Day At The Track

Trois-Rivieres, QC - It is most certainly crunch time this Sunday with the third and final preliminary round of the Quebec-Bred Series for four and five-year-old pacers at the Hippodrome 3R. These harness racing horses must perform at their best in order to secure points to be one of the eight finalists in the $30,000 finals on a special night, Thursday, August 9. The first division is the third race for the horses and the morning line favorite is Dance With Joe from post three. This five-year-old son of Roll With Joe was razor sharp in his last start, winning the second leg of the series with true grit and stamina. He was challenged early in the mile and would not give up the lead for driver Pascal Berube and went on to win in 1:55.3. That was his fourth triumph of the year at H3R and now Dance With Joe is tied with Kinnder Jackson, also with four wins, as the two winningest horses at H3R this season. Dance With Joe starts from post three and has won four of his last five starts for trainer Christine Davignon and owner Daniel Dulude of Ste-Martin. Last year's three-year-old champion, Wildriverbumblebee, goes from post four and hopefully trainer Francis Richard will have this son of Sportswriter ready for action. He tried to lead from start to finish in his last start in the Invitational pace but spit out the bit at the top of the stretch and finished seventh for driver Stephane Brosseau. C L Sportaction is another major contender from post six for driver Jonathan Lachance. In his last start in the series he was parked first-over from the start, held his ground for most of the mile and then finished a tired fourth. The mares are in the spotlight in the eighth race where seven of the eight starters have all won at least one race in their last three starts. The big question will be how HP Sissy (post five) will do for driver Stephane Brosseau. This top mare by Up The Credit won $141,000 last year with nine triumphs, including the Breeders Cup final at H3R and in the top classes at Yonkers Raceway. HP Sissy was a big winner before coming to Quebec. She had won at Pocono Downs in 1:53.1. Bred and co-owned by Claude Hamel with Michel Damphousse, she is now in the capable hands of trainer Jean Tourigny who is a bit distressed with his mare, who finished third in a photo in her last start in the series. "I am worried about her," Tourigny explained. "Because her breathing is not good and she is way over stressed. "I do not know how she will behave on Sunday. If she is less stressful and breathing a lot better we will find out. We need to race Sunday and make sure she is eligible to the final. "I am at a loss of how to get her better for the future," Tourigny added. Another top mare who also needs a big performance on Sunday is Queen Elsa, the two-year-old champion at H3R. She starts from post two for driver Stephane Gendron, but in her last start she was on the outside and could not gain ground, finishing fifth. There are three return winners in the race, Skyfall Sena (post three), Art De Gagnee (post four) and Wild River Swan (post one), who all won their last start. Skyfall Sena was a 1:57.4 victor by a nose against Imagine Speed (post eight) in the series. Art De Gagnee won just last week with a lifetime mark of 1:56.2 for driver Pierre Luc Roy while Wild River Swan (post one), who is the full younger sister to Wildriverbumblebee, is coming of a 1:58.2 triumph on the Quebec Fair Circuit. First race post time is 12:50 pm. You can get a free race program by visiting, Next Tuesday, first race post time at the Hippodrome 3R will be pushed ahead to 7:15 pm due to a motorcycle event taking place. From the Quebec Jockey Club  

ELORA, ON - In his bio, 15 pound Dashpig was described as "brave as a wolf dog". The mighty Dachshund churned that courage into victory, holding on to win the fourth annual Ren's Pets Wiener Dog Races at Grand River Raceway on July 6. The four-year-old nosed out defending champion Mustard and a quick charging Jerry in the field of nine. Dashpig is owned by Katie Sudds and Brian Hardy of Tavistock, ON. They won a custom designed trophy (of a golden wiener dog), $100 in gift cards from Ren's Pets, and a gift basket valued at $200 compliments of Elements Casino Grand River. The finalists earned their spots in the championship by finishing in the top three of three elimination races. In all, 30 wiener dogs delighted an enthusiastic crowd which packed the Elora, ON track. While Finnegan didn't make the cut for the race final, he did clean up in the Costume Contest. "Maui Wowie" was the theme of his tropical getup, landing owner Robbin Pinkney an inflatable trophy, $100 in gift cards from Ren's Pets, and a gift basket valued at $200 compliments of Elements Casino Grand River. Bella (dressed as an angel) and Lola (dressed as a bride) rounded out the top three, winning gift baskets compliments of Legendary Canine. Live horse racing continues most Monday, Wednesday and Friday nights at Grand River Raceway through September. by Kelly Spencer, for Grand River Raceway  

