Tattoo Artist Takes The Canadian Pacing Derby

Tattoo Artist
Published: September 3, 2023 12:55 am EDT

Tattoo Artist flipped the script to win the 2023 $615,000 Canadian Pacing Derby on Saturday, Sept. 2 at Woodbine Mohawk Park. 

A runner-up last year to Bulldog Hanover, Tattoo Artist finally got his moment in the Pacing Derby spotlight with a thrilling 1:47.4 victory over heavy favourite Bythemissal. 

During the opening stages of the race, the expected trio of Allywag Hanover, Linedrive Hanover and Bythemissal all showed speed. Linedrive Hanover (James MacDonald) reached the first quarter in :26.4, while Allywag Hanover (Todd McCarthy) sat outside set to clear as they entered the backstretch. Bythemissal (Yannick Gingras) moved out from third entering the backstretch to go after the lead, getting stretched by ‘Allywag’ to a :53.3 half. 

With the early shuffle happening up front, Tattoo Artist and driver Louis-Philippe Roy sat back in seventh until angling out at the half. 

Halfway around the final turn, Linedrive Hanover pulled out from third to push towards the leader, which provided cover to an advancing Tattoo Artist. Bythemissal reached the three-quarter pole in 1:21. 

In the stretch, Bythemissal was able to turn away Linedrive Hanover and had Allywag Hanover blocked behind with no racing room. However, Tattoo Artist was unleashed and charged up after the heavy favourite, overtaking in deep stretch to win by a neck. 

“I knew that there was going to be a lot of action,” said Roy. “I knew that if I wanted to race him close, I would have to use him more. I didn’t see how I could get a good trip leaving hard, but then I’ll be honest with you, at the half… I knew I wasn’t going to get good cover from there.  

“I was hoping leaving the gate maybe [Bythemissal] will have to come a little bit later and I’ll catch his cover but then I saw him move pretty early on at the turn and my only hope then was that the horse would have to be so good, and I’m just happy I’m here.” 

Allywag Hanover finished third, while Lous Pearlman (David Miller) was fourth and Linedrive Hanover was fifth. 

Doubling up from an explosive victory in his eliminations, Tattoo Artist is now four-for-16 this season and picks up his 35th career victory and largest payday to date. The six-year-old son of Hes Watching now has more than $2.8 million earned for owners Let It Ride Stables, Frank Cannon, Diamond Creek Racing and Bottom Line Racing. 

The ‘Pacing Derby’ victory came in Tattoo Artist’s third crack at the prestigious race. He had previously finished second in 2022 and sixth in 2021. The victory is the first for driver Roy in the event and second for trainer Dr. Moore (State Treasurer, 2015). 

“Well, this is the second time around for us and it’s just as exciting this time as it was the first time with State Treasurer,” said Dr. Moore. “Any horse in that race could’ve stepped up and won it and I’m just glad it was us. I was kind of concerned leaving that we didn’t get away that well and then he came first up I was getting even more concerned, but he caught the late cover…I think that really helped and I knew we were close enough at the head of the stretch that he was going to get around and get it done” 

Roy extended his praise for the ability and heart of Tattoo Artist. 

Tattoo Artist

“I just love him. Once you sit behind him, you love him. He’s a great animal, he wants to do it, he’s just waiting on you to ask him to.”  

A $2 win ticket on Tattoo Artist returned $15.30. 

To view the results from the Saturday card of harness racing in Campbellville, click the following link: Saturday Results - Woodbine Mohawk Park.


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