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Vanderkemp Talks Woodstock

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Published: August 26, 2009 2:27 pm ET

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When trainer Mike Vanderkemp first saw two-year-old Woodstock in Florida this past January, he was told the brown Rocknroll Hanover colt was one of trainer Noel Daley's top prospects. With a pair of very impressive pari-mutuel performances under its belt, there is no wonder the colt has been pegged as a top player for Mohawk Racetrack's $1.5 million Metro Pace.

A trio of $40,000 eliminations for the Metro will be part of a colossal night of stakes elims Saturday, August 29 at the Campbellville oval. Woodstock has drawn Post 7 in Race 9, the third of the Metro elims.

"I was down in Florida for a bit in January and that's the first time I saw him," Vanderkemp told Trot Insider. "Noel told me that he was one of the best he had. Obviously, he's a little bigger and rounder, but still the same horse -- he looks good.

"I'm not really surprised with what he has done so far."

To this point, the $100,000 yearling acquisition has tallied a pair of convincing victories down at the Meadowlands Racetrack -- the first was the off-the-pace type, while the second was of the gate-to-wire variety.

"He was a little green heading to the gate in his first start," Vanderkemp told Trot Insider of the August 6 contest. "[Driver Tim Tetrick] had to take him off [the gate] and then come from off it [the pace]."

Tetrick worked out an overland trip with plenty of cover, and the colt went on to draw away in the lane and post a two and a quarter-length victory in 1:53. Woodstock's next race was over an off track on August 21. The colt snatched the lead before the half and went on to record a one-length win in 1:52.4. Both of the colt's pari-mutuel lines feature final quarters in :26 and change.

Vanderkemp told Trot Insider that Woodstock shipped up to his care yesterday. "He looks good. He shipped well and Noel said that he came out of his last race in good shape."

In terms of the colt's schedule between now and Saturday, Vanderkemp said that he would train the colt a light and basically keep it healthy and happy.

To view the harness racing entries for the Saturday, August 29 card of racing at Mohawk Racetrack, click here.

To view a past performance program with the new TrackIT preliminary program format, click here.


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