MILTON, ON - July 6, 2018 - Witch Dali and driver Jody Jamieson capitalized off a third-quarter tilt at the front to win the $30,000 Mares Preferred on Friday evening at Woodbine Mohawk Park. A field of seven pacing mares squared off in the Friday feature with Richard Moreau trainees Witch Dali and Sandbetweenurtoes playing an important role. Sandbetweenurtoes fired out to the lead at the beginning and posted opening fractions of :27.2 and :55.2. Firebby, the 7/5 favourite, started first-up from fourth nearing the half and engaged in a big third-quarter battle with the leader. A third-quarter of :26.3 took a bite out of Sandbetweenurtoes and Firebby, as the mares slugged it out from the half into the lane. Witch Dali was able to benefit from the battle, as she had been situated fifth in the early stages and driver Jamieson followed Firebby's move around the far turn, sitting third on the outside, but a few lengths back of the top pair's battle. Witch Dali powered by the leaders in deep stretch, but was not the only mare passing rivals on the outside. American Sara and Sylvain Filion had tracked Witch Dali from the far turn and got up in the last stride to make it a photo finish. The photo finish camera determined that Witch Dali held on by a head to win at odds of 5/2. Firebby finished third, while Sandbetweenurtoes was fourth. A seven-year-old daughter of Dali, Witch Dali surpassed $100,000 in seasonal earnings with her fifth victory of 2018. The Moreau trainee now has five wins and nine "on the board" finishes in 12 starts this season. Owned by Brad Grant, Witch Dali is now a 28-time winner with career earnings of $582,668. She paid $7.70 to win. Live racing continues Saturday evening at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Post time is 7:30 p.m. by Mark McKelvie, for Woodbine Communications

Horse Racing New Brunswick are very pleased to announce that effective today, they have launched a new website which replaces the old page.   Also included on the new page are race day picks provided by analyst Kurtis Johnston, a link to the updated URL that takes users to stream live racing cards, and up to date contact information.   Horse Racing New Brunswick apologizes for any inconvenience stemming from the technical difficulties on the old site, but they welcome everyone to check the new look at:   Officials from Horse Racing New Brunswick will be adding additional information in the coming days and week's and welcome any feedback on the new page.   by Scott Waddell, for Horse Racing New Brunswick            

