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Campbell & Marino Advance To NDC

Published: April 26, 2014 3:30 pm ET

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Brandon Campbell took the lead early in the Western Regional Driving Championship and never relinquished it from that point forward while racking up three wins during the nine-race challenge on Fraser Downs' meet-closing card Saturday afternoon.

Campbell and runner-up Jim Marino will advance to the 2014 National Driving Championship, which takes place on August 26 at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at Charlottetown Driving Park.

Campbell, a P.E.I. native now based in Alberta, is looking forward to his homecoming and competing at the national level.

"My mom and two sisters and the rest of my family will get to meet my new daughter," said Campbell. "I'm really, really pumped about it.

"My whole family is from P.E.I. The last Drivers Challenge, I got lucky enough to be able to go out there and it was a really great experience. My whole family is from there and they built quite a name for themselves and everybody welcomed me with open arms. It would be an absolute privilege to be able to go back again."

The lead changed hands between opening leg winners Bill Davis and Scott Knight before Campbell took over the top spot in round three with a victory aboard Steve O, who followed Hector Protector wide and defeated him in a battle to the wire. Campbell maintained his lead in the standings through the rest of the competition while earning back-to-back wins in the sixth and seventh legs with runaway winner Steal The Diamonds and Slow And Easy, who rallied wide off cover and swept by the field down the stretch.

Campbell earned a total of 90 points while Marino (63 points) clinched the runner-up honours with a victory in the last leg aboard the pocket-pulling Pureform Olympia, edging out Gerry Hudon (62 points) in the final standings by one point. Hudon, Richard Remillard and John Chappell also earned victories in the other legs of the competition.

The winner of the NDC will represent Canada in the World Driving Championship in Australia in February/March 2015.

Here is a look at the official leaderboard:

Rank - Driver - Region - Points
1. Brandon Campbell - Alberta - 90
2. Jim Marino - B.C. - 63
3. Gerry Hudon - Alberta - 62
4. Bill Davis - B.C. - 56
5. Richard Remillard - Saskatchewan - 55
6. Travis Cullen - Alberta - 51
7. John Chappell - B.C. - 46
8. Scott Knight - B.C. - 44
9. Don Howlett - Manitoba - 25

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

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