efforts included an online auction featuring 40 items which grossed $9,650 an on track Pineridge Chicken BBQ and 50/50.   For racing fans, the highlight of the afternoon was the opportunity to meet the extraordinary group of drivers competing in the Legends Day Trot: John Campbell, Doug Brown, Mike Lachance, Bill O'Donnell, Steve Condren, Dave Wall, Ray Remmen and Ron Waples.   Collectively, they have driven horses to purse earnings of nearly $1 billion and captured almost 60,000 wins. The Great Eight, plus fellow Hall Of Famers Keith Waples and Bud Fritz greeted racing enthusiasts of all ages. Throngs of them lined up in glee, clutching various racing memorabilia to be inked during the hour-long autograph session.   The winner of the $15,000 Legends Day Trot was Dave Wall with Brandon Cs. The longest shot on the board at 9-1, Wall steered the six-year-old gelding to his 22nd career win. Leaving from post four, the duo took control of the field by the half-mile marker and cruised home to a two-length win in a new career best of 1:57.3. Brandon Cs is owned by trainer Janice Annett of Wyoming, ON, and Marjorie Simmons of Chatham, ON.   Wall, of Komoka, ON, is a lifetime winner of 7,179 races and $58 million in purses.   The track also paid tribute to driving legends Jim Doherty and Buddy Gilmour with a memorial race and blanket presentations following Race 7.   Doherty passed away in March of this year at the age of 74. Throughout his career, he drove winners of 4,620 races and nearly $39 million in purses. He was an integral part of Legends Day since 2003.   Buddy Gilmour, a native of Lucan, ON, won 5,381 races and $44 million in purse earnings throughout his colourful career. He actively participated in the inaugural Legends Day in 2001 and again in 2003, returning as a guest through 2009. He passed away in 2011 at the age of 78.   The track also featured a memorial dash in Race 8 for Lorenzo Lamarra, a longtime employee of United Tote and a fixture at Clinton Raceway, who passed away suddenly this winter.   Total handle for the 11-race card was $60,818 -- a substantial jump from the 2013 Legends Day handle of $48,311 (which was based on 12 races).   Jessica Carnochan

CAMPBELLVILLE, September 2 - The title of legend has never been thrown around lightly. To become a legend requires great success, recognition at the highest level and admiration from your peers. In the world of harness racing, a select group of individuals have earned the right to be considered legendary and every few years a group of these extraordinary horsemen gather in Central Huron, Ontario. Icons of the sport have returned every other year since 2001 to Clinton Raceway for Legends Day. John Campbell, a man known as Mr. Harness Racing and forever etched in racing lore, has been a part of every Legends Day and will be back once again this year. "It's just a lot of fun," Campbell said. "It really shows the enthusiasm that people have for harness racing. For us as participants it's a chance to go back and the camaraderie is great, seeing people you haven't seen in a few times, a lot of these people I see them every other year at Clinton." Campbell, a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame, continues to be amazed by the energy from the racing fans that show up every other year for this special day. Many of the fans take the time to share their favourite memories with the legends. "It's very humbling," said Campbell. "It feels great that people have followed my career and remember races that have stood out that I've been successful in. It's a little nostalgic for sure, but certainly in a good way and just nothing but great memories of every Legends Day." The return to a small-community racetrack offers Campbell the opportunity to reflect on his roots growing up in the sport. The Hall of Famer has over 10,000 driving victories, $297 million in earnings and a victory in every major race, but it was small-community tracks where his legendary career began. "Western Fair was my first drives, but I spent quite a bit of time at Dresden, Goderich and Woodstock," recalls Campbell. "So it was certainly a stepping stone for me and it does bring me back to those roots. "It brings it back to an appreciation of where I started and there are people starting out there right now that are going to go on to bigger and better things from Clinton and places like that." Legends Day offers fans the opportunity to get