Past Quebec Champions Take Final Prelims

D Gs De Vito winning at Hippodrome 3R
Published: July 2, 2023 04:54 pm EDT

After being postponed a week by unacceptable air quality, the third and final preliminary round of the Quebec-Bred Series for older pacers took place on Sunday, July 2 at Hippodrome 3R and previous winners within the Quebec program defeated the current “in-form” horses ahead of the $30,000 championships next Sunday. Each event raced for $6,500.

The last prelim for the Quebec-bred males showed its complexion early when driver Jonathan Lachance would not let D Gs De Vito (pictured above) give up the lead to a challenging Mickeymaksomespeed, forcing that challenger into the pocket before a :27 opener.

D Gs De Vito, a Sportswriter gelding who won his divisional championship at three in 2019, then received a long sustained challenge from favoured Aladdin, fastest pacer of the year at 3R by virtue of his 1:54.2 mile, as the two passed middle stations of :57.1 and 1:26.

In the stretch, D Gs De Vito had the most and won in 1:55.1, with late-closing Cyclone Joe 1-1/4 lengths short in second and Mickeymaksomespeed third ahead of hard-luck Aladdin.

Guylaine Fortin trains D Gs De Vito for owner/breeder Daniel Suprenant.

In the final preliminary for mares, the Bettors Delight distaff Celia Bayama, who won her Quebec-Bred Series title at two in 2020, went wire-to-wire, holding off Kiss Me Bad, successful in her two previous prelim starts, in 1:56.2.

Stephane Brosseau guided the winning mare through fractions of :28.1, :57.3 and 1:26.3, with the favoured Kiss Me Bad having to travel the difficult uncovered route, and Celia Bayama was able to hold on to the wire by three-quarters of a length, winning for trainer Jean-Francois Reid, also co-owner with Marie-Claude Reid and Mario Menard.

In the top race for non-Quebec program horses, a $6,500 Preferred Pace, 10-1 shot Sports Bettor and driver Jocelyn Gendron, just about the hottest driver at the track recently, got soft fractions up front, then was able to defeat potential pocket rocket Twomacsonemach by 1-1/4 lengths in 1:58.3. The Sportswriter gelding is now two-for-two since recently being acquired by trainer Kevin Maguire and Ecuries Maguire Inc.

Nicole Gagne celebrated her first training win in Sunday's finale as five-year-old pacing mare Better KissThe Men took the lead and drew off by nine lengths in the stretch for a 1:58.1 score. Simon Delisle drove the favoured daughter of Betterthancheddar to her first win of the season. Gagne, picking up her first career win in 14 starts, co-owns Better KissThe Men with Pierre Fiset.

All 10 races on the Sunday card went in 2:00 or faster. Pascal Berube guided three winners while Stephane Brosseau and Jonathan Lachance drove two success stories.

Hippodrome 3R will race this coming Friday at 4 p.m. and on Sunday at noon -- the latter card, as mentioned, containing the $30,000 Quebec-Bred Series Championships for both trotters and pacers. For free race programs, visit

To view Sunday's harness racing results, click the following link: Sunday Results - Hippodrome 3R.

(With files from Quebec Jockey Club)

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