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Ontario Owners Celebrate Ohio Success

Published: July 9, 2017 12:59 am ET

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The six Ohio Sires Stakes (OHSS) for freshman trotting colts provided the generous Northfield Park crowd with thrills, unexpected triumphs and bitter disappointments on an unseasonably cool Saturday evening, July 8.

Each OHSS contest carried a purse of $40,000 in the first of four legs for two-year-old trotters. The first division was a raced marred by numerous breaking youngsters, including 1-5 favourite and New Jersey invader, Wolfgang, who broke at the start and again in the third turn.

Taking advantage of all his rivals’ miscues was the Steve Carter-trained Countthebenjamins. Sent off at odds of 8-1, the son of Dejarmbro returned $18.40 to win as he scored his first career victory, timed in 1:59 with Chris Page at the lines. Bred by Darwin and Ann Shaver, Countthebenjamins was awarded the victory when the 24-1 longshot Lottafightleftinme (Ronnie Wrenn Jr.) ran at the wire after leading throughout most of the mile. QB Kemp (Peter Wrenn) notched show honours at 11-1.

Countthebenjamins is the 10th foal out of the Veeba Rova mare Benns Riverdance, 4, 1;57.f ($455,145) and is a full brother to: Stormy Kromer 3, 1:56.4s ($101,603), and a half-brother to: Dancehall Mistress (by Angus Hall) 4, 1:52.3s ($445,020); Blazing Benny (by Angus Hall) 7, 1:55.2h ($312,004); Party On The River (by Kadabra) 4, 1:56.3 ($134,291); and Little River Dance (by Angus Hall) 4, 1:56.1m ($83,421).

Lima Son made an impressive showing in his first start in the United States by storming to a two and three-quarter length victory in the second OHSS division for driver/trainer Anthony MacDonald. The bay son of My MVP used a three-wide move around the final turn to wear down the leading Dance Withsomebody (Robin Miller) at the wire. Twilight Twist (Ryan Stahl) was third, seven and a half lengths behind, in a mile timed in 1:59.1. Bred by Ohio’s Steiner Stock farm, Lima Son is owned by Thestable Lima Son Group of Guelph, Ont. He is the fifth foal out of the Angus Hall mare Spirit Of The Law, and is a half-brother to Lima Skye (by Cantab Hall) 2, 1:59.1f ($33,119).

Trainer Herb LeVan harnessed Manny L to capture the third OHSS test in 1:59.2 with Kayne Kauffman at the lines in a wire-to-wire performance. The son of Manofmanymission captured his third event in five starts and pushed his career earnings to $24,590 for owners LeVan Stables and Louis LeVan of Woodstock, Ohio. Rival Haul N Dash (Kurt Sugg) was second, while Sand Cash (Ryan Stahl) was third.

Manny L, who was sent off at 9-2 odds, returned $11.20 to win. He is the first foal out of the Kadabra mare Eagle Canada 2, 1:57.3s ($341,138) and was bred by the Dettore Farms of Ohio.

The fourth OHSS division was one of the most exciting races of the evening, as it took a photo finish to determine the winner in a nail-biting finish. The Scott Mogan-trained Icingon De Cupcake (9-5) was named the winner in his career debut, timed in 2:00.4 for driver Chris Page. Owned by Jeff Johnson of Newark, Ohio and Doug Millard of Woodstock, Ont., the son of Dejarmbro scored a neck decision over 18-1 Zeppelin BI (Anthony MacDonald), with 2-1 Mission Accepted (Ryan Stahl) grabbing third.

Icingon De Cupcake is the first foal out of the ML Cupcake, who was Ohio’s Two-Year-Old Trotting Filly of the Year in 2010 for these same connections. Owner Jeff Johnson, a marketing manager for AT&T, said he and his wife Shelley, a professional photographer, have been involved in the harness business as owners for the past 13 years.

“We’re so excited for this colt as this was his first start and his first win and he’s ‘Cupcake’s’ first foal,” explained Johnson. “This colt has some chips in his ankles earlier and we had those removed, gave him some time off, and he trained down super. He never missed a beat.”

Icingon De Cupcake’s dam, ML Cupcake, took a mark of 5, 1:56.f and earned $179,896. The daughter of Master Lavec is out of the Pine Chip mare CC Cupcake 2, Q2:04.2s, who, interestingly enough, is the dam of CC Bank, a colt who raced in the second OHSS division won by Lima Son.

Ronnie Wrenn Jr. gave Sultan Of Cash a perfect drive to win the fifth OHSS test in 1:59.3. The son of Cash Hall—Anything But Love—Conway Hall is owned and trained by Roger Hughes Jr. of Jamestown, Ohio and was a 3-1 choice on the board. He finished a length in front of the hard-trying Count On Cody (Dan Noble) with 6-5 favourite Mr Jubilant (Chris Page) close behind in third. Sultan Of Cash is the seventh foal out of his unraced dam and is a full brother to Catch The Dream, a winner of 34 races with a mark of 7, 1:52s and $545,240; My Future Ex 6, 1:55.4s ($100,990); and Moneydontbuyulove 3, 1:56.4f ($10,200).

Favourite (1-5) Get The Cash didn’t disappoint his backers as he trotted impressively for Dave Palone to a 1:57.3 clocking. The son of Cash Hall, who is trained by Kelly O’Donnell, easily bested 25-1 rival Win Chaser (Anthony MacDonald) and 8-1 Dontforgetmaster (Josh Sutton). It was the youngster’s second career victory in as many tries and upped his earnings to $24,750 for Mark Maynard of Fairview Park, Ohio, Joe Palatas of Hudson, Ohio, and K O Racing Stables of Sagamore Heights, Ohio. Get The Cash is the fifth and only foal to race out of the unraced Tom Ridge mare Chatterly Hall.

Ohio Sires Stakes return to Northfield Park on July 10, with three-year-old trotting colts slugging it out.

(With files from OSDF)

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