GLOUCESTER, ON — Rideau Carleton Raceway fans were treated to an outstanding performance from the province’s top two-year-old trotting colts on Sunday evening, as the youngsters blazed around the Ottawa oval to a nail-biting Gold Final finish.

Serving early notice that fans were in for an exceptional show, three colts engaged in an early duel for the front end. Reach Higher tried to preserve his position on the rail, but Magic Fruit pressed hard from the outside to reach the opening quarter in :28.3. Hot on Magic Fruit’s heels from the start, Zorgwijk Kingpin powered up the outside to claim the lead before the :58.4 half.

As the field flashed by the three-quarters in 1:28.1 , Zorgwijk Kingpin was still controlling the pace, but the elimination winner was under heavy pressure from Text Me. As the colts straightened out for home, former Gold Final winner Text Me had a short lead, but the race was far from over.

Text Me, Zorgwijk Kingpin and pocket sitter Magic Fruit pounded down the stretch, and at the wire it was Magic Fruit who got a head in front to score the 1:57 victory. Text Me settled for second, with fan favourite Zorgwijk Kingpin in third.

Trainer Per Henriksen engineered the Gold Final victory for Magic Fruit, who is owned by Ernst Gerbaulet of Recklinghausen, GER. An elimination winner at Rideau Carleton last weekend, Magic Fruit boosted his record to two wins, one second and three thirds through 10 starts, for earnings of $165,063.

Henriksen has been pleased with the colt’s progress in recent weeks, and hopes he will build on his success as the two-year-old trotting colts wrap up their regular Gold Series season at Woodbine Racetrack on Oct. 30 and Nov. 6. With 142 points earned through the first four events, Magic Fruit currently sits tied for fifth in the division standings, and will advance to the $300,000 Super Final at Woodbine on Nov. 14.

The talented young trotter is also eligible to the Breeders Crown at Woodbine in October and the Matron Stakes at Dover Downs in November.

Rideau Carleton Raceway now takes a breather and prepares to host the 2009 Grassroots Championships. The top two-year-old trotters and pacers from the Grassroots program will converge on the Ottawa oval Oct. 23 for their Semifinals, with the three-year-olds arriving Oct. 25. Once each division’s field has been whittled down to eight, Rideau Carleton will roll out the red carpet for the $800,000 Grassroots Championship event on Nov. 1.

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