autographs, photos and share stories with harness racing icons. The chance to rub shoulders with the elite does not present itself every day, but rarer is the chance to watch a full field of Hall of Famers compete in a race. "I spoke about the camaraderie among the Hall of Famers, but all that goes out the window when we turn in behind the gate," laughed Campbell, who had his three-race win streak in the Legends Day Trot snapped in 2013. "Everybody wants to win it, there is no question about that." A strong crowd is expected to turnout Sunday, September 6 for the eighth edition of Legends Day. Campbell is looking forward to another special day and recognizes the importance of the event to not only Clinton, but also the sport. "It's really a special treat for myself and I know the other Hall of Famers to participate in it. It's just a great day and I think it's a great day for the industry." Legends Day is a special event circled on calendars, a must-visit for the biggest harness racing fan and a reminder of the humble roots from which the sport began. The enthusiasm at Clinton Raceway for Legends Day is impressive and Campbell expects to get a workout with the Sharpie. "When we sign autographs, the line just never stops." For more information on Legends Day, visit Mark McKelvie

AUGUST 9, 2015 - Nine divisions of two-year-old pacing fillies invaded Clinton Raceway on Sunday afternoon and in the eighth Grassroots split Bourbon Seelster rewrote the half-mile oval's harness racing history books. Starting from Post 5, driver Mike Saftic of Campbellville, ON sent Bourbon Seelster straight to the front and rang up evenly-rated early fractions of :30.1 and 1:00.2. Heading for the three-quarters Saftic picked up the tempo, reaching the marker in 1:29.4, but when fan favourite Divas Image mounted a challenge in the stretch Bourbon Seelster really poured it on, sprinting home in :27.2 to reach the wire in a track record 1:57.1. Divas Image settled for second, three-quarters of a length behind the winner, and Where Are We rounded out the top three. The win was the second in Grassroots action for Bourbon Seelster, who posted her first in the July 19 contest at Georgian Downs. Watford, ON resident Robert Manders conditions the daughter of Camluck for Scott and Keith Manders, also of Watford, who purchased her for $14,000 from the Forest City Yearling Sale. Trainer Dave Menary won three of the nine Grassroots divisions, teaming up with driver James MacDonald for two and Kevin Sizer for the third, and also picked up one second and one third with his six starters. "It was pretty lucky," said the Cambridge, ON resident. "It would be nice to have six Gold fillies, but we were the masters of Clinton today." Menary and MacDonald's first victory came in the second division with Twin B Virtue, who battled to a neck victory over Jimmys Little Girl in 1:58.4. Life Book finished two and one-quarter lengths behind the duelling leaders in third. "Her last two starts she's been right on the front and end and I really think this filly's a lot better off a helmet or off a little trip, but when you're racing on a half-mile track you can't always work that out," noted Menary. "She got run at and headed the whole way, and dug in, and I was super happy with the filly." Menary shares ownership of Twin B Virtue with Brad Gray of Dundas, ON and Michael Guerriero of Puslinch, ON. The partners acquired the daughter of Badlands Hanover for $32,000 from the Canadian Yearling Sale last fall and through four starts the filly has returned $20,600. The trainer and driver were back in the winner's circle after the fifth division with Rosy Outlook. Starting from Post 2 Guelph, ON resident MacDonald put the Badlands Hanover daughter on the front end and she led through all stations on the way to her first lifetime victory in 1:59.4. Fan favourite Selling The Dream closed hard, but fell one-quarter length short, while Kyrstal C was well back in third. "Today she raced very greenly," said Menary, who added that MacDonald felt her attention wavered significantly through the final quarter. "I definitely have faith in the filly that she's going to get better." Blue Chip Bloodstock Inc. of Wallkill, NY own Rosy Outlook, who was a $10,000 purchase out of the Harrisburg Yearling Sale. After debuting in the Gold Series on July 6, where she finished eighth, Rosy Outlook finished third in the July 19 Grassroots event at Georgian Downs. Menary's