CHARLOTTETOWN, PE - A tight knit field of seven pacers will contest the Saturday evening top class at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park. The 10-dash program at the capital oval kicks off at 6 P.M., with the featured pacers lining up in race 9 for a $2,200 purse. Elm Grove Kaboom and trainer-driver Marc Campbell are the morning line choice from post 3 for owners Larry and Kathy Chappell of Marshfield. Perfect Escape comes into the race with a 1:55.3 victory in his latest charted line with Gilles Barrieau back in the bike for trainer Jackie Matheson leaving from post 6. Race analyst Les MacIsaac is going with Elm Grove Kaboom for top spot. "Elm Grove Kaboom might be risky at a short price given the fact that he's only delivered 40 per cent of the time as the chalk this year," MacIsaac said. "Having said that, he seems to be rounding into form and last years record should tell you what he's capable of when he's on his game. Top call." The field also includes Tempo Seelster (Driven by Vincent Poulton), Oh To Be Me (Gary Chappell), Narragansett (Jason Hughes), Stars Above (Steven Shepherd) and Red Magician (Corey MacPherson). The $100,000 Dash For Cash continues on the Saturday program with the promotion set for race 12 on the card. Two lucky patrons that spent $10 or more on one wager earlier on the card will have a chance to select the full order of finish in the eight horse field and win the $100,000 grand prize. Mick Dundee is the favourite in the $1,700 event for owner-trainer-driver Donnie MacNeil of New Haven. Big Surf makes his Island return in the event drawing post 8 for driver Corey MacPherson and trainer Trevor Hicken. The son of Somebeachsomewhere was formerly a top contender in the free-for-all ranks in Atlantic Canada before being sold to U.S. interests. His latest start was at The Meadows in Pennsylvania and was subsequently reacquired by former owner Perry Burke of Quebec. For more information go to Governor's Plate Hopefuls Face Off Sunday SUMMERSIDE, PE - The finest aged pacers on the Eastern Seaboard of Canada will come together Sunday afternoon in Governor's Plate elimination action at Red Shores at the Summerside Raceway. The 12-dash afternoon program has a 1 P.M. start time with a pair of $5,000 eliminations for the 50th edition of the Governor's Plate presented by Township Chevrolet Buck GMC. The first field of seven squares off in race 10 with Euchred favoured from post 4 for the combination of driver Adam Merner, trainer Terry Gallant and owner Kayla Kabicht Walker of Inverness, N.S. The six-year-old son of Shadow Play had his streak of top two finishes snapped last week as he finished fourth in a blistering mile to In Spades. Mr Irresistible rides a two-race win streak into the first elimination after a profitable last week on the mainland. The Jennifer Doyle trainee was a winner in 1:54.2 in the preferred pace at Truro Raceway in Nova Scotia for driver Jason Hughes, then came back three days later to win the $5,000 Walter Dale Invitational at Exhibition Park Raceway in Saint John, N.B. Other entries in the first elimination include Zero Rate (Driven by Kenny Arsenault), Keep Coming (Corey MacPherson), Nogreatmischief (Walter Cheverie), Adkins Hanover (Ambyr Campbell) and Ashes To Ashes (Gilles Barrieau). The second $5,000 Governor's Plate elimination lines up in race 12 with defending champion Do Over Hanover leaving from post 1 with Hughes in the bike for trainer Chris MacKay and owners Red Isle Racing of North Granville, Donald MacRae of Vernon Bridge and Allard Racing Inc., of Saint Esprit, Que. The winner of $260,000 was a nosed out second in his latest outing in 1:55.1. In Spades will be the second elimination favourite fresh off a 1:53.1 win at Red Shores Charlottetown for trainer-driver Austin Sorrie and owner Walter Simmons of Summerside. The Bettor's Delight gelding leaves from post 4. Also in the field is Fast N Victorious (Merner), Czar Seelster (Arsenault), Give Em Heck (Barrieau), Tobinator (MacPherson) and Cartoon Daddy (Dale Spence). Race 11 will feature another Governor's Plate Decade of Champions race honouring the winners from 1991 to 2000. Offshore Cowboy is the favourite in the $1,700 class with Dale Spence in the bike for trainer Donnie Milligan. For more information including details on the ongoing $100,000 Dash For Cash go to by Nicholas Oakes. for Red Shores

