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Freshmen Streak In Grand Circuit Stakes

Published: August 22, 2015 11:53 pm ET

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Rookie pacers Voracity, The Catamount Kid and Control The Moment scored Grand Circuit victories Saturday night at Mohawk Racetrack in the Nassagaweya Stakes.

A group of 21 two-year-old pacing colts and geldings were split into three $78,334 divisions of the Nassagaweya Stakes.

Voracity, a two-time Ontario Sires Stakes Gold Series winner, took his game to another level with a 1:51.2 victory in the opening division.

Driven by Randy Waples, Voracity, the 6-5 favourite, got away second heading into the first turn, as Heavymetal Hanover hung up an opening-quarter of :27.

In the second-quarter, Talk Show, the 3-2 second choice, came to the outside from fourth for driver Jack Moiseyev triggering Waples to pull the pocket and circle to the front. Talk Show cleared Voracity for the lead after a half of :56.1 and turned up the tempo taking the field down to three-quarters in 1:24.2.

In the stretch, Voracity came to the outside to set up a stretch duel between the top two choices. In the final-eighth, Voracity took the lead from a game Talk Show and prevailed by three-quarter of a length in a career-best 1:51.2. Heavymetal Hanover finished third, while Carter Beach was fourth.

A son of Sportswriter, Voracity is co-owned and trained by Tony Alagna. The rookie pacer started his career two for two, but suffered his first defeat by a nose in his last outing.

“He’s been really good here on the Woodbine circuit,” said Alagna, following the race. “We took him down to Rideau and he was second and I didn’t think he raced as well as he had been. It was the first time he had shipped that kind of distance and I think it dulled him a little bit. Tonight Randy did a great job, he read the race just the way it was going to play out and the colt responded.”

Brad Grant and John Fodera share ownership of Voracity with Alagna. The OSS star now has three wins from four starts and earnings of $152,917. Voracity was a $47,000 yearling purchase at last October’s Lexington Selected Sale.

The Alagna trainee paid $4.50 to win.

In the second division, Carl Jamieson trainee The Catamount Kid made a second-quarter move to the front and never looked back en route to a 1:52.1 victory.

A son of Well Said, The Catamount Kid and driver Jody Jamieson showed early speed to get situated in third, as Sossys King Kong posted an opening quarter of :27.3.

In the second quarter, Rodeo Rock and driver Waples circled to the front from second, but their lead was short-lived, as Jamieson sent The Catamount Kid to the front from third and reached the half in :56.4.

Ideal Rocky, the 7-5 favourite, came first up around the final turn and got to the wheel of The Catamount Kid, but that was as close as anyone would get to the leader. The Catamount Kid charged home comfortably in :27.1 to score a two-length victory over Sossys King Kong. Ideal Rocky had to settle for third, while Mindtrip was fourth.

The Catamount Kid is owned by Carl Jamieson, Thomas Kyron, George Harrison and Brian Paquet. The rookie was a $67,000 purchase at last year’s Lexington Selected Yearling Sale.

“He was one of our top horses all winter,” said Carl Jamieson, following the race. “He’s good gaited, easy to work with and he’s a really nice horse.”

The Catamount Kid now has two wins from four starts and a bankroll of $64,441. The clocking of 1:52.1 is a career-best for the Jamieson trainee.

The Catamount Kid paid $8.40 to win.

Control The Moment improved to a perfect five-for-five with a strong 1:51.4 victory in the final division.

A son of Well Said, Control The Moment and driver Waples took back at the start and got away in sixth. Manny cut the mile and posted opening fractions of :27.1 and :56.1.

Down the backstretch, Control The Moment picked up the cover of Inspiration View and the two colts marched their way towards the leader around the final turn, as Manny posted a three-quarter time of 1:25.

In the stretch, Control The Moment charged by his rivals with effortless strides and cruised home in :26.2 for the victory. American Passport finished up with a strong late-kick to finish second by a length, while Racing Hill and Manny were third and fourth, respectively.

Control The Moment is trained by Brad Maxwell, who shares ownership of the colt with Howard Taylor, Edwin Gold and Ben Mudry. The rookie pacer was purchased for $47,000 at last year’s Lexington Selected Yearling Sale.