third victory came in the last Grassroots division when driver Kevin Sizer of Morriston, ON took Norcross Blue Chip gate-to-wire for her first win. The Bettors Delight daughter finished two lengths ahead of Endless Legacy and favourite State Of Joy in 1:58.1. "This is a filly that I thought was one of my best all winter. She had little problems with the efficiency of her gait, so I spent a lot of time going with this filly, and Kevin Sizer's done a great job with this filly -he works for me - he's done a great job with this filly and he did a great job today," said Menary. "She's been behind all the way, but catching up rapidly." The trainer shares ownership of Norcross Blue Chip with Michael Guerriero, Denis Breton of Welland, ON and Thomas Kyron of Toronto, ON. A $30,000 purchase at the Harrisburg Yearling Sale, the filly has two starts under her belt, Sunday's win and a fourth in a July 31 conditioned event at Grand River Raceway. The other Grassroots divisions were captured by Trilife, St Lads Smokin Hot, P L Jasmine, My Rhythm Of Rhyme and Miss Babe Delight. Trilife kicked things off in the first division with a 1:58.1 score for driver Anthony MacDonald of Guelph, trainer Larry Ainsworth of Petrolia, ON and owner-breeder William Boden of Vancouver. The Mach Three lass hit the wire two and one-quarter lengths ahead of Menary trainee No Shadows and Northern Prima to record her first Grassroots victory. St Lads Smokin Hot recorded her first lifetime victory in the third division, sailing along on the front end to a 2:00.2 win over Sports Expert and This Day Forward. Arthur, ON resident Trevor Henry engineered the No Pan Intended daughter's successful effort for trainer Richard Moreau of Puslinch and Holland Racing Stable of Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON. A gritty first-over trip netted P L Jasmine her second straight victory, and first Grassroots trophy, in the fourth division. The Badlands Hanover daughter and driver Scott Coulter of Brantford, ON cruised home five and one-half lengths ahead of Watt Machs Me Win and Menary trainee Green Light in 1:58.3. Robert McMillan of Beaverton, ON conditions P L Jasmine for owner-breeder Prince Lee Acres of Uxbridge, ON. Paul MacDonell and My Rhythm Of Rhyme never faced a challenge on their way to a two and one-quarter length win in the sixth division. The Shadow Play daughter stopped the Clinton teletimer at 1:59.1, besting Dancin In the Nude and favourite Boozer Bruiser. Guelph resident MacDonell shares ownership of first-time winner My Rhythm Of Rhyme with his wife Lynn MacDonell. Miss Babe Delight also made winning look easy, pacing home three lengths ahead of Action Big and Bad Lightning in Race 7. Milton, ON resident Sylvain Filion piloted the Bettors Delight filly to her first win in 1:58.2 for trainer Dany Fontaine of Lachenaie, QC and owner Ecurie Gaetan Bono Inc. of Montreal, QC. The two-year-old pacing fillies start the second half of their Grassroots season at Mohawk Racetrack on August 24. Ontario Horse Racing

Six divisions of two-year-old trotting colts put on an exciting show during Ontario Sires Stakes Super Sunday at the harness racing meeting at Clinton Raceway. Gonna Fly trotted into the Clinton oval's history books with a 2:02.2 track record in the second $18,000 division, taking command in the backstretch and pulling away to a four and one-quarter length victory over Eyeseenow and Cooper. Arthur, ON resident Trevor Henry crafted the win for trainer Bob McIntosh of Windsor, ON. "He trained down no problems whatsoever. I don't think he hardly even made a break the whole time training down," said McIntosh of the homebred Gonna Fly. "He's super gaited and super good on the half-mile track, he can trot the turns faster than he can trot a straightaway. "I wish all the races were on a half," added the trainer with a chuckle. "He's a handy little cat on a half." McIntosh and Earl Hill Jr. of Ohsweken, ON share ownership of the Kadabra colt Gonna Fly, who peeled two-fifths of a second off the former track record, set by Oratorio in 2006. Local colt Warrawee Rob captured the third Grassroots division for trainer Heather Toll of Dungannon, ON and owners Janet and Murray Bradshaw's 574238 Ontario Inc. of Waterford. Starting from Post 2 the Angus Hall son and driver Scott Coulter roared out to a seven-length lead before the :29.4 quarter, reached the half in 1:01.3 and the three-quarters in 1:33.4 