CHARLOTTETOWN, PE - Gordie Hennessey delivered another textbook two-hole ride as he steered Outrageous Spirit to victory for her fourth straight win in the Thursday night feature at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park. Best Risque and driver Jason Hughes laid down the early fractions in the $1,900 featured event with splits of 29.1, 59.1 and 1:27.4 while fending off the first-over advance of Prettyndangerous (Driven by Adam Merner). While all the action was unfolding up front, Outrageous Spirit sat in second on the rail then tipped out in the stretch to power past the pacesetters and stop the clock in 1:57.2. Collective Wisdom (Gilles Barrieau) rallied for second with Best Risque holding on for third. Outrageous Spirit is co-owned and trained by Kevin Peters of Emyvale with co-owner Paul Holmes of Warren Grove. The top trot of the evening was claimed by Holy Molie Maggie in 1:59.4 for the team of driver Walter Cheverie, trainer and co-owner Jeff Holmes of Orwell and co-owner Trevor MacDonald of Vernon Bridge. The $1,800 event had a recorded time of 1:59.4 with the triactor being completed by Zip The Lip (Brian MacPhee) and Frill Seeker (Kenny Arsenault). Live racing continues Saturday at 6 P.M. at Red Shores Charlottetown. For race replays and more go to by Nicholas Oakes, for Red Shores

JULY 5, 2018 - Windsong Ophelia may not be a typical three-year-old trotting filly, but trainer Bud Sinclair is hoping the quirky youngster can earn a share of the $144,350 in purse money up for grabs at Clinton Raceway on Sunday afternoon. The filly will start from Post 6 in the first of four $14,000-plus Ontario Sires Stakes Grassroots divisions, and when she trots up behind the gate it will be the last step in a very specific race-day routine. "You've got to do everything the same, every day, or it just mentally doesn't work for her," explains Stratford, Ontario resident Sinclair. "As soon as we get her off the trailer we have to go out and warm her up one trip right away, and that seems to get her to mellow out. If she's got to stand around too long it doesn't work either," he continued. "We're in early so that should help her; we don't have to be there super early, and it's afternoon racing, so I'm hoping that maybe helps her nerves a bit too." Sinclair and his staff spent most of the winter developing the highly specific daily routines that keep Windsong Ophelia in a mindset conducive to racing and to date she has delivered one win, two seconds and two thirds in nine starts, earning owner Jerry VanBoekel of Woodstock, Ontario a total of $11,970. "You've got to get her mentally prepared for everything, and then once you do that, so far things have been working," noted Sinclair. "Hopefully it stays that way." Fergus, Ontario resident Bruce Richardson will steer Cornaro Dasolo daughter Windsong Ophelia from Post 6 in the first race on the Sunday afternoon program, which will be capped off by the $60,900 Kin Pace Final. Coming off an impressive 1:55.3 clocking in her Kin Pace elimination last Sunday, July 1, Write Me A Song is the early favourite to claim the 2018 Kin Pace title. The filly and driver Jody Jamieson of Moffat, Ontario led from start to finish in their elimination and will line up at Post 4 in Sunday's eleventh race. "She should be tough to beat if all goes well in Clinton. That was pretty impressive last week, I just hope she can do it again," said Jack Darling, who owns and trains the long-legged daughter of Sportswriter. "She gets around the turns pretty good, they're pretty tight for her, but she seemed to handle it okay." If Write Me A Song can deliver a victory, the filly will be joined in the winner's circle by a sizeable fan club. Darling grew up in the Exeter area and his family are planning to be on hand for Sunday's final. "I came from right down the road," said Darling, who now makes his home in Cambridge. "I've got some brothers from Exeter, so they'll be out to Clinton on Sunday." Raced just four times at two due to a season-ending injury, Write Me A Song has rapidly made up for lost time in her sophomore campaign. In nine starts she has posted five wins, two seconds and one third for earnings of $80,500. Competing on the Ontario Sires Stakes Gold Series circuit, she has delivered one second and one third in two starts against the province's top fillies. "She's a good-sized filly, but very athletic, likes to do her work," noted Darling. ""She's very fast and she was, she could get a little bit speed crazy, but her last couple starts we've rigged her up a little differently and she's been a lot better." Grassroots regular Askmysecretary won the other Kin Pace elimination on July 1 with a 1:59.1 effort, also going gate-to-wire. The Mach Three daughter and driver Doug McNair of Guelph will start from the trailing Post 8 in Sunday's final for trainer Ted MacDonnell of Allenford and his partners Leonard Gamble of Etobicoke and Tony Lawrence of Hanover, Ontario. Sunday's program gets under way at 1:30 pm with the Grassroots contests slated as Races 1, 3, 5, and 7 and the Kin Pace going to post in Race 11. Complete entries for the program can be found at In addition to Sunday's contest, Clinton Raceway will also host Ontario Sires Stakes Grassroots events on August 5 and September 2. A complete schedule is attached below and can also be found at From the Ontario SIre Stakes           -30-       Photo attached: Exeter native Jack Darling owns and trains Write Me A Song, the early favourite in Sunday's $60,900 Kin Pace Final at Clinton Raceway. (New Image Media photo)           Clinton Raceway   Race Date   Post Time   Age/Sex/Gait   Race Type   Event #   Sunday, July 8   1:30 pm   3-year-old Filly Trot   Grassroots Series   2 (of 5)   Sunday, August 5   1:30 pm   3-year-old Colt Pace   Grassroots Series   4 (of 5)   Sunday, September 2   1:30 pm   2-year-old Filly Pace   Grassroots Series   4 (of 5)               OSS Program Information   For rules, notices, Program changes, up-to-date point standings, race replays, and more, visit:   For background information and/or contact details for local Ontario Sires Stakes participants, feature stories, and photographs to complement your local coverage contact Sandra Snyder at 519-572-0167 or       OSS Program Administration   Ontario Racing   10 Carlson Court, Suite 400, Toronto, ON M9W 6L2   416-213-1800       Follow the OSS on Social Media!   @ONTSSNews   You may unsubscribe at any time by clicking here.   Upon request, this document will be provided in an accessible format.   Vous pouvez vous désabonner à tout moment en cliquant ici.   Sur demande, ce document sera fournie dans un format accessible.              

