CAMPBELLVILLE, ON — Ontario-breds dominated the Canadian Breeders Championships from start to finish as all eight divisions went to Ontario Sires Stakes stars at Mohawk Racetrack on Saturday evening (Nov. 30).
Only one youngster bred outside of the province made an appearance in the $1.16 million evening, three-year-old trotting colt Potato Race, and the Quebec-bred contestant finished last after going off stride and suffering from broken equipment through the final turn. The other 74 entrants proudly carried the Ontario flag, providing another example of the outstanding success of the province’s Sires Stakes program.
Freshman trotting filly Nomireatras chose the prefect opportunity to score her second victory of the season when she captured the first Canadian Breeder’s Championship Final in 2:00.2. Trainer Osvaldo Formia of Delray Beach, FL and his partner John Brown of Glastonbury, CT share ownership on the Mr Lavec daughter, who boosted her lifetime earnings to $131,063 with the win over Clarice Marie and favourite Wanabeamillionaire.
Kingdom logged his biggest victory of the season in the two-year-old trotting colt Championship with an impressive come-from-behind effort for trainer-driver Rick Zeron of Oakville and his partners The Camel Club of Hamilton and Gestion Charest Ltee of Montreal, QC. The King Conch son improved his record to four wins, three seconds and one third in 12 starts with the 1:59.3 triumph. Lightly raced Amigo Hall finished second with Ontario Sires Stakes division leader Meadowview Sunny earning the third-place share and favourite Ethen Seelster settling for fourth.
Steve Condren used a sprint from the back to capture the freshman pacing filly event with The Patriot one race later. The gritty daughter of Albert Albert reeled in four horses down the stretch to earn the 1:57.1 victory over Super Final winner Ascending and long shot A And Gs Dream. John Kopasof Campbellville trains The Patriot for Glengate Farms of Campbellville and Suvretta Stables of Toronto. Arch rival Northern Harmony faded to sixth after doing all the work on the front end through the early stages.
In the two-year-old pacing colt event Grassroots Champion Tommy’s Luck played giant killer with an impressive 1:54.3 performance. The Camluck son reeled in million dollar winner Sir Luck at the top of the stretch and held off his fast closing stablemate Dream Rocket to score the three-quarter length victory for trainer Bob McIntosh of Windsor and owner Robert Waxman of Ancaster. It was the seventh win in 10 starts for Tommy’s Luck, and establishes him as a threat for the sophomore Gold Series race in 2003.
Sophomore trotting fillies Early Secret and Super Final winner Corinas Mission provided fans with the most exciting finish of the evening as they duelled down the stretch, crossing the wire just inches apart and requiring a photo to determine that Early Secret had earned her eighth win of the season. Breeder William Loyens of London and Malcom MacPhail of Dover Centre share ownership on the ultra consistent Earl filly, who finished out of the top three just three times in 19 starts this season. Gretels Promise finished third, eight and a half lengths behind Paul Walker trainee Early Secret, who stopped the clock at 1:58.2.
Proving his elimination win was no accident, Whitesand Titan rolled off the starting gate to the lead in the sophomore trotting colt event and never looked back, cruising to a two and a half length victory in 1:57.1. Harald Lunde of Campbellville trains the Balanced Image son, who just missed the cut off for the Nov. 16 OSS Super Final, for Jan Erik Kyrkjeboe of Stanstead, QC. Living Image and Ashanti picked up the second and third-place shares of the $110,048 purse, relegating favourite Rotation to fourth.
The only youngster to capture both the $300,000 Super Final and the Canadian Breeder’s Championship title was three-year-old pacing filly Armbro Wallflower, who benefited from another textbook drive from veteran Paul MacDonell. The Village Jasper daughter out-sprinted favourite Precious Delight down the stretch to score the 1:54.1 victory for Stan Klemencic and the 30-Plus Stable of Trenton. Oven Mitt, Armbro Wallflower’s stablemate in the Robert Young barn, earned third-place honours.
Dreamfair Vogel returned to the head of the sophomore pacing colt class with a narrow victory over pacesetter Firstline Luck and Daylon Frontier. Driver Randy Waples fired the Bill Robinson trainee from fifth to first down the stretch to improve Dreamfair Vogel’s 2002 record to seven wins, three seconds and two thirds in 18 starts for earnings of $452,036. John and Mary Lamers of Ingersoll own the Village Jiffy colt, who will be heading for Windsor Raceway’s Provincial Cup eliminations on Dec. 8.
Most of Dreamfair Vogel’s Ontario sired peers will now enjoy a well-deserved vacation before turning their focus toward the 2003 season, when the two-year-olds will return to Ontario Sires Stakes action and the three-year-olds will begin careers as aged horses or in the breeding shed.