and dug in down the stretch to secure the three-quarter length victory in 2:04.2. "He gets a little bit aggressive, I guess you could say. He knows his job and it's his home track, so I figured he'd probably leave a little bit," said Toll. "At the three-quarters he kind of came back to Scott, because that's the way he usually does when we train him, and then when he sees the other one coming he digs back in." Toll and the Bradshaw's were joined in the winner's circle by a number of family and friends who all enjoyed Ontario Sires Stakes Super Sunday at Clinton, which featured giveaways, the "Guess with Jess" trivia contest and an opportunity to drive a racehorse. "The people from Seelster's all came down today because of Heineken (Seelster), and they came back to the barn, and they were really happy and just loved the environment in Clinton," said Toll, whose other colt, Heineken Seelster, finished fifth behind Gonna Fly. "It's friendly, it's an open atmosphere and everybody gets along. It's fun, the kids can come and swim in the pool because it's free, and it's a nice relaxing day for people to come and enjoy the business, which is great. "Everybody coming out today was a great thing," she continued. The other Grassroots divisions went to Ginger Road, Wildwild Men, The Land Shark and Muscle Time. Ginger Road kicked off the afternoon's festivities with a 2:04.2 victory for driver Lorne House of Ingersoll, ON trainer Fred Jamieson of Putnam, ON and his partners Renato Confortin of London, ON and Karl Empey of Mossley, ON. The Holiday Road gelding bested favourite Holiday Bro and Leroys Dream. Fan favourite Wildwild Men moved into a tie for top spot in the division point race with his 2:06.2 triumph over Terrain Seelster and Kronwall in the fourth division. Robert Shepherd of Cambridge, ON engineered the 10 and one-half length win for trainer Isabelle Darveau of Cambridge, ON and owners Catheline Pelletier of Mirabel, QC and Chantal Gravel of St.-Cyrille-de-Wendover, QC. Second in the Grassroots season opener, the Muscle Mass son now boasts a point tally of 75. Driver Alfie Carroll of Iona Station, ON piloted The Land Shark to a 2:05.2 win in the fifth division for trainer Richard Moreau of Puslinch, ON and his partner 9099 3833 Quebec Inc. of Sorel-Tracy, QC. The Manofmanymissions colt reeled in pacesetter United BI and pocket sitter Bipartisan Hanover in the stretch to earn the quarter length victory, his first. Petrolia, ON resident Darryl Laver steered Muscle Time to a gritty neck victory in the final division, hitting the wire in 2:02.4, a neck in front of JLs Bad Moon Risin and Bow Ties N Bourbon. Laver bred, owns and trains Muscle Time, who is a Muscle Mass son out of his $324,264 winning race mare Spare Time Rozie. The two-year-old trotting colts make their third Grassroots appearance at Mohawk Racetrack on July 28. Ontario Sires Stakes action returns to Clinton Raceway on Sunday, Aug. 9 with Grassroots action for the two-year-old pacing fillies. Ontario Horse Racing

JULY 17, 2015 - Clinton Raceway is hosting Ontario Sires Stakes Super Sunday this weekend, and the stars of the harness racing show will be six divisions of two-year-old trotting colts and geldings competing in their second Grassroots event. Heather Toll will harness two colts during the Super Sunday festivities and the Dungannon, ON resident is hoping hometown advantage pays off for Heineken Seelster and Warrawee Rob. "I would think hometown advantage is kind of nice," said the trainer. "With baby trotters Clinton is always tough, and so is the swimming pool because they're all a little leery of that, but hopefully due to the fact that we're around it all the time it won't be so scary. "Hopefully there's a hometown advantage, but you never know. We'll know Sunday afternoon," she added with a chuckle. Heineken Seelster will make his second Grassroots start from Post 3 in the second $18,000 Grassroots division for Toll and owners Stan Henderson of Denfield, ON and Susan Clarke of Strathroy, ON. The colt, a Federal Flex half-brother to Goodtimes Stake winner Hemi Seelster, finished fifth in his provincial debut at Georgian Downs on July 11. "Stan Henderson does a lot of the breeding at Seelster, and he's the one that picked him out," said Toll of Heineken Seelster, who was an $8,000 purchase from the Forest City Yearling Sale. "He's been their vet for years, but it's his first Standardbred and we ended up with