ELORA, ON - Mustard won't share the racetrack with any racehorses on Friday night at Grand River Raceway, but he will share the spotlight. The 2017 champion of last year's Ren's Pets Wiener Dog Races will defend his title against 29 Dachshunds during the fourth edition of the fan-favourite event on July 6. In all, the night offers 10 horse races and four wiener dog races. Post time for the first horse race is 6:30 p.m. Mustard will start from post six in the second of three heats to be contested after horse race #5 (approximately 8:00 p.m.). Tank, the 2016 champion, finished second to Mustard in last year's final. Tank is owned by harness racing driver James MacDonald and his wife Jenna, and will race against Mustard in the same heat from post position #9. The top three finishers from each 10-dog dash will advance to the championship after horse race #7 (approximately 8:45 p.m.) All races are 20 meters in length. The event is supported by title sponsor Ren's Pets, Elements Casino Grand River, Big Country Raw and Legendary Canine. Prizes for the top dogs total more than $500. The dog action kicks off with an all-breeds Costume Contest after horse race #3 (approximately 7:15 p.m.). The event attracts one of the largest crowds of the racing season at Grand River Raceway. Organizers have ramped up dining options, adding three food trucks and a licensed BBQ patio to its existing three restaurants and Tarmac BBQ area. A new 10' x 18' video screen in the infield will also enhance the racing experience for guests. Regular Friday race night activities include The NEIGHbourhood which runs free for kids under the Tarmac Tent from 6:30 - 8:30 and includes horse-related crafts, a photo with the winning horse of a race, and a barn tour. 107.5 DAVE ROCKS will broadcast live from 7:00 - 10:00 p.m. Parking and admission are always free for the races at Grand River Raceway. Wiener Dog lovers who can't make it to the track can catch the live streaming video of the broadcast beginning at 6:00 p.m. See the Grand River Raceway website for complete event details, including photos and bios of each dog competing in the races. by Kelly Spencer, for Grand River Raceway    

