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State Treasurer Wins Molson Pace

Published: May 31, 2013 7:25 pm ET

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State Treasurer and driver Randy Waples defeated reigning O'Brien Award winner Betterthancheddar and two-time defending champion Foiled Again in the $150,000 Molson Pace Invitational on Friday night at The Raceway at the Western Fair District in London, Ont.

Leaving from the inside post position in the featured Friday finale, 6-5 favourite Foiled Again and Yannick Gingras established the lead over trailing tier starter Betterthancheddar, driven by George Brennan, while Aracache Hanover and Doug McNair were left parked out from post two.

Aracache Hanover applied first over pressure to the leader through opening panels of :26.4 and :55.1 while State Treasurer, who got away fourth at the rail, followed his cover before rallying three-wide down the backstretch.

State Treasurer moved up to challenge the sport's richest pacer at the 1:23.1 third quarter mark and began to edge ahead with Keystone Velocity and Western Fair's leading driver Trevor Henry rallying wide off his cover into the stretch.

Foiled Again tried to battle back around the final turn, but couldn't fend off the persistent State Treasurer down the lane. State Treasurer persevered in 1:51.1 with the season-debuting Betterthancheddar squeezing through late for second over Foiled Again. Versado and Scott Zeron came on for fourth with Keystone Velocity earning the final paycheque in fifth.

"This horse just won't quit," said trainer Dr. Ian Moore after the victory. "Since we've had him as a two-year-old he just tries his heart out for you every race he goes."

Raised in Charlottetown by Kenny Arsenault, State Treasurer showed promise to become a Grand Circuit stakes winner as a youngster and was sent to Moore's stable. With a perfect steer by Waples and a little racing luck, he earned his biggest career win on Western Fair's meet-closing card.

"You couldn't ask for a better drive," said Moore. "I figured he would have dropped in front of the eight-horse Betterthancheddar or sit behind. He sat behind him and it worked out perfect. He got a second over tow for a long way and just held Betterthancheddar off at the wire. He raced really well, there's no doubt about it. We had a little luck and you need that sometimes in horse racing."

"All three of them are just fantastic horses," said Waples of the early leaders. "But I really had it in my mind not to leave with him, just to try to keep him up close, because coming off a helmet he's a very dangerous horse."

Waples, who battled traffic and rain coming from Mohawk Racetrack to make the drive in Western Fair's signature race, also praised the pacer's trainer for having him ready to face the best horses in North America and thanked fans for their support.

The victory was State Treasurer's ninth career win and lifted his bankroll to $378,191. The four-year-old son of Real Desire is owned by Sally MacDonald of Souris, P.E.I. and Sophie MacDonald of Regina, Sask.

State Treasurer paid $11.40 to win as the 9-2 third choice.

The Molson Pace undercard featured Ontario Sires Stakes, four City Of London Series Finals and numerous Preferred events.

The 2013 Ontario Sires Stakes program for three-year-old pacing fillies kicked off during Molson Pace Night with three $70,000 Gold divisions.

Favourite Pan Luis Obispo ($5.60) and driver Brad Forward swept to command at the midway point and cruised home for a 1:54.3 three length triumph in the first division for trainer Bob McIntosh and owner-breeder Peter Pan Stables Inc.

Bad Feeling established the early lead with Miss Coco Luck dropping into the pocket spot over Windsong Jacoba during a :28.3 first quarter. But Forward sent Pan Luis Obispo first over from fourth during the second panel and took over the lead by the :58 half-mile mark leaving Notalkingback uncovered on the outside. The daughter of No Pan Intended proceeded to the third quarter mark in 1:25.3 and turned into the stretch with Notalkingback chasing her to the wire. Bad Feeling finished third.

Pan Luis Obispo, a three-time Grassroots winner at two, earned her seventh career win in 11 starts while pushing her lifetime earnings over the $100,000 mark.

Jan It Jackson ($28) followed a similar path to the winner's circle with Luc Ouellette at the reins for trainer Fredrik Persson and owner Brenda Selwyn Waxman of Dundas, Ont.

