TORONTO, OCT. 15, 2011 — The third straight night of Gold Final action at Woodbine Racetrack delivered some unexpected results, as the favourites in both $170,000 contests had to settle for less than the lion’s share.
Opening Saturday’s showdown were the three-year-old pacing colts, and Woodbine fans sent reigning champ Prodigal Seelster off as their top choice from Post 8. Driver Scott Zeron — looking for his fourth Gold Final win in three days — had Prodigal Seelster in high gear as the gate pulled away, but Doug McNair and Jody Jamieson had the same idea with Camaes Fellow and Mystician and the colts marched three abreast into the first turn.
McNair opted out of the early battle, but Mystician and Prodigal Seelster locked horns through the :27.1 opener and well into the second quarter. Prodigal Seelster was finally able to reach the front by the :55.1 half, and continued to lead the field of eight at the 1:23.1 three-quarters, but Mystician was breathing down Zeron’s neck as the pair turned for home.
While Jamieson looked for a path up the inside, McNair found racing room for Camaes Fellow between horses on the outside and started to reel in the leaders. Both Mystician and Camaes Fellow closed hard, but it was Camaes Fellow who scored his first ever Gold Series victory in 1:53.
Mystician earned second-place honours, with Prodigal Seelster two and three-quarter lengths back in third, ahead of his stablemate Watermelonwine and fifth-place finisher Machal Jackson.
Tony O’Sullivan trains Camaes Fellow for Frank Bellino of Bronxville, NY, and has sent the son of Mach Three and Camae behind the gate 18 times this season. Camaes Fellow has four wins, five seconds and four thirds to his credit and bumped his sophomore earnings to $233,058 with the win.
A Grassroots winner at two, Camaes Fellow made his Gold Series debut in the elimination at Kawartha Downs on Aug. 25, where he finished second to Prodigal Seelster. Sixth in the final at Kawartha one week later, he then finished fourth in the Sept. 28 Gold Final at Grand River Raceway, and moved up the division point standings into fourth spot with Saturday’s victory.
Next out of the tunnel at Woodbine were the three-year-old trotting colts and with Canadian Trotting Classic winner Daylon Magician in the field, officials opted not to permit show wagering. The colt and regular reinsman Jack Moiseyev were sent off as the heavy favourites from Post 4 and settled into fifth on the rail early as Imperial Count roared out to a :13.2 eighth and a :28 quarter.
Imperial Count, pursued by Incredable Frank, continued to lead the field of nine through the :57.1 half, but his lead was being narrowed rapidly by Delcrest Julian, who was sitting on the pacesetter’s flank by the 1:25.2 three-quarters. Daylon Magician started up the outside in pursuit of Delcrest Julian, but was pushed out three-wide and could not seem to make any forward progress.
By the 1:40 seven-eighths Delcrest Julian had a short lead and the Oaklea Julian son and driver Paul MacDonell were able to stretch that out to two and a half lengths by the time they trotted under the wire in 1:55.1. Daylon Magician made it up for second, with Sim Brown, Imperial Count and Traverse Seelster completing the cheque earners.
MacDonell subbed in the race bike for the injured Rick Zeron, who conditions Delcrest Julian for Terry Hunter of Cambridge. Through 15 starts this season the improving Delcrest Julian has recorded four wins, three seconds and three thirds for earnings of $228,397. The colt wrapped up the regular season in third spot behind Daylon Magician and Imperial Count.
The top 10 point earners in all eight Ontario Sires Stakes divisions will return to Woodbine Racetrack on Saturday, Nov. 12 to compete in their respective $300,000 Super Finals and wrap up an outstanding 2011 season.
For complete results please go to: Woodbine Racetrack Results — Oct. 15, 2011