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JJ Shark Repeats In Valedictory; Oceanview Bindi Doubles Up In Niagara

Published: December 17, 2012 10:22 pm ET

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The second leg of the Valedictory Series went postward Monday evening at Woodbine Racetrack, and for the second week-in-a-row JJ Shark was a force to be reckoned with.

Handled by reinsman Randy Waples, JJ Shark got away fifth while Autumn Gottem roared to the lead a supplied the field with first half panels of :26.4 and :55.1 before being pressed by a first-over JJ Shark to the three-quarter station in 1:24.3. JJ Shark used a :27.2 closing quarter to seal the deal by three lengths in 1:52.1. Boxcar was second best, with Donau taking home the show dough.

“I couldn’t be happier with him,” said Waples. “He is a really nice horse. He had to race a big mile tonight and showed that he can do that. Last week he got a real nice, sweet, easy trip and this week he had to rough it. He was just as good this week, if not better. I’m glad about that, but it all comes down to the post position (for the final).”

Sent off as the 3-2 favourite in the eight-horse affair, JJ Shark visited victory lane for the eighth time this season. The Peter Hamilton pupil is owned by partners Joseph Hemmingway, Valorie Sutton and Sandbur Farms. The lion’s share of the $30,000 purse boosted his lifetime earnings to $68,406.

Doowrah Omelet erupted for a 14-1 upset in his $30,000 division for the tandem of driver Keith Oliver and trainer Richard Moreau. The gelding got away sixth while Gareth Nourrir muscled to the lead and hammered out the opening quarter in a :26-second clip. BJs Guy popped out of the pocket in the second quarter and brushed to the top before hitting the half in :55.2.

Curious Phoenix launched a first-over bid in the backstretch and cleared to the engine before racing by the third post in 1:24. Doowrah Omelet, who caught cover in the backstretch, kicked off his second-over cover turning for home and used a :27.3 kicker to post the win by 3-1/4 lengths in 1:52.1 at odds of 14-1. Curious Phoenix was next best, with third prize going to Gareth Nourrir.

“He raced great tonight,” said Oliver. “I talked to Sylvain (Filion) before the race and he told me what the horse was like. Richard (Moreau) had another entry in there. I got lucky and pick up that horse.

“The race just set up well for him,” he added. “The cover went and the flow was good.”

Edwin Harwood of Monroe, MI bred and owns the three-year-old gelded son of Threefold-Embryo who improved this year’s record to 6-4-2 from 17 starts with the victory. The sophomore has banked in excess of $41,000 to date.

Oceanview Bindi, who is known for her lethal kick at the end of the mile, used that weapon to perfection en route to notching a nose decision in Monday’s lone second-leg division of the Niagara Series. On the heels of last week’s 1:53.4 triumph in the series, Keith Oliver got away sixth with the 7-5 favourite in Monday’s assignment. Trama Unit shot to the top, in the meantime, and led the field to the quarter pole in :26.3 before giving way to Aubsession at the mid-way point in a :56-second clip.

Aubsession opened up a big lead around the final turn and was 3-1/4 lengths on top at the three-quarter marker in 1:24.3. Oceanview Bindi, who was third over and still sitting sixth at the three-quarter pole, uncorked a :27.1 closing panel which was good enough to earn her the nose decision over Apach Of Luck in 1:53.1. Aubsession was a lapped-on third.

“Around the last turn I was (concerned about the flow),” said Oliver. “The front horse (Aubsession) was getting away from us pretty good, but my filly stepped up.

“Last week was the first time I had ever driven her and she was incredible,” he added. “I moved her three-deep in the turn (last week), which you can’t do with many horses here (at Woodbine). She paced straight through it, strong to the wire, and she did the same tonight.”

Trainer George Plyley of Hamilton, ON shares ownership on the three-year-old daughter of Hunterstown-Hygeia Hanover with William Roloson of Belfast, PE. The sophomore, who was unraced as a rookie, now owns a 10-4-3 record from 20 starts. The photogenic performer added $15,000 to her lifetime cash stash which now stands at $69,565.

(With quotes from WEG)

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

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