Zeron Scores Third Straight Gold Win

Published: October 14, 2011 09:35 pm EDT

Fresh off a pair of Ontario Sires Stakes Gold Series wins on Thursday night at Woodbine Racetrack, driver Scott Zeron returned to the Rexdale oval to claim one of the two $130,000 pots of gold on Friday night while finishing second in the other


In the evening’s Gold Final for two-year-old pacing fillies, the reigning Lampman Cup champion floated Apogee Hanover off the gate from Post 7 and the fired up daughter of Jeremes Jet-Aurora Seelster quickly opened up a five length lead on the field. The elimination winner carved out fractions of :27.3, :55.3 and 1:23.1 before cutting through a strong headwind in the stretch to score the 1:54.3 triumph by two and three-quarter lengths. Legal Entity (Luc Ouellette) rallied home from third over to place while Mindsweeper (Jody Jamieson) advanced first over to show.

Apogee Hanover paid $3.60 to win as the odds-on favourite in the field off nine. The bay filly is now four-for-10 in her career with a prior Gold Final win on July 18 at Mohawk Racetrack. The lion’s share of the purse boosted her bankroll to $197,200 for trainer Erv Miller and owner Roger Hammer of Bedford, Pennsylvania.

“I’ve never really gotten the orders to send her to the front and the past two starts he [Erv Miller] told me to just try and get her up on the bit and make sure she’s leaving off the gate and you have her attention because she’s made breaks with me babying her,” explained Zeron after the victory. “So we left and made the front. Turns out I got her too fired up leaving so she didn’t really relax for me, but when you’re two seconds the best they can go fast to the half and still win.”

Zeron noted that when he turned for home the wind really slowed up his filly, who clocked a :31.2 final frame, but she finished with a little bit left in the tank and he was confident that the other fillies wouldn’t catch her.

“For us as drivers, when it’s this windy you can’t really hear too much behind you and I don’t like to look over my shoulder and show the other guys that maybe my horse might be getting weak," added the Oakville, Ont resident. "So I never looked over and I drove my horse right through to the wire.”

Zeron had to settle for the runner-up spot with Heres The Magic in the next $130,000 Gold Final two-year-old trotting colts as The Game Plan and driver Jack Moiseyev stole the show with an eight and a half length romp.

Divisional leader and elimination winner The Game Plan and Moiseyev got away fourth from Post 6 while Il Mago (Trevor Ritchie) crossed down to the pylons and posted a :28.2 opening quarter. As the field headed down the backstretch, Moiseyev sent the son of Kadabra-Image Control first up and cleared the lead at the :58.4 half-mile mark. He proceeded past three-quarters in 1:28.2 and turned for home while extending his lead on the field. The Game Plan continued to pour it on down the lane en route to the 1:57.3 triumph (final quarter in :29.1). Heres The Magic was flushed first over from fourth after The Game Plan struck the front and came on for second while Victim Of Changes (Jody Jamieson) followed for third.

"You never know what to expect in the wind with two-year-old trotters," said Moiseyev after the win. "I got away fourth there and then I moved him after a slow first quarter and he swelled right up and made the front."

As the season progresses, Moiseyev said he has noticed a change in the gelding.

"He's getting smarter. Kadabras are pretty smart anyway," noted the resident of Moffat, Ont.

The Game Plan paid $3.30 to win as the heavy favourite. The bay gelding is now eight-for-11 in his career and has never missed the board. Among his wins include a victory in the August 26 Gold Final at Mohawk and the William Wellwood Memorial prior to this Gold Series event. The career winner of $485,300 is owned by trainer John Kopas of Milton, Ont., Gary Grieve of Union, Ont., and the LLK Stable and Anthony Wagner of Mississauga, Ont.

To view results for Friday’s card of harness racing, click the following link: Friday Results – Woodbine Racetrack.

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