Sunshine Beach Surfaces At Mohawk

Published: May 30, 2014 11:27 am EDT

The conditions at Mohawk Racetrack were perfect Friday morning as Sunshine Beach recorded his first charted mile in preparation for his jump to the aged pacing ranks.

Sunshine Beach, in rein to Chris Christoforou for trainer Mark Steacy, headlined the qualifying session at the Campbellville, Ont. oval and was much the best in the sixth dash on Mohawk’s eight-race docket.

After having started from Post 5, Christoforou dropped the four-year-old son of Somebeachsomewhere into the pocket before Winning Dream (driven by Jody Jamieson) clicked off the opening quarter-mile timer in :28.3. Christoforou moved his charge to the lead in the second panel and wasn’t headed the rest of the way.

Sunshine Beach zipped past the half-mile marker in :56.4 and tripped the three-quarters clock in 1:25. He was ahead by seven lengths at the head of the lane and expanded his lead through the stretch. Courtesy of a 27-second final panel, Sunshine Beach went on to hit the wire first in 1:52, more than 11 lengths ahead of his closest competitor.

Sunshine Beach made the news earlier this month when it was announced that the career winner of more than $950,000 in purses added some new owners.

The bay is coming off a very solid three-year-old campaign in which he won the Progress Pace; defeated Captaintreacherous in the Battle of Brandywine and won a division of both the Somebeachsomewhere and the Bluegrass Stakes. Sunshine Beach also finished second in the elimination and final of the Breeders Crown.

Three-year-old Majestic Son colt Harper Blue Chip kicked the session off with a whopping 21-length victory in Race 1. The Mark Steacy trainee recorded a gate-to-wire win 1:55.3 for driver Sylvain Filion. The mile was Harper Blue Chip’s second victorious qualifying effort of his 2014 campaign.

Race 2 saw three-year-old Royal Mattjesty colt Grand Rewards post a wire-to-wire, 1:54.3 win for driver Sylvain Filion and 26-year-old conditioner Rob Fellows. The bay colt was making his third qualifying effort of the season and posted a two-length margin of victory.

Sombrero Hall continued the trend of wire-to-wire winners in Race 3, as the seven-year-old Striking Sahbra gelding cut all the fractions and stopped the clock in 1:55.3 for trainer Randy Van Meer and pilot Rick Zeron. The margin of victory was eight lengths.

Three-year-old Rocknroll Hanover filly Val Di Noto went first-over into the stretch during Race 4 and went on to record a head victory in 1:56.2 for driver Roger Mayotte and trainer Gord Remmen.

The Mario Baillargeon-driven A W converted a pocket ride in Race 2 and trotted off to a two and three-quarter-length win in 2:00.4 for new trainer Benoit Baillargeon.

Driver Randy Waples and trainer Ben Wallace clicked in Race 7 with four-year-old No Pan Intended mare Betit To Getit, who went gate-to-wire and recorded a four-length victory in 1:54.3.

The final qualifying race of the morning saw three-year-old Southwind Lustre filly Zorgwijk Orchid trot to a neck victory in 1:59.3.

To view the harness racing results for Mohawk’s Friday morning qualifying session, click the following link: Friday Results – Mohawk Racetrack (Qualifiers).

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