Kims Royal Day and Phil Hudon were the early leaders through opening fractions of :27 and :56, but Ouellette sent Jan It Jackson to the lead from fourth and reached the third quarter pole in 1:24.1. Kims Royal Day moved back out around the final turn, but couldn't keep pace with the new leader, who opened up by three to win in a new mark of 1:53.2. Ok Fiesty and Yannick Gingras came on for second while Upfrontwhosurlady and Scott Zeron finished third.

The Badlands Hanover filly, who was a runner-up in the SBOA Stakes during her last outing on May 24 at Mohawk Racetrack, now boasts three wins in seven seasonal starts. She has won a quarter of her 16 races lifetime and also surpassed the $100,000 earnings mark with her Friday victory.

Testing out the OSS competition for the first time in her career for Delaware trainer Jason Skinner and co-owner Susan Skinner, Bjs Sweetheart ($13.70) captured the final division with a 1:54.2 triumph in rein to Yannick Gingras.

The No Pan Intended filly fired to the lead from post four, but inside starter Jettin Jamie and Doug McNair swept around the early leaver at the :27.3 first quarter mark. Jettin Jamie carved out middle fractions of :56.3 and 1:25 while the Ouellette-driven Posey Tina applied first over pressure. But Bjs Sweetheart found room at the pylons in the stretch to prevail in her first start on Canadian soil. Leaveumlady and Zeron finished second off a three-hole trip while In The Wheelhouse, driven by Jonathan Drury, came on for third.

The victory was the fourth of the year in nine attempts for Bjs Sweetheart. She has won half of her 16 starts to date while banking $78,705 in purses.

Earlier in the night, Lady Bling ($4.30) kicked off the card with a wrapped up 1:59.3 victory in the first $39,200 City Of London Series Final for filly and mare trotters. Trainer Bob Young's son Scott was in the sulky and had the favourite on the move from third early on before clearing to command at the half-mile mark. Lady Bling later began to draw away from the pack down the backside as she cruised to the nine and a half length score. The sophomore daughter of Striking Sahbra has posted back-to-back wins in four career starts for Alberta owners Blair and Erna Corbeil. Torches Angel and Treaty Notice finished second and third.

Trained and driven by Wayne Henry, Charlie Muscle ($10) found room to edge out of the pocket near the third quarter station in the $40,600 series final for male trotters and capitalized off leader Stonebridge Ultimo's late break in stride to earn his first career win in 1:59.3. The three-year-old Muscle Mass son is owned by Ontario's Shelley Henry, the Estate of Daniel J. McCann, and Murray Brethour. Pc Smart Ash and Classic Kazimir rounded out the top three finishers over two and a half lengths behind.

Canada's World Driving Championship representative Trevor Henry sent Sophie Blu ($5.70) around early leaver Zip Car before the opening quarter and never looked back en route to a 1:55.3 two length victory in the $40,200 final for filly and mare pacers. Zip Car stayed for second while first over Island View finished third. Andrew McCabe trains the Ontario-owned sophomore daughter of Santanna Blue Chip, who is now two-for-seven in her career, for owner Curt Blake.

Favourite Ja El Pocketrocket ($4.80) captured the final $41,400 City Of London Series event for male pacers with a big three-wide brush down the backstretch to score in 1:55.2. The three-year-old son of Santanna Blue Chip was a repeat winner in the series for driver Scott Coulter, trainer Barry Treen and Ontario owner Leonard Gamble. Pacesetter DBS Rosco finished second and One Warrawee was third.

Mach It Big ($2.70), trained by Patrick Shepherd for P.E.I.'s Jonah Moase, was a gate-to-wire winner in the $13,200 Mr Brown Memorial Pace, named for the former Molson Pace starter, in 1:52.4 with Forward aboard while the $8,400 Preferred 2 went to Tim Piroski's pocket-pulling Just Crowned ($6) and J.R. Plante in 1:53.4. Plante also won the $10,500 Fillies & Mares Preferred Pace with Dan Creighton trainee Putnam Mackenzie ($14) holding on for the 1:55 score for Putnam Training Centre Ltd. Aden Peake's Pricevalleyrevitup (8.40) trotted to a 1:56.1 victory in another $13,200 Preferred for Trevor Henry and trainer Randy Marriage.

To view Friday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Friday Results - Western Fair Raceway.

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