DUNDAS, ON — Freshman trotting colt Magic Hat will be looking to charm his new owners with a strong effort in the last regular season Grassroots event at Flamboro Downs on Friday evening.

Jim Carr of Hamilton, Steve Mihalic of Burlington and trainer Shane Arsenault of Waterdown purchased Magic Hat out of the Aug. 26 Summer Sizzler Sale, offering up $7,500 for the son of Kadabra and Stonebridge Dancer. In his first three Grassroots appearances the colt posted one win and one third, giving him a total of 62 points and a need for a top two effort on Friday to extend his season to the Sept. 21 Semifinals.

“I think he’s on the bubble,” says Arsenault. “So he has to do pretty good Friday to advance.”

Arsenault has sent the colt out twice since Aug. 24, the first in an Aug. 31 qualifier at Mohawk Racetrack where Magic Hat trotted around the seven-eighths mile oval in 2:04.2, and the second in a Sept. 5 overnight at Grand River Raceway which saw the trotter finish fourth with a 2:02 effort.

“He’s raced once, nothing spectacular, nothing terrible,” notes Arsenault.

“I think he’s shown us, and he probably showed the other people too, that he’s a Grassrooter. That’s probably why he was in the sale,” the trainer adds.

In addition to his three Grassroots starts, Magic Hat made two appearances in the Gold Series under the tutelage of former trainer Richard “Nifty” Norman, finishing fourth in a July 16 Gold Elimination at Mohawk and sixth in a July 30 elimination at Grand River.

Arsenault is hoping the colt matures into a solid racehorse, following the genetic path forged by his mother’s full siblings Stonebridge Diablo and Stonebridge Diva who earned $779,506 and $279,598, respectively.

“He’s small to medium sized, and a little immature looking,” says the horseman, who will prep Magic Hat for Friday’s Grassroots test with a training mile this week.

“Hopefully he’ll be fit and ready to take them on and made a good account of himself,” says Arsenault.

Scott Coulter will steer Magic Hat after a share of the $24,000 purse and a few extra Grassroots points from Post 2 in the seventh race on Friday. Among the horses the pair face is former Grassroots winner Krim Boughalem from Post 4 and several other colts sitting just below the current cut off for the top 16.

At the conclusion of Friday’s test the top 16 point earners from the six regular season events will turn their attention to the Sept. 21 Semifinals at Grand River Raceway. The top four finishers from each $30,000 Semifinal will return to Grand River on Sept. 29 for the two-year-old trotting colt Grassroots Championship.

The ninth race features a showdown between division point leaders North York and Kennel Buddy, who will start from Posts 8 and 6, respectively. Three other colts currently ranked in the top 16 will also battle in Race 9. Gotta Secret, who sits eighth, will start from Post 2, eleventh ranked Talking Story gets Post 5 and Beyond Sanity, in a three-way tie for thirteenth, will start from Post 7.

The two-year-old trotting colts will be featured in Races 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9 and 10 on Flamboro Downs’ Friday evening program, which gets under way at 6 pm.

To view Magic Hat’s previous Ontario Sires Stakes starts please go to Magic Hat

For complete entries please go to Flamboro Downs Entries — September 14, 2012