A quartet of local fillies was victorious in Ontario Sires Stakes Grassroots action at Flamboro Downs on Saturday afternoon as the Dundas oval hosted an all-female card of racing.
Serving as a prelude to the $221,000 Ellamony Classic for aged pacing mares, the province’s three-year-old trotting fillies battled in 11 Grassroots divisions, and Can I Say kicked things off on a positive note for the local squad with a one and three-quarter length win in the first $24,000 split.
Trainer-driver Garrett Whelan piloted Can I Say to the 1:59.1 score, an off the pace effort that saw the Fourth And One daughter circle around the field after starting from the trailing Post 9. The win was the first this season for Can I Say, who is owned by Terry and Clarence Devos of Langton and James Whelan of Troy. Winbak Audit and Northern Senorita, who is owned by R A W Equine Inc. of Burlington, Karen Hudon of Acton and Herbert Boggs of Duncan, B.C., rounded out the top three in the opening division.
Four races later Bruce Richardson opted for front-end tactics to land Ithinkshestheone in the winner’s circle for trainer John Holding of Campbellville and his partners Morley Bosomworth of Elora and Bryan Montgomery of Fergus. The 2:00.2 win was the Angus Hall filly’s first in 14 lifetime starts. Fan favourite Movement could not catch Ithinkshestheone in the stretch and had to settle for second with Libby Hall picking up third-place honours.
Trainer-driver Eddie Green and Fiorentina also held on for a narrow front-end victory in the ninth division, besting Phoenix Goal and Enda The Hall by a nose in a personal best 2:00.1. Owned by Kristine Hill of Ohsweken, Angus Hall miss Fiorentina now boasts a record of five wins, one second and one third in 10 sophomore starts.
The other local filly to find success at Flamboro on Saturday was Dancehall Mistress, who dominated the final division with a 13 length 1:58.4 triumph. Out Of The Hat and Puta Ring On It were well behind Dancehall Mistress, another daughter of Angus Hall, in second and third. Steve Condren engineered Dancehall Mistress’s first lifetime victory for trainer Brad Maxwell and owners David Goodrow Stable of Cambridge, Douglas Millard of Woodstock, P G Van Camp Stables of Port Perry and Glenn Tarver of Scarborough.
Milton resident Randy Waples picked up a pair of Grassroots victories, piloting Barbie And Ken to a 2:00 win for trainer Bob McIntosh of Windsor and his partners C S X Stables of Liberty Center, Ohio and Dave Boyle of Bowmanville, and Autumn Treasure to a 2:00.2 score for trainer Dr. A.J. Peter Johnston and owners Idylwood Stables Inc. of Peterborough and Watkins Equine Inc. of Newcastle.
The quickest mile of the 11 Grassroots divisions was clocked by former Gold Final winner Counter Pointe, who sprinted home to a 1:58.1 win for trainer-driver Wayne Henry of Arthur and his partners Daniel McCann of Parkhill and Jeffrey Thomson of Chesley .Amber Kadabra was just two and one-half lengths behind the Striking Sahbra daughter, while Alana Bananna was eight more lengths to the rear in third.
The other Grassroots trophies went home with Stormont Fried (1:59); Giant Clash (1:58.3); Majic Trend (1:59.2); and De La Noche (1:59.3).
The sophomore trotting fillies will resume their Grassroots rivalry at Rideau Carleton Raceway on July 6.
Ontario Sires Stakes excitement is back at Flamboro Downs on Wednesday, June 27 with three $40,000 Gold eliminations for the two-year-old trotting colts. Post time for Wednesday’s event is 1 p.m.
To view Saturday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Saturday Results - Flamboro Downs.