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Charlottetown Hosts Maritime Top Guns

Published: June 18, 2010 7:05 pm ET

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The region’s best horses have been entered to race in one of the most anticipated programs of the 2010 season Saturday at Red Shores Racetrack & Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park. Post time for the 13-dash card is 7 p.m. The event carries two Maritime Breeders Finals for fillies and colts and two eliminations of the Cecil Ladner Memorial attracting some of the best invitational stars to the city oval.

The first match-up comes in the Ken Starratt Memorial for three-year-old fillies when Meridian Magic meets fellow elimination winner Bettim Laura in the $29,750 final. Both fillies are undefeated this year so one streak will come to an end.

Meridian Magic has drawn Post 3 for driver Kenny Arsenault and owners Barry Martin and James Gillis of Sydney, NS. The filly lines up alongside Bettim Laura with Jeff Lilley driving for Danny Purcell of Newport, NS from Post 4. It’s going to be interesting to see what takes place when the wings fold.

Racing analyst Les MacIsaac is backing Meridian Magic. “She's never been off the board, has 14 wins in 17 career starts and will be very close to $100,000 with a win [Saturday]. How do you go against her?” said MacIsaac. The host of Racing Tips in the race program admits Bettim Laura is hot right now. “She's a versatile type with great gate speed and a dangerous finishing kick. As good as she is it's going to be tough keeping her winning streak intact.”

Some other contenders include rail-sitter C H Yocoohno, for catch driver Gilles Barrieau and trainer Ken Arsenault, and Shesa Mint, who had no luck in the draw and will need to navigate from Post 8 for driver Mark Bradley and trainer Mike McGuigan.

The other MBA Final for three-year-old pacing colts has been named in honour of Atlantic Post Calls founder Doug Harkness. Allbentouttashape puts his perfect record on the line in the $24,400 event against morning line favourite Mr Salming and elim winner Island Redemption. The other finalists include Island Dominator, Ultimate Yankee, TM Top Gun, Clay Mater and Rugged Coast.

The action-packed card also features two eliminations of the Cecil Ladner Memorial. The series has attracted some of the best horses in the Maritimes, two newcomers and one of the fastest horses ever to travel Northside Downs.

In the first elimination, This Is Your Night, a new purchase from Halifax owner David MacDonald, draws the rail. The four-year-old arrives from Hoosier Park in Indiana with charted miles in the 1:54 range. Darren Crowe gets the driving assignment. The power packed field includes CL Eighty, St Pete Star, Notacent Tobemade, Pans O Silver, BJ Cruiser, Argentina and San Marco Hanover.

The second elimination will feature Shifty Shadow, who blistered the Northside Downs oval in 1:55.3. Owner Dan Lewis of Blacketts Lake, NS paid the entry fee and regular pilot Edgar Jacobs will do the driving. Another newcomer has been listed in the Island racing ranks with the arrival of Blue Star Outlaw from the Ontario racing circuit. Driver Jason Hughes takes over the training duties for owner Don MacRae of Vernon Bridge. McHales Gravy, Mighty And Strong, Life Savior, Hilo, Outlawpositivcharg and Western Deadline complete the line up.

The action will be streaming live at www.harnessracingpei.com, just click on the live video feed. The Bell-Aliant Race Day show returns Saturday, June 26.

To view Saturday's entries, click here.

(With files from Red Shores)


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