The driving victory for Waples was his third stakes victory on the card.

Control The Moment increased his bankroll to $78,187 with the victory Saturday and also lowered his career-mark by two-fifths of a second.

The Maxwell trainee paid $2.80 to win.

All three Nassagaweya division winners are eligible to the eliminations of the Metro Pace next Saturday.

Two-year-old pacing fillies were also in action Saturday in two divisions of the Eternal Camnation Stakes.

In the $110,361 first division, Thatsoveryverynice continued the strong evening for the Alagna stable with a 1:51.4 victory.

Driven by Jody Jamieson, Thatsoveryverynice, the even-money favourite, got away fifth heading into the first turn and sat in that position until nearing the half. Blue Moon Stride, the New Jersey Sires Stakes champion, made a second-quarter brush to the lead, but was quickly confronted by Twin B Thong.

Thatsoveryverynice was left first up around the final turn, as Twin B Thong took the field by the third-quarter in 1:23.4.

In the stretch, Thatsoveryverynice powered by Twin B Thong to take the lead. Blue Moon Stride couldn’t find room up the rail and swung to the far outside to make a late bid, but came up a length short of Thatsoveryverynice. Twin B Thong held on for third, while Three Dreams was fourth.

An Alagna trainee, Thatsoveryverynice set an OSS record of 1:51.2 in her career debut and has two Gold victories on her resume. The daughter of Vintage Master suffered her first loss last week at Georgian.

“She’s done nothing wrong all along,” said Jamieson, following the race. “Last week was more my fault, just kind of fighting her at the gate. Tonight she was a different horse. Tony brought her in right where she was perfect and went up to the gate and did all the work.”

Thatsoveryverynice is owned by Alagna Racing LLC and Marvin Katz. She now has a record of three wins from four starts and earnings of $125,315.

Thatsoveryverynice returned $4.30 to win.

L A Delight extended her win streak to six in a row with a 1:51.4 victory in the $112,130 second division.

Sent off as the 3-5 favourite, L A Delight floated off the gate to get away in sixth, while Darlinonthebeach sprinted to the opening quarter in :26.1.

Darlinonthebeach was unchallenged in the second quarter and took the field by the half in :55.1. Shes Lights Out came out from third to challenge first up around the final turn, while L A Delight was making up ground on the outside and tipped three-wide at the three-quarter pole.

In the stretch, L A Delight roared by her rivals and pulled away with every stride under a hand drive from Waples to win by four and three-quarter lengths. Show Time Hill came through to finish second, while Darlinonthebeach and Keystone Paula were third and fourth, respectively.

L A Delight now has six wins in a row and had been doing most of the work on the front end, but Waples decided to change things up Saturday.

“There was a couple of them that were really hot behind the gate and it just seemed to me that if I went with them we were going to see some really serious fractions and I was going to be in a position I didn’t want to be,” said Waples. “I was able to stay out of the real speed stuff at the start and it just worked out.”

L A Delight is co-owned and trained by Bob McIntosh. The daughter of Bettors Delight has been undefeated since dropping her career debut and already has two OSS Gold victories to her name.

“As bad as it sounds, you kind of expect it out of Bob’s barn because he gives you so many nice horses to drive,” said Waples. “She’s extremely fast and she’s perfect gaited, but I guess the biggest thing is she has a real winning attitude.”

C S X Stables and Al McIntosh are also part of the filly’s ownership group. L A Delight now has six wins from seven starts and earnings of $161,145. The clocking of 1:51.4 established a new career-best.

A $2 win ticket on L A Delight returned $3.30.

Thatsoveryverynice and L A Delight are both eligible to next Saturday’s Shes A Great Lady eliminations.

The draw for the eliminations of both the Metro Pace and Shes A Great Lady Stakes will take place this Tuesday.

This week's $34,000 Preferred Pace was won by Duc Dorleans, who went wire-to-wire in a new lifetime mark of 1:48.4 with Phil Hudon driving for trainer Jacques Dupont. The five-year-old Shanghai Phil gelding is owned by Gestion C. Levesque 2005 Inc. and Les Ecuries Dorleans Inc.

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

(With files from WEG)


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