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Ontario Standouts Finally Face Off

Published: August 21, 2020 11:50 am ET

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Ontario Sires Stakes standouts Beaumond Hanover and Tattoo Artist have been able to avoid each other thus far this year, but that’ll change on Saturday night at Woodbine Mohawk Park when the pair of sophomore pacers will line up behind the gate together in the first of two $50,000 eliminations of this year’s $1 million Pepsi North America Cup.

While Beaumond Hanover comes into the elim riding a four-race win streak, Tattoo Seelster is on a five-race win skein. And while three of those wins for each came in OSS action, the pair drew into separate divisions. Beaumond Hanover is trained by Jack Darling, while Tattoo Artist is conditioned by Dr. Ian Moore. The two trainers are both based at Classy Lane Training Centre in Ontario and, ironically, the two standout pacers are virtually side-by-side.

“He’s actually a little guy,” laughed Dr. Moore when asked how ‘The Big Guy’ in his stable is doing heading into the North America Cup elims. “He’s not a big horse; he’s quite small in stature. Compared to Beaumond Hanover. And those two horses are stabled about 20 feet apart.”

Beaumond Hanover will start from Post 1 with driver Jody Jamieson, and Tattoo Artist will line up a little more than 20 feet away in Post 7 with driver Bob McClure. Dr. Moore will also send out Denali Seelster from Post 5 with driver Trevor Henry in the second North America Cup elim.

As for Tattoo Artist, the reigning Ontario Sires Stakes champion completed his freshman season with five wins in eight starts. Dr. Moore said Tattoo Artist’s disposition has completely turned around since he first hit the track in 2019.

“He was very difficult as a two-year-old, to put it mildly,” Moore said about the son of Hes Watching owned by Frank Cannon and Let It Ride Stables. “But as time went on he got to be better and better and was a pretty nice horse at the end of the year. This year he’s just a sweetheart. When he’s on the racetrack he’s all business.”

Among Tattoo Artist’s five wins this year is a career-best 1:48.2 effort in an OSS Gold split on July 4 at Mohawk. Tattoo Artist then got a three-week break before winning an OSS Gold in 1:49.1 on July 25 at Mohawk, and then it was another three weeks before he raced and won an OSS Gold at Rideau Carleton last Sunday (Aug. 16) in 1:50.4 over a “good” racetrack.

“The schedule maker up here should be shot, quite frankly,” said Dr. Moore. “There was no reason for it. The only reason I can see is that they were waiting to see what would happen at the border with the U.S. horses.

“I really didn’t want to truck him 10-11 hours to Rideau six days before the North America Cup but we couldn’t get a start (at Mohawk).”

With the gaps between races, Dr. Moore said he had to alter his training regimen,
and it paid off in his Rideau Carleton effort.

“I trained him a lot harder this time around,” he said. “The first time around he almost got beat in the second to last race (at Mohawk Park). I think good horses need to be trained harder and trained to very close to where they are going to go race. If you don’t do that, then they are not going to be as good when it comes to race time.

“He raced very well last Saturday. Those were two monster miles (Beaumond Hanover also won his OSS division in 1:50.2) on the track that had got all chewed up on the inside because it rained heavily.”

As for Denali Seelster, the son of Sunshine Beach has two wins in eight starts this year, including a career-best 1:50 effort in an Aug. 1 overnight at Mohawk.

“He’s gone in 1:50 flat three times,” noted Dr. Moore. “The last time he did it (in his win) was quite impressive. He was parked to the quarter in :26 flat and came home in :26.3. He’s been very sharp lately.”

Dr. Moore admits he’s taking a gamble with Denali Seelster, but it’s a risk owner Dave Ratchford was willing to take.

“Denali Seelster is a nice little colt but I don’t think he’s the caliber to race against some of these guys. But something could happen in a week, I guess

“Dave Ratchford asked me if I would race him in there, I said no. But he called me (Tuesday) at 9:30 in the morning (an hour before the entry box closed) and said his three girls told him to spend some money so he spent $8,000 to enter him.”

Neither Tattoo Artist nor Denali Seelster is eligible to the Little Brown Jug, a race Dr. Moore won in 2008 with Shadow Play and one he considers his favourite. A
North America Cup win would allow both colts to be supplemented to the Jug, which will be raced on Sept. 24 at Delaware, Ohio.

“I love the Jug. I think it’s the best race,” he said. “I go every opportunity I
can go.

The winners of Saturday’s eliminations will earn their connections the opportunity to select their post position for the final. The $1 million Pepsi North America Cup final is scheduled for Saturday, August 29.

Elimination 1 (Race 6 - 9:05 p.m.)
(Post - Horse - Driver)
1 - Beaumond Hanover - Jody Jamieson
2 - Warrawee Vital - Trevor Henry
3 - Tall Dark Stranger - Yannick Gingras
4 - Capt Midnight - Doug McNair
5 - Odds On Osiris - Sylvain Filion
6 - Beach Blanket Book - James MacDonald
7 - Tattoo Artist - Bob McClure
8 - Captain Barbossa - Louis-Philippe Roy

Elimination 2 (Race 8 - 9:55 p.m.)
(Post - Horse - Listed Driver)
1 - Captain Kirk - Bob McClure
2 - Velocity Rukkus - Randy Waples
3 - Moneyman Hill - Jonathan Drury
4 - Aneto - Chris Christoforou
5 - Denali Seelster - Trevor Henry
6 - Mayhem Hanover - Doug McNair
7 - Allywag Hanover - Louis-Philippe Roy

To view the entries for Saturday's North America Cup elimination card of harness racing at Woodbine Mohawk Park, click the following link: Saturday Entries - Woodbine Mohawk Park.

(Harness Racing Weekend Preview)

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