Sire Stakes Finals Sunday At Red Mile

Published: September 12, 2018 04:56 pm EDT

The best of harness racing in the Bluegrass will be on display this coming Sunday afternoon (Sept. 16) at the Red Mile when the historic Lexington racetrack will host the $2 million Kentucky Sire Stakes (KYSS) finals.

The 10-race card will get underway at 3 p.m. (EDT) and is the centrepiece of the new Fayette County Fair that will run from noon until 6 p.m.

Sunday afternoon’s 10-race race card will feature the eight divisional KYSS championship races, worth $250,000 apiece, as well as a pair of $50,000 consolation events. The fields were set after three preliminary legs were contested over the past three weeks at the Red Mile.

The opening quartet of KYSS finals are for the two-year-olds. The first-year male trotters will kick off the championships (Race 3) and the field of 10 will include four preliminary winners, including two-time victors Forecast (a son of Cantab Hall, who will start from Post 1) and Super Schissel (Uncle Peter, Post 4). Also in the race are prelim winners Lindys Crazy Hall (Cantab Hall, Post 7) and Dont Letem (Muscle Hill, Post 3), who earlier this year won the Peter Haughton Memorial at the Meadowlands Racetrack. Among the two-year-old filly trotters (Race 5), Taylor Swiftly (Trixton, Post 5) has created nothing but bad blood between her and her rivals by being mean and sweeping all three preliminaries.

The two-year-old filly pacer Beautyonthebeach swept her three opening rounds, and the daughter of Somebeachsomewhere may be tough to beat in that divisional final (Race 4) as she has landed Post 1. The road to divisional honours among the freshman male pacers (Race 6) appears to go through Captain Trevor, a son of Captaintreacherous who has been most impressive while capturing all three of his prelims.

Only two three-year-olds who won KYSS finals last year at two are back to defend their title. One of those is the filly trotter Top Expectations, who was two-for-two in this year’s opening two legs. The daughter of Cantab Hall drew Post 1 for this year’s final (Race 7). The three-year-old filly pacer Band Stand is the other returning champion, but this year the daughter of A Rocknroll Dance may have her work cut out for her as she finished eighth in the point standings after a second, sixth and fourth in the prelims. Band Stand will start from Post 4 in this year’s final (Race 8). The role of favourite will likely go to Dance Blue (Post 3), a daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven who won both her opening rounds in open-length fashion.

Race 9 is the $250,000 KYSS final for three-year-old male trotters. Tactical Landing, a son of Muscle Hill who last month captured his Hambletonian elimination and finished third in the $1 million final, will start from Post 1 after a third and first in the KYSS preliminaries. Wolfgang – a son of My MVP and a leg-one winner who is Tactical Landing’s stablemate in the barn of trainer Jimmy Takter – will start from Post 4. Classichap, a son of Chapter Seven who raced and won his only KYSS appearance in Leg 3 last Monday night, will start from Post 3.

The sophomore male pacers will close out the championship card in Race 10. American History (post 6), a son of American Ideal, is two-for-two in this year’s KYSS and is one of three Tony Alagna trainees that will be heading postward (Rush To Judgement, Post 1) and Legal Power (Post 4). Grand Teton (Post 3), a son of A Rocknroll Dance who won the first KYSS leg, is one of three Takter trainees in the race, along with Thinkbig Dreambig (Post 5) and Decoy (Post 8).

The eight KYSS finals will encompass an ‘all-stakes’ 20-cent Pick 8 wager that will feature a guaranteed $10,000 pool in conjunction with the U.S. Trotting Association’s Strategic Wagering Program. The Pick 8 has a low takeout rate of only 15 per cent. The wager will feature a mandatory payout, so the entire net pool will be paid for the most winners if nobody selects all eight winners.

Admission is free and the Fayette County fair will include food trucks, local craft breweries, bourbon tastings and an arts and crafts market.

Several musical acts will play on two stages (one inside and one outside), with rising country star and Lexington native Walker Montgomery, Avery Crabtree and Conch Republic among the performers. Montgomery is slated to perform on the outdoor stage from 4-6 p.m. The racing program will get underway with a horse parade of various breeds and the Harness Horse Youth Foundation will offer hands-on equine experience.

Saturday night’s (post time 7 p.m.) 10-race card will feature three $50,000 KYSS consolations, including races for three-year-old filly trotters, two-year-old colt trotters and two-year-old filly pacers.

(Kentucky Sire Stakes)