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New Owners 'Treasure' Cup Colt

Published: June 16, 2012 9:13 am ET

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Sally and Sophie MacDonald never expected the little colt known as State Treasurer would have such a big impact on their lives. They can't even begin to fathom how they'd react if the Dr. Ian Moore trainee takes all the spoils in the $1.5 million Pepsi North America Cup, Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack.

When Sally and Sophie purchased State Treasurer for a mere $6,500 in the 2010 Harrisburg Yearling sale, it was their first standardbred horse.

“My husband and his father had horses for many years and I was never involved,” said Sally, who calls Souris, Prince Edward Island home.

In fact, Allan, Sally’s husband, is a long-time horseman, who once trained and drove his own horses in Charlottetown. Paul, who is married to Sophie, is Allan’s nephew.

Since Paul and Sophie had never owned horses, they decided to go to Harrisburg with Allan and Sally to look for a yearling.

“It was my husband who picked out State Treasurer,” said Sally. “It was decided that the ownership would go in mine and Sophie’s name. It just made a big difference. We took such an interest and followed him. It is very exciting.”

“It was very exciting for me because I got to learn a lot about harness racing,” explained Sophie, who is a resident of Regina, Saskatchewan. “I didn’t know anything about it.”

The most rewarding aspect of owning State Treasurer? For Sophie, it's the bond she now shares with the son of Real Desire, as well as Allan and Sally.

“We love Sally and Allan,” she stated. “We got to spend more time with them. They are very good friends now. Well, they are family, but they are friends, too. We got to know their kids better and they got to know ours.”

“I love that horse,” Sophie added. “I try to spend as much time as I can, even though he is far away from home. He is a racehorse at the end of the day, but he is really easy to like.”

Both couples try as often as possible to fly to Ontario to visit State Treasurer, watch him race and catch up with their newfound friends.

“We meet in Toronto and go to the races,” said Sally. “It’s just been a terrific experience all the way around.”

Dr. Moore conditions the brown colt, who has four wins, three seconds, and one third-place finish in 14 lifetime outings and $119,386 in career earnings.

“The ladies that own him are having a ball so I hope they have a little bit of luck,” said the P.E.I. native, who now resides in Rockwood, Ont. “I will do all I can to ensure that.”

After State Treasurer finished fourth to Dapper Dude in his Pepsi North America Cup elimination on June 9 and was just beaten a half-length, Dr. Moore noted how thrilled Sophie was.

“I got a very aggressive hug [Saturday night] from her, so I’m still hurting,” he quipped following the race. “It is very exciting for them. The horse owes them nothing. They’ve had a few big offers on him and they all have been turned down. They are going to keep him.”

Sophie is understandably ecstatic to be represented in the $1.5 million classic.

“I went back to the barn,” she said. “I was running. I was hugging Jenny, the person who takes care of State Treasurer. She takes very good care of him and then I saw Ian and I just gave him a big hug. I was very happy about it.

“It’s kind of interesting when you don’t have any expectations because he was pretty inexpensive and he is a little on the small side,” she continued. “Just to see how well he is doing, we just got really excited about it.”

But on Tuesday morning, the day of post position draw, she was a bundle of nerves.

“I was sick to my stomach all morning because I knew it was the day that his fate was basically decided,” said Sophie, who is the first Saskatchewan owner to have a colt in the Cup final. “He needs all the luck he can get at this point. I was in meetings all day in Montreal. I just was hoping to get a text from either my husband or Ian. When I got it I was just ecstatic.”

State Treasurer drew post six.

When her three-year-old colt lines up behind the gate Saturday for the richest pacing event in the world, Sophie has modest expectations. She knows State Treasurer will give his best.

“When I do meetings and presentations at work, I have been using State Treasurer a lot to break the ice,” explained the Vice-President of Agribusiness and Venture Capital at Farm Credit Canada. “Before my presentations, I would show a race and when I talk to my employees about what determination means to me, I often use a race of State Treasurer’s as an example. In a lot of his races he comes from the back. He never gives up.

“People around me hear a lot about my horse whether he does good or bad,” she added. “I love to talk about it. You know how it is when you are passionate about can’t shut up about it.”

She's hoping to have plenty more to talk about after Saturday night.

Here is a look at the field in post position order with drivers and morning line odds listed:

$1.5 Million Pepsi North America Cup
Post Position - Horse - Driver - Morning Line Odds
1 - Bettors Edge - Tim Tetrick - 30-1
2 - Dapper Dude - John Campbell - 8-1
3 - Time To Roll - Andy Miller - 12-1
4 - Sweet Lou - Dave Palone - 3-5
5 - Thinking Out Loud - Randy Waples - 12-1
6 - State Treasurer - David Miller - 20-1
7 - A Rocknroll Dance - Yannick Gingras - 10-1
8 - Warrawee Needy - Jody Jamieson - 9-2
9 - Pet Rock - Brian Sears - 15-1
10 - Simply Business - Ron Pierce - 25-1
AE1 - Easy Again – TBA


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