Firethorn Pockets Trial 2

Published: August 14, 2011 05:03 pm EDT

Firethorn converted from the pocket to win the second $12,500 Sobey's Gold Cup & Saucer Trial over last year’s winner, Part Shark, on Sunday afternoon at Charlottetown Driving Park


Part Shark (Gilles Barrieau) took control of the field ahead of insider starter Firethorn and driver John MacDonald while favourite Southwind Lynx (Mike Stevenson) remained parked out in third to the opening quarter in :27.2.

Park Shark continued to show the way to the half in :55.2 with Southwind Lynx looming, but unable to make it up to the leader.

As the field headed down the backstretch to three-quarters in 1:24.1, Part Shark and pocket-sitter Firethorn took off on a two-horse breakaway.

MacDonald pulled the pocket as they entered the stretch and Firethorn unleashed a :27.1 final frame to wear down Part Shark for the one length victory in a career-best 1:51.3, just three-fifths of a second off Part Shark's all-age track record. Finishing 12 lengths behind was Did It Again (Marc Campbell), who rallied from the backfield to show.

“You definitely have to have a good post position here. If you draw the seven or eight-hole you are in big trouble. You can beat a lot of good horses with an inside position,” noted MacDonald in the winner’s circle. “I didn’t dream I’d ever get a two-hole trip. I haven’t raced on a half-mile track a lot so I didn’t want to rush into the first turn too much, but there just wasn’t a lot of speed besides Part Shark so it worked out perfect.

“I’m pumped! I was really disappointed last night, but I got the job done today so it should be a good week,” he added.

Firethorn paid $20.60 for the 9-1 upset. The five-year-old gelded son of Dragon Again-Drawing Card is trained by John and Ronald MacDonald for the J P Stables of Winchester, Ont. The Ontario invader notched his seventh win in 22 seasonal starts and watched his earnings climb to nearly $70,000. Lifetime, he now boasts 23 victories on his card and purse earnings of $228,029.

For results from Sunday's harness racing card, click on the following link: Sunday Results - Charlottetown Driving Park.



ron great job in getting firethorn ready&john another great drive VANESSA&BRETT keep up the good work JAN&PETE

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