view counter
view counter

Trotters Close Out Southland Festival

Published: July 26, 2015 10:25 pm ET

No Comments | Jump to Comments

The 2015 Southland Festival of Racing came to a close on Sunday night at Balmoral Park with a trio of Illinois-bred events for diagonally-gaited two and three-year-olds sharing top billing on the 10-race program.

The “boys” kicked off the action in race two with a compact field of six state-bred colts and geldings battling in the $36,500 Plesac Stake.

After back-to-back scores to kick off his career, Quaid Racing LLC’s Wrightwood was bet as though defeat was out of the question and the 1-9 favourite never really gave his legion of backers an anxious moment as he trotted off to an effortless one-length decision in 1:59.3 for driver Casey Leonard.

Confidently handled by Balmoral’s leading reinsman, the son of Powerful Emotion—Racy Roz settled in comfortably at the back of the pack as Mr Strata (Mike Oosting) led the short field through pedestrian opening splits of :30.4 and 1:01.2.

Hustling up on the outside of horses as the field moved around the final bend, Wrightwood swept into command just before the field passed the three-quarter-mile mark in 1:30.4.

Finding another gear as the field straightened for the money, the Nelson Willis trainee trotted home in :28.4 to make it three in a row to open what looks like a promising career. Mr Strata held on for second while JD Cheese (John De Long) shook loose late to rally for the show dough.

With the win Wrightwood, who returned $2.20, $2.10 and $2.10, now sports a perfect three-for-three slate with $24,250 in earnings for his proud connections.

Freshman trotting fillies were next on the docket as a full field of 10 youngsters squared off in the $40,000 Fox Valley Flan Stake.

After several of the top contenders made breaks early in the mile, the Joel Smith-trained Shez A Devil Woman took advantage of some slow fractions as she reported home with a half-length victory in front stepping fashion while stopping the clock in 2:00.4.

Whisked to the front from post position four by driver Dale Hiteman, the daughter of Powerful Emotion—Wealthy Women stepped through splits of :29.4, 101.2 and 1:32 while going along unchallenged on the front end.

With plenty still in reserve, Shez A Devil Woman kept the first over Rocknprincessabbie (Todd Warren) at bay through the stretch while also staving off a bid in the passing lane from Awfully Emotional (Mike Oosting), who wound up settling for a third-place cheque.

After three straight second-place finishes to open her career, Shez A Devil Woman returned $11.60, $4.00 and $3.40 while upping her career earnings to $24,500 for owners Anthony Munoz, Christopher Mroz and Marion Ratliff.

Sophomore trotting fillies closed out the weekend’s action with a field of seven lining up behind the gate to battle in the $39,000 Fox Valley Evita Stake.

Proving once again that she’s the one to beat in this very competitive division, Homer Hochstetler and Robert Buddig’s Persuasive Look eked out yet another victory, holding on gamely to win by a hard fought head in 1:56.4 for Casey Leonard.

Sent right to the top by Leonard, the home-bred daughter of Powerful Emotion—Black N Bluegenes carved out splits of :29.3, :58.3 and 1:28 while cruising on the front end.

Poised for a thrilling stretch drive, which this division has provided several times this season, the Homer Hochstetler-trained miss appeared to be collared by the pocket-sitting Bi Polar Rose (Travis Seekman) with less than a sixteenth of a mile to go. Gamely fighting back in the final strides, the good-looking bay poked a head in front at the finish line to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. Bi Polar Rose was forced to settle for the bridesmaid role on this night while Fox Valley Yoko (Kyle Wilfong) was a close up third in this heated battle.

Dispatched as the 4-5 favourite by the betting public, Persuasive Look returned $3.60, $2.40 and $2.10 while running her career record to 8-6-5 in 24 starts with earnings of $136,492.

(Balmoral Park)

view counter

© 2021 Standardbred Canada. All rights reserved. Use of this site signifies your agreement and compliance with the legal disclaimer and privacy policy.

Firefox 3 Best with IE 7 Built with Drupal