CHARLOTTETOWN, PE - She will be looking to make up for an uncharacteristic break in stride last week as Prettyndangerous is billeted as top choice in the Thursday evening featured pace at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park. The 12-dash program kicks off at 6:30 P.M. with the Adam Merner driven Prettyndangerous installed as the morning line choice in the race 11 top conditioned pace for a $1,900 purse. The Bo Ford trainee drops out of the Fillies and Mares Open Pace ranks for this week's contest and has driven post 5 for owners Ford and Arnold Myers of Charlottetown. She will run into one of the hottest horses on the Island this week though as Outrageous Spirit has drawn post 2. Gordie Hennessey drives the mare for trainer Kevin Peters after capitalizing on two-hole rides and hitting the winner's circle in her last three races. The class also sees the front-running Best Risque leaving off the rail for driver Jason Hughes. Race analyst Les MacIsaac thinks it is redemption time for Prettyndangerous. "Prettyndangerous has yet to hit her best stride but we all know it's there," MacIsaac said. "She needs something to jump start her season and dropping out of the open mares could be just what the doctor ordered. If she brings her best she'll be hard to deny." Other entries include Collective Wisdom (Driven by Gilles Barrieau), Keepcalmndanceon (Marc Campbell) and Diduseethat (Corey MacPherson). The top trot of the program hit the track in race 6 for a $1,800 pot. Holy Molie Maggie and Isabella Hanover duke it out in the seven-horse field. Walter Cheverie drives Holy Molie Maggie from post 3 for trainer Jeff Holmes, while Isabella Hanover has post 7 with Merner in the bike for trainer Stephen Gass. For more information go to by Nicholas Oakes, for Red Shores

Trois-Rivieres, QC - The most impressive victory on the Tuesday evening card at the Hippodrome 3R took place in the second race pace where the three favorites, Mrs Dragonfire, Big Mac and Kinnder Jackson, all were coming off victories and meeting for the first time. A real battle took place as Mrs Dragonfire (Guy Gagnon) was on the front end with Encore Panic (Pierre Luc Roy) in the pocket seat to the opening quarter in :27.2. Then by the half mile mark in :57.2, Stephane Brosseau came first-over with race favorite Big Mach and following their outside over was undefeated Kinnder Jackson with Justin Filion driving. As they started up the backstretch, Filion moved three-wide with Kinnder Jackson and the three-year-old gelding by Allamerican Native blew by the two leaders and was in the lead by the three-quarters in 1:26.1. From there Kinnder Jackson pulled away from the field to win by six and one-quarter lengths in 1:56. Mrs Dragonfire was second with Encore Panic third. It was a lifetime mark for Kinnder Jackson and his fourth straight win, unbeaten this year and all his races at H3R. He was bred and is owned and trained by Denitza Petrova of Melbourne and paid $9.90 to win. He is now tied with Requested as the winningest horses at H3R this season. Petrova and Filion nearly made it a double on the night as Kinnder Prediction fought head and head with Lindas Jewell (Mario Lachance) for most of the one mile trot and actually won the race. But because Kinnder Prediction went inside some of the plyons, the horse was placed last in the fifth race. Track Notes: The Quebec-Bred Series for four and five-year-old pacers gets back underway at the Hippodrome 3R this Sunday with the third leg in the series. After Sunday, the top eight point earners return on a special Thursday night card, August 9 for the $30,000 finals. From the Quebec Jockey Club    

