Canada’s top drivers in town tonight for National Driving Championship
The question of who will wear the red and white of Canada at the 2015 World Driving Championship will be answered tonight at Red Shores at the Charlottetown Driving Park.
Eight of the best drivers from their respective regions will gather in Charlottetown to contest the National Driving Championships (NDC) presented by Standardbred Canada, P.E.I. Harness Racing Industry Association, P.E.I. 2014 Inc. and Red Shores.
Post-time for the 12-dash card is 7 p.m. The champion will be decided during eight of the 12 races on the card. The event concludes in Race 10.
The competition to see who can fulfill the dream of representing their country will get underway in Race 3. This year’s NDC is a little different than previous, with Standardbred Canada holding a draft to allow drivers to pick the horses they wanted to drive.
Two-time world driving champion Jody Jamieson has selected to drive the rail horse C J Bluefin, a favourite heading into the championship.
Sylvain Lacaille took his first-round selection in Race 3, selecting the two-entry Caughfoolinaround for owner Maggie Mccarthy and trainer Roy Reynolds.
Quebec native Guy Gagnon had the first-overall selection and took Umiztagoodthing in Race 10 from Post 5. Todd Walsh trains the five-year-old Modern Art gelding, who took a lifetime best in his last race of 1:56.4.
Brandon Campbell representing Alberta chose post 2 starter in Race 5 All Out. He is the son of former Island horseman Sanford Campbell. With two second-place finishes in his last two starts, the Clarkie Smith-trainee is listed as the morning-line favourite.
B.C. native Jim Marino landed the 5-2 favourite Playful Patty in Race 4.
The Rocketman, Billy Davis Jr., making his first trip to P.E.I., selected Ton Of Luck for the Ultimate Stables. Leaving from Post 5 in the sixth race, the three-year-old daughter of Camluck finished third in her last start pacing in 1:57.4.
The Flying Pilot, Ryan Ellis, drafted Mcdaisy Cutter for owners John and Stephen Quinn of Charlottetown. The daughter of Mcardle finished no worse than second in her last four starts.
Marc Campbell was saddled with the eighth overall pick. Campbell selected Panacotta from Post 1 in Race 8 but he made a break on Saturday, and after a questionable review it was deemed Panacotta had broken equipment after his break and not before, putting him on the qualifying list.
So instead Campbell has Rash B Havior. The four-year-old Lis Mara gelding played a contributing factor in gaining Campbell the victory in the Atlantic Regional Driving Championship.
The pair went right down the highway in the championship
winning in 1:56.4, a new lifetime mark.
The special Tuesday card will also feature the $25,000 Founders Cup and the $5,000 Builders Cup.
Wazzup Wazzup has drawn into Post 6 for trainer Corey Johnson. The six-year-old son of Life Sign is owned by the Rolling Hills Racing Stables of Uxbridge, ON. Tuesday night he will gain the services of Campbell.
Only beaten by a neck in the 55th running of The Sobeys Gold Cup and Saucer, Wazzup Wazzup is the morning line favourite.
Millionaire pacer Up The Credit will look to knock off the runner-up in the Gold Cup and Saucer. The six-year-old Western Terror horse has drawn into Post 3 for trainer and co-owner Carl Jamieson along with Tomas Kyron and Joanne Morrison. Jody Jamieson will do the driving.
D Gs Camme, All Turain, Ultimate Luck, Astor and Mach Wheel round out the power packed field of seven starters.
The 12th race on the card will feature the $5,000 Builders Cup. The race will recognize the local contribution by Doug Hill of Stratford, and Eric Johnston of Summerside. Modern Xhibit in-line to Jamieson has been listed as the morning-line choice from Post 3. The field also includes, Narragansett, Red Magician, Blissfull Bro, Cabo Pan Lucas, Machinthesand, Red Rock and Windemere Express.
There is no live racing Thursday at Red Shores at the Charlottetown Driving Park. Live racing returns Wednesday to Red Shores at the Summerside Racway at 7 p.m. and Saturday in Charlottetown at 6 p.m.
Compiled by Red Shores Bo Ford