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Cheque The Magic Leads Massive Upset

Published: August 30, 2020 11:40 pm ET

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Pylon-starter Cheque The Magic won narrowly in the $9,200 Preferred Handicap Trot at large odds over two other long-odd competitors on Sunday (Aug. 30) at Rideau Carleton Raceway.

Uncontested through early fractions of :28 and :58.1, Cheque The Magic led pocket-sitter LMC Mass Gem while enduring mild first-over pressure from Hat Trick Marleau to three-quarters in 1:27.3. Cheque The Magic continued to hold a one-length lead into the stretch that gradually diminished as LMC Mass Gem rallied inside and Hat Trick Marleau outside, but the eight-year-old Kadabra gelding clung to victory in the photo. LMC Mass Gem finished a nose behind in second at 31-1 with Hat Trick Marleau finishing third at 15-1 by a neck.

Returning $56.30 to win, Cheque The Magic won his fourth race from 18 starts this season and his 30th from 229 overall, earning $195,947. Ted McDonald trains and drives the winner for owners Julie Ferguson and Lloyd Stone. With the other long shots on the board, the exactor returned $647.90 for $2 while the triactor paid $1,924.75.

National Debt delivered as the odds-on favourite in the $9,200 Preferred Handicap Pace with a 1:51.2 mile.

Driver Pascal Berube floated National Debt into fifth while Take The Deal sped to a :26.1 first quarter parking Vanilla Malted moving past the stands first time. Take The Deal continued to speed to a :54.3 half as Berube edged National Debt off the pylons, progressing towards the top heading to three-quarters in 1:22.3. National Debt continued to gain into the final turn and eventually slid past Take The Deal into the stretch, striding to a one-length win over St Lads Cash spurting from the pocket for second. Vegas Rocks closed for third.

A nine-year-old stallion by Allamerican Native, National Debt won his sixth race from 16 starts this season and 60 from 184 overall, earning $567,515. Yves Tessier trains the $3.20 winner for owner Francois Morin.

Gagnon again swept the three $7,500 divisions of the Hard Rock Summer Claiming Series, giving him three of his five driving wins and two of his three training wins.

Kahlua Morning ($3.70) wired his competition in the first division as the 4-5 favourite. The Mandy Archer trainee protected position from the inside post to a :27.2 first quarter and parked first-over challenger Mohegan Blue Chip through middle fractions of :57.1 and 1:26. From there the five-year-old Westwardho Hanover mare widened her lead, winning by four-and-a-half lengths in 1:54.4 over Bet Till Dawn. Pocket-sitter No Panic finished third.

Gagnon trainee Dutch Seelster ($2.20) led for most of the mile to win the second division in 1:53.3. The nine-year-old Artiscape stallion circled to the lead after sitting pocket to a :27.3 first quarter, and strolled through middle splits of :56.1 and 1:25 in progress to a one-and-three-quarter length win over pocket-sitter Carwins Smore. Santanna Tony finished third.

Chaleurs Ad ($2.10). won by the widest margin in the slowest time, strolling to a five-length win in 1:54.1 as the 1-9 favourite. Gagnon grabbed the lead with the eight-year-old Riggins gelding to a :27.1 first quarter and clipped middle times of :57 and 1:25.2 in progress to an open-length score over Genesee closing for second. Jackson K Down finished third.

Gagnon visited the winner’s circle on two more occasions. He steered his pupil Luke And Duke ($2.60) to a 1:54.2 victory in a $6,500 claiming pace and then landed Mandy Archer trainee and even-money favourite Osiris Blue Chip ($4.00) to a head victory in a $6,900 conditioned pace.

To view Sunday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Sunday Results - Rideau Carleton Raceway.

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