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Up For A 'Legend'-ary Challenge

Published: April 23, 2014 8:54 am ET

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With Canada’s fastest performer of 2014 on his hands, owner and trainer Dave Drew could be in for another exciting year campaigning a horse that flew under the radar as a serious stakes contender against one of the deepest aged pacing divisions on record.

His once-in-a-lifetime racehorse, six-year-old pacer Modern Legend, became Canada’s first sub-1:50 winner this year with a 1:49.3 career-best effort in his last race at Woodbine Racetrack on April 12.

“He’s been racing well and I was very pleased with his 1:49.3 mile 10 days ago,” Drew told Trot Insider on Tuesday evening. “He seems to be doing well and he’s in the entry box for Saturday [at Woodbine] so we’ll see what transpires. Beyond that, he is staked in the TVG Series at The Meadowlands, which starts May 10, so that would be the next targeted race after this week.”

Last year, Modern Legend earned nearly half of his $488,805 career bankroll while hitting the board in 14 of his 22 starts competing among the top pacing ranks for the active St. Catharines, Ont. horseman and retired General Motors Plant Manager. While Drew's homebred Modern Art-Ruby Cam gelding didn’t win any titles, he proved to be a major player in his first Open stakes campaign, coming close in many eye-catching miles.

Modern Legend finished just a neck back in third behind the Ron Burke entry of Fred And Ginger and Sweet Lou in a 1:47.3 mile during a leg of the TVG at The Meadowlands in early June. Two starts later in the Ben Franklin eliminations at Pocono Downs he nearly caught harness racing’s richest pacer, Foiled Again, in a world record 1:48 mile. In his later return to Pocono for the Breeders Crown, he finished half a length behind Foiled Again and Pet Rock in 1:49.2 over a sloppy track.

Drew’s stable star will look to tackle the sport’s toughest pacers once again this stakes season with the hopes of another competitive campaign.

“He’s paid into several of the major stakes at this point in time,” said Drew. “We’ll keep him eligible to those and see how he starts out in the TVG.

“Obviously, the Open pacing series are always very competitive and there will be strong horses in this year,” noted Drew. “It will certainly be a challenge, but I hope for the best with him. It should be very good racing as far as fans are concerned and wagering and so on -- they should be outstanding races as they were last year.”

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