Day At The Track

MacDonald Memorial Trophy at stake Saturday

02:48 AM 21 Nov 2020 NZDT
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CHARLOTTETOWN, PE - A field of eight drivers will vie for the Paul MacDonald Memorial Trophy on Horse Person's Day Saturday afternoon at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park.

The 11-dash Saturday card gets underway at 12:30 P.M. featuring the MacDonald Memorial Driving Championship honouring the long time top reinsman at the capital oval.

The MacDonald Driving Championship, presented by the P.E.I. Standardbred Horse Owner's Association, will see eight drivers compete in eight races on the day with the top point earner grabbing the MacDonald Memorial trophy.

The event has three criteria to select the drivers with the top four reinsmen earning a spot in Marc Campbell, Gilles Barrieau, Adam Merner and Corey MacPherson. The next two drivers qualify as the top percentage pilots with over 75 starts with Steven Shepherd and David Dowling in that category. The top two drivers by average with between 30 and 75 starts also get an invite with those two being Donnie MacNeil and Dave Kelly Sr. The competition includes races 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9 and 10.

The afternoon feature in race 11 is billed the Steven MacRae Memorial pace and carries a purse of $2,500. Revenant is the morning line choice with Merner in the driver's seat for trainer Ron Gass and owner Kyla MacDonald of Stanhope. The If I Can Dream six-year-old was third his last start at the preferred level to The Rev and will leave from post 5 on Saturday. Pillage And Burn has post 2 with Ken Murphy in the bike for trainer Trevor Hicken with a streak of eight straight top-three finishes on the line. Shadow Of A Daut has rail control for driver Campbell after circling the field in his latest.

Peter MacPhee with the Post Time Picks pegs Pillage And Burn for the top spot in Saturday's feature. "Pillage And Burn has been on a huge tear the past two months and already has eight wins this season. He's also back inside for this start so don't be surprised if he's first or second again."

For race programs and a score sheet for the MacDonald Memorial Driving Challenge go to Redshores.ca and wager online at HPIBet.com.

NOTE - The province of PEI announced mask wearing will be mandatory in indoor public spaces. All harness racing participants will be required to wear masks in the paddock and ship-in barns when competing at Red Shores.

The Rev, Blood Money Show Down In Charlottetown

CHARLOTTETOWN, PE - The Rev will have a new contender for the top prize in the Sunday afternoon preferred pace at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park.

The Sunday program has 13-dashes on tap with the $2,900 preferred pace hitting the track in race 12 of the day. The Rev was a winner at the preferred level his last two starts for trainer-driver Gilles Barrieau and owner Jeff Skinner of Hammonds Plains, N.S. The 43-time winner will leave from the outside in the field of five on Sunday as he looks to duplicate his three-length victory from last week.

Blood Money ships in to Charlottetown Sunday from his new base of Saint John, N.B., and has post 2 in the top event. Dr. Mitchell Downey trains, drives and owns the winner of $430,000 who last raced in the Brian Brown barn at The Meadows in Pennsylvania. The four-year-old son of Sweet Lou made the majority of his purse money at age two in the Kentucky Sires Stakes and also won the $213,000 two-year-old pacing colt Matron Final at Dover Downs in Delaware in 2018.

Screen Test landed in the two-hole from the start last week and finished in the runner-up spot. Corey MacPherson will steer the pacer again on Sunday from post 3. Soccer Hanover moves back to the preferred level with post 1 getting Marc Campbell aboard while Cowboy Logic occupies post 4 for driver Steven Shepherd.

The Sunday Post Time Picks has The Rev as the top selection. "The Rev completely toyed with his rivals last time out with an incredible mile considering the track conditions. Is assigned the outside today and gets a fresh challenger from post 2 so this likely won't be as easy an undertaking."

The Open Trot lines up in race 9 and Mile Hill Willie will search for redemption on Sunday for driver Kenny Arsenault, trainer and co-owner Paul Morrison and co-owner John Breau of Shediac Cape, N.B. The Atlantic Champion leaves from post 6 in Sunday's $2,450 class fresh off a third place finish where he made a break in stride halfway through the mile. Other top selections are Cheeky Little Minx (To be driven by Gilles Barrieau) and Glider Man (David Dowling).

For live video and more go to Redshores.ca and wager online at HPIBet.com.

​by Nicholas Oakes, for Red Shores

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