him in our barn, so that's nice." Warrawee Rob gets Post 2 in the third split, and will be looking to match or better the fourth-place result he posted in the Georgian Downs event. Janet and Murray Bradshaw of Waterford, ON own the Angus Hall son through their 574238 Ontario Inc. company and offered up $13,000 to acquire him from the Canadian Yearling Sale. Brantford, ON resident Scott Coulter drove both colts in their Grassroots debut and will be back in the race bike on Sunday. "There's a third filly that Murray owns as well, with his brother Dave, and the three trotters basically trained together all winter and have a good head on their shoulders, so that really helps," noted Toll. "And it's surprising because the three trotters were the first - well, three out of the first four babies of our eight - that made it. Usually the pacers have the better brain, but not his year, the trotters seem to be doing a lot a better. It's unique, but that's good." The colts will be hoping to continue the stable's successful start in front of their hometown cheering section, which will also be entertained by a host of Ontario Sires Stakes giveaways. The first fans to arrive will receive a free OSS t-shirt with their program purchase, OSS ball caps will be awarded to the winners of trackside trivia contest "Guess with Jess", and young fans can join in an OSS colouring contest. The two-year-old trotting colts are featured in Races 1, 2, 3, 6, 8, and 9 on Sunday's program, with the first division rolling in behind the Clinton Raceway starting gate at 1:30 pm. Ontario Horse Racing

Former Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jesse Barfield admits he doesn’t have any experience with horses, but he’s looking forward to meeting harness racing fans Sunday (July 12) at Clinton Raceway in support of Clinton Minor Baseball. Barfield played 14 years in the Major Leagues for Toronto (1981 to ’89) and the New York Yankees (’89 to ’92). While with the Jays, Barfield won gold gloves in 1986 and 1987 and was also an all-star in ’86, the same year he won the American League home run title and the Silver Slugger award. “Most fans want to know what it was like playing in Toronto versus New York and I tell them I thoroughly enjoyed playing in both cities and for both teams,” Barfield said. “Both cities are culturally diverse and are great baseball towns with a good fan base. Of course, the Yankees have such a rich history, and it was exciting wearing the pin stripes. And with the Blue Jays it was nice going from worst to first with mostly homegrown players. Barfield, known for his great arm in the outfield, said he likes to teach young outfielders to, “stay focused on defense when you are in the field and anticipate the ball being hit to you that way your reaction time is sharper and you get a better jump on the ball.” The rise of the Blue Jays in the 1980s and 1990s is believed to have had a positive impact on Canadian youth baseball, particularly in Ontario. Barfield said Canadian kids are “very eager to learn and get better” and “are fundamentally sound because of the quality of coaches that they have access to.” Barfield will appear at Clinton from 3:30-5:30 p.m. The races start at 1:30 p.m. A silent auction will include two tickets anywhere Air Canada flies. The Pineridge Barbecue Company will serve a chicken dinner under the grandstand from 4-5 p.m. for $15 per person. Takeout will be available. The former Toronto Blue Jays all-star slugger will be available for photos and autographs from 3:30-5:30 in support of Clinton Minor Baseball. For more information, please visit: Dave Briggs Standardbred Communications Ontario Horse Racing

JUNE 21, 2015 - Ontario's talented three-year-old pacing colts put on an impressive show for Clinton Raceway harness racing fans on Sunday afternoon, kicked off by a 1:54.4 mile from Maracasso in his second straight Grassroots win. In rein to Phil Hudon, Maracasso fired to the front from Post 3 and sprinted through sharp early fractions of :28.2 and :55.1 that put him seven lengths in front of the field. In spite of cooling the tempo through the 1:24.2 three-quarters, Maracasso still hit the wire two and three-quarter lengths ahead of Bob Ben And John. Fan favourite The Fire Within was 10 more lengths back in third. "He was actually hitting the bike; he was wound up," said Guelph, ON resident Hudon after the race. "So I just let him do what he wanted to, I would have