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Blue Star Jet Opens Sires Stakes

Published: July 1, 2016 9:16 pm ET

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Blue Star Jet and driver Mike Hennessy opened the 2016 Alberta Sires Stakes season with a record performance at Century Downs Racetrack and Casino on Canada Day (Friday, July 1).

Blue Star Jet ($4) blazed to a 1:54.4 victory in the first of three $5,000 Alberta Plainsman eliminations for three-year-old male pacers. His winning time was a new track record for three-year-old geldings, lowering his own mark by one full second that he had established in a mid-April qualifying mile.

Sent postward as the even-money favourite following his Gordon Rumpel Stakes victory on June 12, the Blue Burner gelding left from post six and carved out fractions of :28.4, :58.4 and 1:26.3 before sealing the deal with a :28.1 final quarter. Wrangler Cash followed two and three-quarter lengths behind in second and Gray Zee finished third.

Blue Star Jet is owned by trainer Rod Hennessy and Edmonton's Lorne Duffield. A two-time Sires Stakes winner at two, Blue Star Jet now boasts victories in half of his 14 career starts for earnings over $73,094.

Another son of Blue Burner, Outlaw Turn N Burn ($7.40) won the next elimination in 1:56.1 for driver J.F. Gagne, trainer Donna Sarin and owner 8113564 Canada Ltd.

Outlaw Turn N Burn protected his pocket position while favourite Blue Star Maverick and Hennessy kept Trustee parked out through first half fractions of :28.2 and :58.1. After the popular pacesetter turned back his early challenger to three-quarters in 1:26.4, Outlaw Turn N Burn converted from the two-hole and went by Blue Star Maverick in the stretch for the two and three-quarter length victory. Make It Big came on for third.

Prairie Mystic ($6.30) won the other elimination for the sophomore colts in 1:58 flat as the 2-1 favourite off a three-hole trip for trainer/driver Brad Watt and co-owner Bob Watt.

The Mystery Chase colt, who was claimed for $9,000 by his current connections on May 1, made his move down the backstretch and confronted front-runner Keep Coming (:28.2, :58.3, 1:27.2) at the third quarter mark. Prairie Mystic eventually defeated that rival, who fought back in the stretch to make it a photo finish. Icy Blue Scooter rallied home for third, finishing just a half-length behind.

The fillies also competed in three eliminations for the Alberta Princess with Jet Blue Burner ($3.70) matching her Wild Rose Stakes winning time of 1:58.1 in the first split for trainer/driver Travis Cullen, who also co-owns with Jodie Cullen, Keith Hannah and Dwayne Taylor.

Apple Blossom Time and Joyful Sound traded turns on the lead past the :28.3 opening quarter before Jet Blue Burner began to advance first over from sixth throughout middle splits of :58.2 and 1:27.1. The Blue Burner filly fought past the early leaders, who ended up finishing third in a dead-heat, and held off the wide-rallying Glamorgal in the stretch to win by a head.

Monstrous ($18.50) earned her fourth straight victory as she prevailed in 1:57.3 over 4-5 favourite Outlawsurshotshark in another elimination win photo with Ed Hensley aboard for trainer Darryl Cutting. Warren Fuller owns and bred the Allamerican Navajo filly, who was sent postward as the 8-1 third wagering choice.

Monstrous, who already boasts Bev Sears and Wild Rose Stakes titles this year, moved up on the cover of the popular Cullen trainee Outlawsurshotshark and out-sprinted that foe to the wire. Ba Bye Ceia Later had taken the lead early from post nine and fronted the field through fractions of :28.2, :59.3 and 1:27.4 before finishing third, three and a quarter lengths behind the top pair.

Meadowlark Farm's homebred filly Divas Dragonfly ($3.20) dominated in the third and fastest filly elimination, winning by nine and a half lengths in 1:57.2 with Jamie Gray in the sulky for trainer Carl Archibald. The win was the first this year for the 2015 Super Final champion, who was the 3-5 favourite.

Divas Dragonfly was parked out through a :29.1 first quarter before working to the front. The daughter of Mystery Chase then carved out middle splits of :59.2 and 1:28.2 before drawing away from her competition. Outlawtriggerhappy and Cenalta Artistry were the best of the rest.

The fillies will return to Century Downs for their Alberta Princess final on Saturday, July 9 while the colts will face off in the Alberta Plainsman final on Sunday, July 10.

To view Friday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Friday Results - Century Downs.

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