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Willowdale Series Prelims Completed


Published: January 16, 2010 10:53 pm ET

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Ideal Race was a repeat winner while Handsome Harry captured the other division in Saturday’s second leg of the Willowdale Pacing Series for four-year-olds during an unseasonably warm night at Woodbine Racetrack.

The first $35,000 division was an action-packed affair from start to finish with Shady Cam parking well past the opening quarter of :25.4 before clearing the field and leading through pressured splits of :54.1 and 1:22.4.

Race favourite Schoolkids was forced to come first over with Gotcha Covered following on his back and Handsome Harry third-over but with plenty of speed to chase. As the field turned for home, the front end understandably began to tire and Gotcha Covered looped up three wide to wrestle the lead with the closers in hot pursuit.

Once clear, Handsome Harry kicked in with a strong stretch rally for driver Rick Zeron to easily overhaul the pacesetters while stopping the clock in 1:51.1. Pangiorno overcame traffic trouble in the stretch to land the place spot with Gotcha Covered settling for third.

It was the first win in three tries this season for the son of Dream Away - Princess Jocelyn who won 15 of 21 starts last season at three. Joey Shea recently took over the training of the pacer, who surpassed the $337,000 mark in earnings, for owners Ralph Del Priore of New York and Harry Doyle of New Jersey.

In the second split, Ideal Race was able to assume command easily from post seven and, once on top, he cruised to a gate-to-wire victory for driver Luc Ouellette in 1:51. The gelded son of Western Terror - Eidette Hanover finished more than two lengths ahead of Panmunjom with race favourite, Keep It Real, who won on the front in round one of the series, closing from off the pace to finish third.

Ideal Race notched his second consecutive win in the series and will have a chance to sweep next week in the $75,000 for trainer Tracy Brainard and the Bulletproof Enterprises of Boca Raton, Florida. Saturday’s victory improved his career earnings to just over $287,000.

The top ten money winners from the preliminary legs will have the chance to line up on the starting next Saturday evening at Woodbine for the $77,100 final of the Willowdale Pacing Series.


To view Saturday’s results, click here.

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