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Art Official Cruises In Cane Pace

Published: September 1, 2008 4:20 pm ET

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Art Official extended his win streak to five-in-a-row with a thoroughly convincing victory in the $392,850 Cane Pace earlier this afternoon at Freehold Raceway.

Handled by Ron Pierce, the World Record-setting son of Art Major, fresh off the fastest mile ever paced in Freehold Raceway's history, parked past the quarter pole in :26.3 before touching down on the lead and turning aside seven foes to take the first jewel of the Triple Crown for pacers.

Pierce hammered out remaining fractions of :55 and 1:23.4 with Badlands Nitro (Brian Sears) glued to his helmet. At the top of the lane, Art Official had more than enough in the tank to hold off that rival and everyone else in a time of 1:51.1 – which was a mere two-fifth's of a second off last week's elimination clocking of 1:50.4.

Badlands Nitro held for the runner-up award and third prize went to Moon Beam (Yannick Gingras). The final cheques went to Mccedes (Dan Dube) and Rudy Rednose (David Miller), who finished fourth and fifth, respectively.

Art Official – Cane Pace

"He's got a great trainer behind him," said driver Ron Pierce, referring to Art Official's trainer Joe Seekman. "He's done a great job with this horse and all of his other horses. He's in the right barn and it should be interesting the rest of the year."

The colt, who is owned by Sawgrass Farms LLC of Lockport, IL, bumped his lifetime earnings to $1,327,112 with the victory. After going winless in 15 starts last season, Art Official has followed up with a 10-for-16 sophomore campaign for trainer Joe Seekman.

"The horse got very sharp and we thought we'd take a shot at this race," said Seekman. "He got around this track real well, we were a little concerned last week because it was his first start over the track. He trains over a half-mile track at home."

The connections of the colt confirmed that a trip to the Delaware Country Fairgrounds for the Little Brown Jug is the next stop on the colt's agenda.

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