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Jamieson Preps For Title Defense

Published: June 15, 2016 9:11 am ET

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Fresh off a win at the inaugural All-Star Drivers Tournament in Quebec at Hippodrome 3R, Jody Jamieson is gearing up for the Ontario Regional Driving Championship on Friday, June 24 at Grand River Raceway.

A first or second place finish will allow him to move on to defend his National Driving Champion title in October and if successful, become Canada’s representative to the 2017 World Driving Championship.

Jamieson, who has amassed over 7,200 wins and $114 million in earnings during his career, has represented Canada at the World Driving Championships on five separate occasions, and was twice crowned Champion; the first time in 2001 when he made his international driving debut in Finland and the most recent in 2011 when it was hosted in the U.S. After winning the 2014 National Driving Championship, he had the honour of representing Canada in the 2015 World Driving Championship held in Australia, where he finished in fifth spot.

It would be a huge achievement for Jamieson to represent Canada at the 2017 World Driving Championship, but an even bigger one for the three-time O’Brien Award Driver of the Year to compete and win on Canadian soil.

“I helped convince the Standardbred Canada Board to take the World Driving Championship in 2017 as it's the 250th anniversary of horse racing,” explained Jamieson.

To get there, he will first have to battle it out against a field of Ontario’s top drivers. “I feel that maybe the guys are thinking that they have to beat me because I've won multiple times. So, that makes me want to win even more!”

When asked who his biggest competition is, Jamieson responded “guys like Trevor Henry, Doug McNair, James MacDonald and Billy Davis Jr. are right up there but it'd be silly to discount Nick Steward, Bob McClure, Robert Shepherd and Alfie Carroll, who are dying to show the world their skills.”

“I've been watching a few races at Grand River recently and keeping an eye on horses. That's really all I need to do,” enlightened Jody on his prep for the upcoming regional.

Drivers will receive points based on their finishing position and the top two drivers from each regional competition will advance to the 2016 National Driving Championship scheduled for Friday, October 14 at The Raceway at Western Fair District. “I love the format and I hope that the drivers will again be able to draft their horses for the NDC," said Jamieson. "That was probably the most fun part of it all!”

The schedule for the Regional Championships are as follows:

Ontario Regional -- Grand River Raceway; Friday, June 24

Atlantic Regional -- Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at Charlottetown Driving Park; Saturday, June 25

Western Regional -- Century Downs; Sunday, June 26

Quebec / Eastern Ontario Regional -- Hippodrome 3R; Tuesday, July 12

National Driving Championship – The Raceway at Western Fair District – Friday, October 14

The winner of the NDC will represent Canada in harness racing's 2017 World Driving Championship, hosted by Standardbred Canada in concert with the World Trotting Conference in August. The 2017 WDC will kick off in the west at Century Downs Racetrack and Casino in Calgary, AB. The drivers will then head to Ontario for the next two legs. Mohawk Racetrack in Campbellville will host the second leg followed by the third leg at Georgian Downs in Innisfil. The action then moves to Quebec where Hippodrome 3R will host the fourth leg. Finally, drivers will head to Prince Edward Island and Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at Charlottetown Driving Park for the fifth and final leg of the Championship.

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