Update On Sunshine Beach

Published: April 29, 2014 08:26 am EDT

Montreal owner Conrad Leber has a treasured photo of his pacer Safe Arrival leading the 1980 Prix d’Ete at Blue Bonnets. Unfortunately, it was taken in the first turn.

Niatross blew by seconds later and kept widening. He was six lengths clear of his nearest pursuer at the end, and it wasn’t Safe Arrival. He didn’t hit the board.

To date, he’s been Leber’s only Prix d’Ete starter. But that could change Sept. 21, when the race is revived at Hippodrome 3R in Trois-Rivieres.

Sunshine Beach, which Leber co-owns with Hudson Standardbreds of Hudson, Que., and Diane Bertrand of Edmonton, is one of two dozen four-year-olds nominated for the race.

“Maybe he’ll be able to do it,” said Leber, who’ll be 89 next month. “He’s never raced on a half-mile track and you never know how they’ll handle it, but he’s coming back terrific.”

A near-millionaire in 2013 for trainer Mark Steacy, Sunshine Beach had an off-season operation to remove a bladder stone but appears fully recovered and is due to begin serious training in about a week. If all goes well, he’ll make his stakes debut as an older horse in the Ben Franklin Pace at Pocono Downs in June.
Last year, his eight wins included the Progress Pace and the Battle of the Brandywine.

“We don’t know if he’ll step up or not until we see some of those other tough competitors, but we’re very happy with where he’s at,” said co-owner Tony Infilise of Hudson Standardbreds. “We’re crossing our fingers that he’ll be at least as good (as in 2013) and maybe a bit better.”

(A Trot Insider Exclusive by Paul Delean)



So looking forward to the Sunshine Beach 2014 season. Have you ever had a kidney stone...or a bladder infection, and raced a charity 5k? YIKES! World Record effort with the bladder stone and so laid back a horse doing it...Quebec and a half mile track for the four year old...sounds like old times in the Canadian standardbred biz...we hope and pray...good luck Diane, Conrad and Hudson Standardbreds...we like your chances! Salt Hill

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