Trois-Rivieres, QC - The future stars of harness racing, the two and three-year-old "babies"as they are called, are getting started at the Hippodrome 3R Tuesday evening with both pacers and trotters in action. In the fourth race pace, a three-year-old returns who was ultra-impressive in her pari-mutuel debut and she goes by the name of All You Can Dream. Owned by Harold and Ariane Duguay of Pabos, All You Can Dream blew away the field last week in her pari-mutuel, winning by 24 lengths in 1:56 for driver Sylvain Filion. The track record for three-year-old fillies is less than a second from her mark, 1:55.1. Harold Duguay was not surprised by how good his Sportswriter filly did. "I was expecting a very good performance, Duguay said. "She had qualified very well and I saw that she could at least break 2.00. I bought her last fall and I trained her all winter. It made me dream a lot because I saw that I had something special in my hands. I have already received some attractive offers but for now I prefer to keep her. She has something special in her." As for the driver, Stéphane Brosseau, who had the privilege of qualifying her the surprise was not great: "I came back better than a minute that morning with a certain ease," Brosseau explained. "I was expecting her to roll around 2.00 and maybe better." On Tuesday, All You Can Dream, will take off from post 2 in the 4th race pace and will race against four-year-old fillies and mares. Its main rival, Butterfly BG, had just won a great victory in two minutes but was disqualified for skipping cones. Sunshine Lou is the first two-year-old on card and this colt by Sunshine Beach starts from post one in the first race on the program and faces a field of six older rivals. He will be driven by Stephane Brosseau and enters its first pari-mutuel race off an impressive wire-to-wire victory in 2:03.2. Sunshine Lou could very well beat his older rivals for trainer Daniel Martin and breeder and co-owner Hudson Standardbred Stable, Dominique Michel and Daniel Martin of QC. Then in the fifth race there are two two-year-old trotters on the program and they are Goodbyeinhereyes and HP Bruxelles. HP Bruxelles starts from post two and is the fastest of the two fillies. She is sired by E L Titain and was bred and is owned by Claude Hamel of Ayer S' Cliff. Trained by Jean Tourigny and will be driven by Stephane Brosseau. She was second in her qualifying race and showed a very impressive :29.2 last quarter mile. Goodbyeinhereyes goes from the rail for driver Denis Filion. This filly by RC Royalty is trained by Gabriel Beaumont and owned by Marie Breault of Laval. She was third to HP Bruzelle and trotted her last quarter mile in :30.4. First race post time Tuesday is 6:30 pm. For a free race program, visit From the Quebec Jockey Club  

Royaltywestho pulled ahead on the Atlantic Sires Stakes leader board as she captured another win on Sunday afternoon at Inverness Raceway. The three-year-old bay pacing filly was under the command of Walter Cheverie as they crossed the finish line in 1:57.2 for owners Joseph Baxter and Gregory Francis of Windsor, NS. The other $10,520 'A' division event went to R Es Shabla and driver Mike McGuigan in a time of 1:56.3. The three-year-old filly is owned by Lloyd Parsons of Carmanville, NL. Elm Grove Maddy and driver Redmond Doucet won the lone $2500 'B' division event for owner Steve Morton of Windsor, NS. Atlantic Sires Stakes racing action will heat up again soon as all six divisions will meet for competition during Governor's Plate Week at Red Shores Summerside Raceway. by Lynne MacLennan, for the Atlantic Standardbred Breeders Association

