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Herestopatrick Scores Upset In The Count B Opener

Published: January 30, 2009 10:04 pm ET

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Herestopatrick converted a perfect two-hole trip into an upset win in Friday night’s opening leg of The Count B Pacing Series for three-year-old colts and geldings at Woodbine Racetrack.

Just a single $20,000 division was required with a total of 10 colts entering the first leg.

In Friday’s contest, driver Randy Waples had Herestopatrick leaving alertly from Post 5 and yielded in the opening eighth to the hard-leaving Red Riverboat (Phil Hudon) before quickly retaking command before the first quarter in just :29 seconds.

As the field straightened up towards the half, the heavily-favoured Artists Rally (Mark MacDonald) made a quick move to take command just before the second panel in :58.3. At that point, Scottie C (Mario Baillargeon) was grinding up on the outside and made it up to third as the field reached the three-quarters in 1:26.1.

Artists Rally was easily able to rebuff that challenge and widened his margin, allowing a seam for Herestopatrick to come to the outside.

In the stretch, the top pair drew clear in the field and matched strides right up until the late stages when Herestopatrick surged by for the 1:54.3 victory. It was far back to Midnite Romp (Paul MacDonell) who got up for the show spot.

Herestopatrick, trained by Mark Austin, returned $16.70 in notching his second win of the season in four outings for owner Michael Cecile of Windsor, Ontario.

The Count B Series will continue with second-round action next Friday night at Woodbine.

In Open action, Four Starzz Meliss kept her 2008 record untarnished when she romped to victory in the $44,000 Fillies & Mares event.

With Luc Ouellette in tow, the eight-year-old daughter of Cambest – Tappy Belle took immediate control of the field and carved out panels of :27, :56.1, and 1:24.4. As she entered the stretch, the 4-5 favourite found another gear, sprinting home for the triumph in 1:53 by three and three-quarter lengths.

Longshot Marietta Hall (Mark MacDonald) rode the pocket to finish second while Arts A Flutter (Randy Waples) came on for third.

Four Starzz Meliss hangs her harness in the Glenn Lalonde barn. Owned by Jennifer Lalonde of Guelph and John Nother of Brampton, Ont., the winner of 35 races and $645,446 in earnings scored her second victory of the year.

To view Friday’s results, click here.

(With files from WEG)

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