took a lot out of him fighting him. And then up the backside I just tried to get as much real estate as I could, and it worked. "He raced good, he raced super - it was a great mile. Made my day anyways; I was happy," added the reinsman, who drove Maracasso to the win for trainer John Williamson of Waterdown, ON and his co-owner Daniel Haist of Ridgeville, ON. The victory puts Maracasso at the top of the three-year-old pacing colt and gelding Grassroots standings with 100 points, earned through his wins at Clinton on Sunday and at Mohawk Racetrack on June 2. The Lis Mara son has tallied $19,120 through five starts this season. Eight races later Hudon's mood was further elevated when he teamed Jeb to a 1:56.1 victory for trainer James "Friday" Dean of Guelph, ON and owners Wilma and James MacKenzie of Ennismore, ON. "He raced good. I just ended up cutting it out, got good fractions and let him kick home," said Hudon of Jeb's victory. "He's a nice little horse. He's a trip horse, but I figured on the small tracks you want to be on the front if you can get there." Starting from Post 1 in the ninth race, Jeb rang up fractions of :28.1, :58 and 1:27.1 on his way to the half-length victory over Deseronto and Charlottes Colony. The Camluck colt benefitted from an early speed duel that saw Deseronto and driver Trevor Henry thwart Naturescape and driver Doug McNair in their efforts to reach the front end. "If Trevor can't keep Dougie out in the turn, I would have been sitting third probably, so it worked out good. Just one of those days when everything works," said Hudon. Moffat, ON resident Jody Jamieson gave his father Carl a fitting Father's Day gift when he piloted Make Some Luck to a 1:56.1 victory in the fourth Grassroots division. Make Some Luck prevailed by one and one-quarter lengths in spite of a tough trip that saw him sit in the outer lane through much of the mile. "He wasn't well driven, but he was well prepared by my Dad on Father's Day," quipped the younger Jamieson, who owns the Camluck gelding and was joined in the winner's circle by his own son Jett. The win, over Pace Seelster and pacesetter Alexas Prayer, boosted Make Some Luck's 2015 Grassroots record to one win and one third for a total of 62 points. Driver Doug McNair of Guelph, ON also teamed his father Gregg's horse to a win in the second Grassroots division. The younger McNair sent Mac Raider straight to the front from Post 5 and the Mach Three gelding cruised home a four and three-quarter length winner in 1:56.4. The fan favourites bested Draft Seelster and Mister Big Top. Guelph, ON resident Gregg McNair shares ownership of Mac Raider with Leonard Gamble of Etobicoke, ON, Don MacDonald and David Kryway of Amherstburg, ON. Jeremes Jet son Win One Soon captured the third Grassroots division, reeling in pacesetter Camvicted and Myhoneytellsall in the stretch. Sylvain Filion of Milton, ON engineered the1:57 victory for trainer Patrick Fletcher of Hagersville, ON and owner Ronald Ash of Desboro, ON. After starting his season at the Gold Series level, Southwind Indy found the Grassroots competition more to his liking, sailing around the Clinton half-mile to a 1:56.3 win for driver Chris Christoforou of Campbellville, ON, trainer Casie Coleman of Cambridge, ON and owners West Wins Stable of Cambridge, ON, Steve Calhoun of Chatham, ON and Southwind Farms LLC of Pennington, NJ. The Sportswriter son reached the finish two lengths ahead of Regal Sight and Mach Code. Sylvain Filion made his second trip to the Grassroots winner's circle in the final division, steering Western Bayama to a come-from-behind victory in 1:57.2. Stephane Larocque of Carlisle, ON trains the Lis Mara colt for owner-breeders Bayama Farms Inc. of Saint-Andre-D'Argenteuil, QC. Sports Lightning and Halton Hurricane completed the triactor in the final division. Through the seven Grassroots contests and three overnight races, Clinton Raceway fans wagered a grand total of $38,000. Fans also donated generously to the Seaforth Public School playground equipment fundraiser, pushing the school $4,500 closer to their goal. Ontario Sires Stakes action returns to Clinton on Sunday, July 19 with the second Grassroots event for the two-year-old trotting colts and geldings. The third Grassroots event for the three-year-old pacing colts and geldings goes postward at Georgian Downs on July 4. Ontario Horse Racing

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