Stars of the Ontario Sires Stakes program – both past and present – converged on Georgian Downs on Saturday for this year’s Gold Rush extravaganza
Here's a complete recap of the rich night of racing:
Ontario Sires Stakes $130,000 Gold Series Final – Three-year-old filly pace
Windsong Filou kicked off the stakes action with a 13-1 upset over heavily favoured Yellow Diamond. That 1-5 favourite sliced out fractions of :27, :54.2 and 1:23.2 before being overtaken by Windsong Filou and driver Keith Oliver. The Carl Jamieson-trained daughter of Astreos-Jasper Avenue stopped the clock in a career-best clocking of 1:52.1 en route to defeating Shacked Up and Yellow Diamond.
Jamieson shares ownership on the career winner of $212,410 with Tom Kyron, Dr. Mike Wilson and Lobro Stables. It was her first win of the season in eight trips postward.
Ontario Sires Stakes $130,000 Gold Series Final – Three-year-old colt and gelding trot
Much to the delight of the favourite players, Equity showed no mercy to his trotting counterparts for the team of driver Jack Moiseyev and trainer Charalambos Christoforou. The homebred son of Kadabra-Earl Of My Dreams marched to the top and took the field through fractions of :28, :57.1 and 1:27.3 before jetting home in :28.2 for the 1:56 decision. Angeldrive was second best and Hour Lavec rounded out the top three.
It was the fourth consecutive victory for Equity, who now boasts a 6-1-0 record in his first eight starts after being unraced as a rookie. The gelding’s bank account soared to $135,000 for partners Charalambos Christoforou of Campbellville and Banjo Farms of Toronto, Ontario.
Ontario Sires Stakes $130,000 Gold Series Final – Three-year-old filly trot
O’Brien Award winner Elusive Desire delivered on her 1-5 pari-mutuel promise for the tandem of driver Paul MacDonell and trainer Mike Keeling, who watched Canada’s Two-Year-Old Trotting Filly of the Year in 2008 post a gate-to-wire win in 1:56.3. She chopped out panels of :28.1, :58.2 and 1:27.2 before summoning up a :29.1 final frame to hold off SOS Respect and Warrawee Kava.
P C Wellwood Enterprises Inc., Charles Armstrong and Robert Fasken share ownership on the multi-talented miss, who won for the third time in six starts this season. She put together a 3-for-14 record in her rookie season, which was capped off with a win in the $300,000 OSS Super Final. To date, she has banked $538,239.
Ontario Sires Stakes $130,000 Gold Series Final – Three-year-old colt and gelding pace
Luc Ouellette found late room to race with OK Boromir, who rallied to win in a time of 1:53.1 for trainer Frank Baker, Jr., who co-owns the three-year-old son of No Pan Intended-Double Crème with Wray and Janet Wilson of Thorndale, Ontario. The colt hauled down Primary Purpose, who finished second, and Waffles And Cream, who rounded out the top three.
It was the fourth win of the season in 10 trips postward for OK Boromir, who now boasts lifetime earnings in excess of $279,000 – not bad for a $14,000 purchase from the 2007 Forest City Yearling Sale!
$116,000 Masters Trotting Series for Mares
Not even a first-over trip could derail Gostreet, who turned in a gusty effort to take her biggest payday to date for trainer/driver Lyle MacArthur. The five-year-old Angus Hall-Rose Street Jewel miss wore down race favourite Jtlady Strong in deep stretch en route to posting the impressive score in 1:57.3. Jtlady Strong held on for the runner-up spot and third prize went to Whatever Lolawants.
Linda Wellwood of St. George and Tammy Aspden of Caistor Centre, Ontario share ownership on the 19-time winner, who has put together an eye-catching 11-1-2 record in just 19 trips to the starting gate this season. She has potted in excess of $132,000 this season and more than $224,000 to date.
$111,000 Masters Pacing Series for Mares
Mike Saftic lulled the field to sleep with To Helen Back, who cruised through sensible splits of :27.3, :56.4 and 1:24 before turning on the afterburners over the final quarter of the mile. A 28-second final frame was just enough to hold off the 1-2 favourite Dreamfair Eternal in a time of 1:52. Southwind Swallow grabbed the show dough.
John Pentland conditions the six-year-old daughter of Astreos-Rocket Science for owners Mike and Shunock of Dorchester, Ontario. The victory was her fourth of the season, and it was the 21st of her career. The mare has banked more than $168,000 this season and $962,390 to date.
$115,000 Masters Pacing Series for Horses and Geldings
It was a piece of cake for Bigtime Ball, who steamrolled over his male pacing counterparts for the second week-in-a-row for the team of driver Paul MacDonell and trainer Gord Irwin. The speedy five-year-old son of Presidential Ball-Keystone Trinidad took over shortly after the :27.2 opener and proceeded to hammer out fractions of :55 and 1:23 en route to the 1:50.4 decision. It was seven lengths back to runner-up Mr Saratoga, with Lucky Man rounding out the top three.
The homebred, owned by Irwin Stables Inc., now boasts a 6-2-0 record in nine starts this season. He has banked in excess of $203,000 this year and more than $807,000 in his career.
$115,000 Masters Pacing Series for Horses and Geldings
O’Brien Award-winning driver Paul MacDonell notched his third stakes victory on the card with Define The World, who won as he pleased in wire-to-wire fashion for trainer John Bax and owner/breeder Al Libfeld of Pickering, Ontario. The four-year-old son of Duke Of York-Venice Holiday laid down panels of :27.3, :57 and 1:26.3 before kicking home in :29.1 to post the 1:55.4 decision over Nureyev and Earlsact.
Sent off as the 3-5 favourite, Define The World visited the winner’s circle for the third time this and for the 17th time in his career. He has banked over $120,000 this season, and that has helped lift his lifetime bankroll to $874,781.
To view Saturday’s harness racing results, click here.