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Fillies Featured In Alberta Stakes

Published: October 13, 2013 2:47 am ET

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Two-year-old pacing fillies Shark Festival and Sweet Sugar shared the spotlight in the $20,000 ASHA Filly Stakes on Saturday afternoon at Alberta Downs.

Shark Festival earned the second stakes victory of her career for trainer/driver Keith Clark, who also owns and bred the Shadow Play-Shark Fest filly with Harvey and Ann Jaeger of Okotoks, Alta.

Shark Festival advanced from fifth to first approaching the half-mile mark in the first $10,000 division and held off favourite Nighttraintovegas (Brandon Campbell) in the stretch to prevail by one length in 1:57.1. The winner's stablemate, Make Three Wishes (Bobby Clark), came on for third.

Shark Festival, who also won a division of the Emerald Filly Stakes at the end of July, is now four-for-seven in her career with earnings climbing to $22,875.

Driven by Travis Cullen, Sweet Sugar pushed her win streak to four with a career-best 1:56.3 victory in the second $10,000 split.

Sweet Sugar rallied home off cover to edge out pacesetter Rummys Command (Keith Clark) by a head. Justapassin Fanci (Gerry Hudon) bested favourite Triple Action (Philip Giesbrecht) for third one and three-quarter lengths behind.

Tim Brown trains the Tajma Hall-Hide The Candy filly for owners Sandra Brown of Langley, B.C. and Archie Melnyk of Sherwood Park, Alta. She is four-for-seven in her career with a pair of Alberta Sires Stakes victories also on her resume. The lion's share of the purse bumped her bankroll to $26,593.

Three-year-old pacing fillies also competed in a pair of $10,000 eliminations for their final Alberta Sires Stakes event of the season.

Division standout Crackers Hot Shot won the fastest Alberta Marquis elimination in 1:54.4 for driver Bill Tainsh Jr. and Lamont, Alta. trainer and owner Rod Starkewski. The Camcracker-Shesahotshot filly, who is undefeated in ABSS action this year, swept around eventual runner-up Emotions Run Wild (Kelly Hoerdt) after the first quarter and drew off to win by five and a half lengths. Cane Sugar (Jamie Gray) finished seven and three-quarter lengths behind in third.

The other elimination was won by G Ts Selene and driver Travis Cullen. The homebred As Promised-Enola Gay Mindale filly, who is owned by trainer Gerald, Marjorie, and Terry McGinn of Stony Plain, Alta., romped to a four and three-quarter length victory over a closing Cenalta Fireworks (Rene Goulet) with Barona Lilac (Kelly Hoerdt) following seven lengths behind.

The $50,000 (added) Alberta Marquis Final will be held on Saturday, Oct. 26, at Northlands Park.

Former Alberta Marquis winner Blue Star Beauty left from her assigned outside post five starting spot in the $7,500 Fillies & Mares Open Pace and went wire-to-wire to win in 1:55 flat. The four-year-old As Promise mare, who was sent postward as the overwhelming favourite after winning last week's Open, was driven by Tainsh Jr. for trainer Douglas Stout and owner Derek Stout of Camrose, Alta.

To view Saturday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Saturday Results - Alberta Downs.


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