Races were scheduled for Truro Raceway
The Maritime Breeders Stakes for two-year-old trotters and pacers is moving across the Northumberland Strait to call P.E.I. home for 2013.
The stakes are the richest races of the season on the Maritime harness racing calendar. Originally, the events were scheduled to be held at Truro Raceway with the eliminations for two-year-old pacing colts and fillies and two-year-old trotters to be held Oct. 20 with the three finals a week later on Oct. 27. The three-year-old events are held on P.E.I., with the three-year-old colt and filly pacers already held in June at the Charlottetown Driving Park.
Eldred Nicholson, secretary of the P.E.I. Harness Racing Industry Association, says officials from Truro Raceway called to ask if the three events could be held on the Island. Truro Raceway has been going through a tumultuous period of uncertainty due to a lack of revenue. Officials in Truro deem the $20,000 for holding the three events could be used to extend their already reduced racing season by two dates. Island officials agreed last week to host the event.
Now the two-year-old pacing colts and fillies will have their eliminations Oct. 19 in Charlottetown, with the finals on Oct. 26, while the two- and three-year-old trot events will now have eliminations Oct. 20 at the Summerside Raceway with the finals Oct. 27 at that same track. The three-year-old trotters were originally scheduled to race Oct. 19 and 26 in Charlottetown, but the decision was made to consolidate the pacers in one location and trotters in another to alleviate the pressure for overnight starts the days of the eliminations.
Nicholson says, the $20,000 price tag will come from the industry association’s general revenue fund, not straight for the purse pool.
“We felt it was the best scenario,” Nicholson said of the decision to hold the events here. “There was no one else to host it. It wouldn’t be fair to those who paid in to the stake to not get to race.”
Wayne Pike, industry association executive director, reminds horsemen declarations for the pacing events eliminations will now have to be in for Wednesday, Oct. 16, instead of the posted Oct. 17.
Saturday, the two-year-old pacing colts take the stage at the Charlottetown Driving Park with the Joe O’Brien Memorial stake, while the two-year-old pacing fillies race in the Lady Slipper stake. Post time for the 14-dash card is 6 p.m.
Sunday at the Summerside Raceway, the 14-dash card gets underway at 1 p.m. featuring the Lady Slipper stake for three-year-old filly pacers.
The Atlantic Classic Yearling Sale is set for Friday, Oct. 11, at the Crapaud Agriplex with a 2:30 p.m. start time and over 100 young horses selling.
Across the continent
Saturday was a good day for the MacDonald boys from Kingston in the top events being held in North America.
At Mohawk Raceway in Campbellville, Ont., Anthony MacDonald drove Bugger Bruiser to victory in the $200,000 Ontario Sires Stakes super final for two-year-old colt pacers in 1:50.3 for trainer Carmen Auciello. At Yonkers Raceway in Yonkers, N.Y., Mark MacDonald drove Flyhawk El Durado to the winner’s circle in 1:58 for trainer Mark Ford in the $225,000 New York Sires Stakes final for two-year-old colt trotters. Mark was also third in two other $225,000 finals.
Sunday at The Red Mile in Lexington, Ky., Bolt The Duer was second in his $10,000 elimination of the Allerage stakes for aged pacers to A Rocknroll Dance. Bolt The Duer has the rail in the $175,000 final this Sunday in a field that includes Gold Cup and Saucer finalists Up The Credit and Escape The News.
Saturday at the CDP:
Race 1 – Kellys Cross
Race 2 – JPs Warrior
Race 3 – Rhondas Example
Race 4 – Elm Grove Intrepid
Race 5 – Someone Like You
Race 6 – Charlottes Style
Race 7 – Dumas Walker
Race 8 – Silverhill Diamond
Race 9 – Shock The Rock
Race 10 – Big League
Race 11 – Tobins Fusion
Race 12 – All Turain
Race 13 – Saulsbrook Alana
Race 14 – Incredible Mike
(Nicholas Oakes’ column appears in The Guardian each Friday. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.)