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Successful Shift For Jacques Lambert

Published: July 22, 2021 11:01 am ET

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For the last decade, Jacques Lambert has campaigned horses on the Manitoba harness racing circuit but has decided to pick up shop, test the waters and make a name for himself in Alberta.

The mid-June departure from Manitoba came rather suddenly but to no real surprise as the opportunities in Alberta are greater than that in Manitoba. The possible exposure could help advance Lambert’s training career not only out west but potentially to bigger ventures in Ontario.

“I’ve been thinking about this move for quite some time. I was going to be in between jobs with my work. We already had the stake horses, so I thought why not try this out and head west.”

The timing was perfect to make the move and he has had no regrets so far. Before the decision to move operations to Alberta, Lambert had spent his whole career in Manitoba. On the Manitoba Circuit he had made 185 starts and won 32 times as a trainer. Lambert’s first win as a trainer came in 2007 in Portage La Prairie.

“Manitoba was the foundation. I spent 10 years in Manitoba by myself, but I have been a part of it there since I was a kid. There’s a lot of great horsemen out there and I learned a lot from those guys.”

His best season as a trainer in Manitoba was in 2019 where he made 26 starts and won seven times including the 2019 Juvenile Stakes with Evermor Legacy. Lambert also posted solid numbers on the driving side last season, with his most recent action at Miami Fair resulting in a stakes victory aboard Verns Wish in the Golden Boy Final.

Lambert admitted that his real passion comes from the training side. “I like to train a horse more than just driving. My most enjoyable and proud moments were training horses. Driving Verns Wish for a win was nice but it’s not the same as bringing up a yearling, breaking it, qualifying it, and then winning with it. Prime example would be Follow Your Nose.” That daughter of Toucam Sam, bred and developed by Lambert, won the 2020 Futurity Final and was named 2020 Top Manitoba Bred of The Year under trainer Trevor Williams.

Currently Lambert has several horses in his racing stable and they are starting to have success in Alberta. Lambert has made 2021 his best year in earnings with more than $18,000 in winnings so far. On July 13 at Century Downs, his stable had six starters with two winners and five finishing in the money to take home $4,415 for his day’s work. Two of his top horses right now are Munchie Chris (Toucam Sam - Dawns Early Rise) and Two To Ten (Mystery Chase - Shoplifter Hanover).

A Lambert-trained horse will make a return to Manitoba this upcoming weekend in the Futurity Eliminations for three-year-olds and this stakes event has the largest purse of any Manitoba stake race. Under Lambert’s training, Chase My Dust (Mystery Chase - Crush On Clinton) has finished in the top five in his last four starts at Century Downs. The winless colt will now return home to race against other three-year-olds in Manitoba. Chase My Dust will be sent out by trainer Richard Rey on Saturday, with Michel Rey at the controls from post three in the first $5,345 elimination.

Lambert will continue his season at Century Downs. He’s heavily invested into his transition west to Alberta, but he recognizes he could not have done it on his own. “Ralph Morrow and Rick Scott were a big part of this move. This was also a family decision. My family is a huge part of this stable and I couldn’t do it without them. [wife] Julie, [children] Jasmine and Jaden help me so much.”

To view the entries for Saturday's card of harness racing at Miami, click the following link: Saturday Entries - Miami.

(A Trot Insider Exclusive by Trey Colbeck)

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