Richard Moreau trainee Huntress pounced from the pocket to defeat the favoured So Much More in the $36,000 Fillies & Mares Preferred Handicap Pace featured on an action-packed Friday night (Nov. 17) at Woodbine Mohawk Park.
Driven by Sylvain Filion, Huntress fired to the lead from the outside post five with last week's winner So Much More parked and advancing to take over command at the quarter pole in :27.2 for driver James MacDonald. After So Much More got a second quarter breather with no movement from her foes as she led to the half in :56.3, Huntress launched her attack on the final turn. Huntress battled head-to-head with the 3-5 favourite past three-quarters in 1:24.4, gaining the advantage in the stretch and pulling clear at the end of the 1:51.1 mile with a game So Much More settling for second and Goudawon driving late for third.
Closing out the mile with a :26.2 final frame, Huntress was just one-fifth of a second off her lifetime mark taken two starts ago in the Mares Preferred 2.
Huntress was the 6-5 second choice coming off a fourth-place finish in last week's Preferred behind O'Brien Award winners So Much More, Prohibition Legal and Silver Label -- the latter two scratched sick tonight. She returned $4.40 to win and $2.10 to place. There was no show wagering.
The four-year-old Huntsville-Love And Honor mare is now four-for-five in Canada since arriving in the Moreau stable this fall. Huntress earned her ninth win of the season from 22 starts and her 30th career victory for Florida-based owners Let It Ride Stables Inc. and W. J. Donovan.
The hot-handed James MacDonald will look to complete a sweep of the Harvest Series for Ontario-sired three-year-old pacing fillies when the $40,000 (added) final goes to post next week after winning every preliminary division. On Friday night, he drove Godiva Shadow Girl ($2.80) and Honey Love ($3.50) to repeat victories in the series.
Raymond Larose's homebred Shadow Play filly Godiva Shadow Girl kicked off the second leg with a front-stepping score in a career-best 1:53.1 by 1-1/2 lengths over True That and Premier Delight. The win was her third in a row since joining the Moreau stable.
Trained by Mike Bishop for owner Millar Farms, Honey Love was a 1:55.2 winner in her $17,000 division as the homebred daughter of Big Jim retook the lead after the opening quarter and bested Starlight Dancer and Brynley Seelster by 1-3/4 lengths.
The series is for non-winners of $30,000 in 2023 as of Sept. 30.
In addition to their Harvest Series score, MacDonald and Moreau teamed up for another victory with claiming mare The Ideal Huntress ($5.60).
MacDonald also won with Hey Ralphie ($11.50) for trainer Michel Rivest, Ezra ($3.50) for Jesse Yoder and he combined with Crone to win the finale in rein to Duchenne ($5.20).
Crone's other wins were courtesy of Mohawk newcomer Alabama Hannah ($15.60), driven by Anthony Haughan, and fellow three-year-old pacing filly Powder Play ($5.10), with Jody Jamieson in the bike.
To view Friday's harness racing results, click the following link: Friday Results - Woodbine Mohawk Park.