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Freshmen Repeat In Gold Stakes

Published: July 19, 2015 2:30 am ET

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Back at Mohawk Racetrack for their second Gold Leg on Saturday, Ontario’s elite two-year-old pacing colts looked every bit as sharp as they had in their debut.

Two winners from the season opener went head-to-head in the first $105,000 division and it was Voracity that came out on top with a 1:53.1 score over Heavymetal Hanover, Stonebridge Beach and July 11 division winner Nvestment Bluechip.

Milton, Ont. resident Randy Waples piloted Voracity to the one and one-half length victory for trainer Tony Alagna of Manalapan, New Jersey and his partners Brad Grant of Milton, Ont. and John Fodera of Staten Island, New York. The partners acquired the son of Sportswriter from last fall’s Lexington Selected Yearling Sale for $47,000.

“I sold Brad Sandbetweenurtoes and we discussed buying a few yearlings together last fall, and Voracity was one of our purchases,” said Alagna of his new partnership with Grant. “Brad is a fantastic owner and partner because he understands the ups and downs of the business and we have had some good success in a short amount of time together.”

In just two starts, Voracity has already banked $87,500 for the partners and will have ample opportunity to add to that tally in the remaining Ontario Sires Stakes and open stake events.

“Voracity is heavily staked,” noted Alagna. “The Metro Pace, Breeders Crown, Governor's Cup and all the major events at three as well.”

Voracity and his peers make their third Gold Series start at Rideau Carleton Raceway on August 13.

Betting Line earned his second Gold Series trophy with an impressive 1:51.4 triumph in the other division. The Bettors Delight son and driver Chris Christoforou took command of the race heading for the halfway marker and pulled away to a three length victory over Carolina Hurricane and Semi Automatic.

Campbellville, Ont. resident Christoforou — who won three freshman pacing colt Grassroots events at Mohawk on Friday — was in the race bike for trainer Casie Coleman of Cambridge, Ont., her partners in the West Wins Stable of Cambridge, Christine Calhoun of Chatham, Ont. and Mac Nichol of Burlington, Ont.

“He won very handy again, Chris never spoke to him,” said Coleman, who was captivated by the colt the first time she saw him at Fair Winds Farm in Cream Ridge, New Jersey.

“When I first saw him at Fair Winds Farm, about a month before the sale, he was a jaw dropper and I knew I had to have him,” recalled Coleman, who anted up $60,000 for the youngster at the Harrisburg Yearling Sale. “He was one of the best colts I have ever seen in a field.”

Like Voracity, Betting Line will have the opportunity to race against North America’s best if he continues to perform the way he has in the first two Gold Series events.

“I believe and hope he is a Grand Circuit colt,” said Coleman.

Mohawk Racetrack fans will get their second look at the colts’ feminine counterparts on Monday evening as the two-year-old pacing fillies return to the Campbellville oval for their second Gold Series event. The fillies are featured in Races 1, 2 and 9 on the 7:25 p.m. program, with Ontario Sires Stakes record holder Thatsoveryverynice getting post one in the second $70,000 division.

In regular racing action, Shamballa earned his second straight win in the $34,000 Preferred Pace -- this time in a new lifetime mark of 1:48 flat. Driver Rick Zeron trains, drives and co-owns the five-year-old Somebeachsomewhere gelding with Tao Racing LLC of Pompano Beach, Florida. Evenin Of Pleasure and Spinfiniti finished second and third, respectively.

To view Saturday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Saturday Results - Mohawk Racetrack.

(With files from OSS)

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