JULY 1, 2018 - A steamy afternoon at Dresden Raceway's annual Canada Day celebration resulted in a track record equaling performance from three-year-old trotter Sicario in the first of two $18,800 Grassroots divisions. Starting from Post 1, Sicario and driver Stephen Byron never saw another horse as they rocketed along on the front end. Posting fractions of :29.1, :59.1 and 1:30, the fan favourites cruised home eight length winners in 1:59.3, equaling the record set by Starsel in a 2006 Grassroots event. Daylon Phantom overcame an early mistake to finish second and Road Tripper was third. "I didn't know (about the record) until they announced that after, but he did it very easy," said Byron. "He is good on a half, that's for sure, he trots a turn very well. Where some of them might have to be a little more careful, he can zip around them." Byron piloted Sicario to his second-straight Grassroots victory for trainer John Bax, whose Bax Stable of Campbellville shares ownership of the gelding with breeder Dave Hudson of Dallas, Texas. The son of Holiday Road and $1.04 million winner Gypsy Balance now has a record of six wins and two seconds in 15 sophomore starts for earnings of $53,400. The thermometer read 33 degrees Celsius when Sicario and his peers went to post in the fourth race and Byron said keeping the horses cool was a full-time job. "It was pretty hot on them. Matt (Bax) was just throwing cold water on them to keep them cool," said the reinsman. "Now we'll get them home where they can relax." Byron also drove Bax trainee Delcrest Holiday in the second Grassroots division, finishing a hard-closing third after a little bobble heading toward the quarter-mile marker. "(We were) going to be three-wide in the first turn so I waited, and then when I was in a spot where I had to drive on a bit he kind of ran in on me, so I had to check him, and then he just got a little bent on me," explained the Thornton, Ontario resident. "After that he was fine. He still raced well, we were happy with him." Delcrest Holiday finished behind Leaderofthepack and Edstone in the second Grassroots division, which saw Ryan Holliday emulate Byron's front-end tactics with Leaderofthepack. Powering away from Post 5, Holliday and Leaderofthepack rang up fractions of :29.1, :59.1 and 1:30.2 on their way to a five length victory in 2:00.2. "He's handy off the wings so he'd benefit on a racetrack like this where a few others wouldn't," said Holliday of the fan favourite. "He's pretty sure footed, knock on wood." A two-time Grassroots winner last season, Sunday's victory was Leaderofthepack's first on the sophomore Ontario Sires Stakes circuit. David and Ben Holliday of Mount Forest, Ontario own and train the Angus Hall son, who boosted his three-year-old record to two wins, three seconds and one third in seven starts for earnings of $22,070. The Holliday's helped Leaderofthepack cope with the heat by adding a fan to the list of equipment that usually accompanies the gelding to each race. "We brought a fan down and hooked it up and had that blowing on him all day," said Holliday, who also makes his home in Mount Forest. "I said to my brother Ben, who is with me here, that he actually didn't feel that good today in the race, he just felt a little dull, but he said he was like that warming up. He can sometimes be a bit of a handful, but today I think he was feeling the heat, just like the other seven or eight were. He'll get a couple days rest now to get over it." With two victories Sicario sits atop the three-year-old trotting colt and gelding standings with a total of 100 Grassroots points. With one win and one third-place result Leaderofthepack and Delcrest Holiday are tied for second with 62 points. All three colts will be looking to pad their totals when they meet up in the third Grassroots leg at Woodbine Mohawk Park on July 19. From the Ontario Sire Stakes

SUMMERSIDE, PE - Defeating the reigning Governor’s Plate harness racing champion is no small feat but Cartoon Daddy prevailed in a hard fought stretch duel on Canada Day Sunday at RedShores at the Summerside Raceway. Dale Spence supplied the winning steer as part of a driving triple on the 13-dash card crossing the wire in 1:55.1 with Cartoon Daddy. Race favourite Fast N Victorious (Driven by Adam Merner) set the early tempo of 27.1 and 56 then Do Over Hanover, winner of the 2017 Governor’s Plate, took over before the three-quarters of 1:25.4 for driver Jason Hughes. Do Over Hanover attemped to fight off Cartton Daddy but fell short by a neck to finish second. Mando Fun (Kenny Arsenault) completed the triactor. Cartoon Daddy is trained by Rachel Andrew for owners Brian Andrew of Milton and William Andrew of Calgary, Alta. Spence also won with Cyrax in 1:58.1 for trainer Barry Biggar of Summerside and Bet Er All for Ralph Sweet of O’Leary. Old Buck delivered as favourite in the $1,900 Canada Day pace with a 1:58.1 victory for owner-trainer Alan MacDonald of Summerside and driver Hughes. The Canada Day program was one 18-year-old driver Drew Neill will never forget as he scored with first lifetime driving win with Celebrate Your Bet. The Winsloe driver and the Nicholas Oakes trainee stopped the clock in 1:59.3 for owner Douglas Matheson of Cornwall. Live racing continues Thursday and Saturday at Red Shores Charlottetown while the action heats up next Sunday (July 8) with the eliminations of the 50th edition of the Governor’s Plate. Go to for more information. by Nicholas Oakes, for Red Shores

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