Freshmen standardbreds travelled their first mile in qualifying action on Monday (June 7) at Gaitway Farm before a pair of harness racing veterans made their first steps onto the racetrack in 2021.
The card opened with the fastest mile by a two-year-old pacing filly of the session – a 1:54.3 come-from-behind effort by Just Divine. A daughter of Huntsville out of the stakes-winning mare Divine Caroline, Just Divine sat fourth through fractions of :29.4, :59.4 and 1:28.2 before driver Yannick Gingras angled the Ron Burke trainee to the center of the course and darted by her rivals to the finish. With her swift stretch kick, Just Divine paced her final quarter in :25.2 and her final half in just about :54 to photo second-place finisher Always Gonna B You and third-place finisher Jazzed.
Pacing colts and geldings later flaunted their speed with JMs Finaltreasure pacing the fastest mile of the three divisions to win his baby race in 1:53.2. Tim Tetrick piloted the Sweet Lou colt against a quartet of his peers from the Ron Burke barn as he sat pocket to pacesetter Treacherous Tom through splits of :29.3, :59.1 and 1:26.1 before pouncing from the pocket to win by a half length. He paced his final quarter in :26.3 and his final half in just about :54 to down Treacherous Tom, while One Of The Guys finished another nine lengths behind in third.
Of the pair of divisions for freshmen trotting colts and geldings, Global Pandemic went the quickest mile when winning handily in 1:55.4. Yannick Gingras secured a pocket trip for the son of Cantab Hall as Grizzly Bare led the field through a clip of :30.1, :59 and 1:27.1. But when the temposetter lost stride at headstretch, Global Pandemic inherited the front and sprinted home in :28.2 to win by six-and-a-quarter lengths. Laws Of Motion recovered from a break at the start for second and Gaelihill finished another 13 lengths behind in third.
In the last baby race of the day, and the second of two splits for two-year-old trotting fillies, Pink Gypsy trotted the fastest mile of her division with a 1:57.1 effort off a pocket trip. Yannick Gingras sat the Ron Burke trainee in the pocket as Lovin Julie set a tempo of :29.4, :59.2 and 1:28.1. Off the final turn, Gingras fed the daughter of Father Patrick racetrack and scooted by Lovin Julie to win by one-and-three-quarter lengths. Seveyond finished third.
World champion Warrawee Ubeaut made her 2021 debut late in the qualifying session and coasted to a 1:56.1 victory under wraps. The five-year-old millionaire daughter of Sweet Lou strolled to the lead in a :31.1 quarter and gradually accelerated into a 1:00.3 half before hitting a sprint into the final turn, clipping three-quarters in 1:26.3. The Ron Burke trainee slowed into the stretch but held a three-and-three-quarter length margin at the finish as Cinders Baby rallied for second and Odds On Badd Bunny finished third.
In the following qualifier, fellow Burke pupil Atlanta made her six-year-old debut with a 1:54.1 mile from off the pace. Driver Yannick Gingras floated the daughter of Chapter Seven off the wings into fourth through a :29.4 opening quarter and stayed put at the pegs through middle fractions of :58 and 1:25.2. Straightening for the finish, Gingras let his charge loose as she spurted to a five-and-a-half length win over Southwind Sylvestr with Classic Venture another 10 lengths behind in third.
The Monday morning qualifying session is available in its entirety below: