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Freshman Fillies Lower Century Record

Published: September 12, 2015 9:04 pm ET

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Two-year-old pacing fillies invaded Century Downs Racetrack and Casino for the Alberta Starburst on Saturday afternoon and set a new divisional track record.

Two of the three winners in the second leg of the Alberta Sires Stakes turned in record performances. The three divisions carried purses ranging from $18,767 to $19,067.

Divas Dragonfly lowered Jet Blue Burner's divisional track record by two-fifths of a second to 1:58 in the first split, but Jet Blue Burner went right back out to equal the new mark in the final event and keep her name in the record books.

Divas Dragonfly and driver Jamie Gray trailed the first six-horse field through fractions of :28.3, 1:00 and 1:28.3 as Witch Doctor (Rod Hennessy) overtook Outlawtriggerhappy (Bill Tainsh Jr.) after being parked to the quarter from the outside post and then Glamorgal (Gerry Hudon) went by down the backstretch. Gray had Divas Dragonfly in the outer flow and fanned the favoured Mystery Chase filly three-wide from the back of the pack turning for home. Divas Dragonfly sprinted by the field in a :28.1 final quarter to keep her Sires Stakes record perfect through the first two legs. Joyful Sound (Jim Marino) came on for second and Glamorgal finished third.

Divas Dragonfly now boasts four stakes victories and has yet to miss the board in seven career starts for trainer Carl Archibald and owner/breeder Meadowlark Farms of Airdrie, Alberta. She now boasts a career bankroll of $35,429.

Gray also steered favourite Cenalta Artistry to victory lane in the middle division for trainer Allan Goertzen.

The daughter of Allamerican Merlin was fifth through an opening quarter of :30 while Cuttingtothechase (Jim Marino) swept past Four Feathers (Nathan Sobey) to take the lead. Cuttingtothechase continued to front the field to the half in 1:00.2 and three-quarters in 1:29.3 while battling with first over Clintons Memory (Tyler Redwood). Astrid The Axe (Gerry Hudon) went three-wide from second over and then Gray fanned favourite Cenalta Artistry out for the stretch drive after avoiding breaker Four Feathers, who had interfered with Blue Fancy (Ryan Grundy). Cenalta Artistry kicked home for her first stakes victory in 2:01, scoring by one length over the late-closing Apple Blossom Time (Philip Giesbrecht). Astrid The Axe was third.

Cenalta Artistry was bred by Bowden, Alberta's Gordon and Helen Empey, and is co-owned by Myrna Empey of Calgary. The win was her second in seven career starts and bumped her bankroll to $18,673.

In the track record equalling third division, 79-1 longshot Top It Up (Preston Shaw) fronted the eight-filly field through panels of :29.1, 1:00.3 and 1:29.3 while Funkmeister (Bill Tainsh Jr.) challenged first over. Meanwhile, Jet Blue Burner and trainer/driver Travis Cullen followed the live cover after getting away fifth and rallied three-wide into the final turn. Jet Blue Burner out-sprinted Funkmeister, kicking home in :28.1, to defeat that foe by one length in 1:58. Monstrous (Jim Marino) closed from third over to show.

Jet Blue Burner was a $5,000 ASHA Yearling Sale purchase and is owned by Cullen, his mother Jodie, and partners Keith Hannah of Waskada, Manitoba and Dwayne Taylor of Minto, Manitoba. The Blue Burner filly was making her first start in the Alberta Sires Stakes, but also boasts a victory in the ASHA Filly Stakes for a two-for-three career record and earnings of $13,749.

The Cullen stable's popular mare Sing Like An Angel also won the $12,500 Fillies & Mares Handicap Open Pace, leading through fractions of :27.4, :57.3 and 1:25.4 en route to a 1:54.1 triumph. Rummys Command (Keith Clark) followed over two lengths behind off a pocket trip and Nighttraintovegas (Brandon Campbell) (Jim Marino) finished third. The Bettors Delight mare is now 11-for-19 in her five-year-old campaign and was rebounding from her only off-the-board finish in her last start two weeks ago that was a result of a judges placing.

The two-year-old pacing fillies will meet again in the Alberta Stardust, the third and final preliminary leg of the Alberta Sires Stakes, on Monday, October 12.

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


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