Things gear up tonight with Gold Cup and Saucer Trial 1

Published on August 12, 2017

A highly competitive field of seven horses will go behind the gate tonight in Gold Cup and Saucer Trial 1 at the Charlottetown Driving Park. Windsong Leo has rail control for trainer Daniel O’Brian.

©Guardian file photo

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. - On paper, Always At My Place seems to be in a league of his own Saturday night in Sobey’s Gold Cup and Saucer Trial 1 but over the years this race has proved anything can happen at any time.

The 12-dash evening program kicks off at 7 p.m. at the Charlottetown Driving Park as Old Home Week racing gears up. The top four finishers in the $12,500 trial advance to the $60,000 Sobey’s Gold Cup and Saucer final next Saturday night while the next three will race in the $20,000 James (Roach) MacGregor consolation.

Charlottetown’s leading driver, Marc Campbell, drives Always At My Place from Post 6 in the Trial 1 field of seven for trainer Ron Burke and owners Burke Racing Stable, Weaver Bruscemi and Phillip Collura of Pennsylvania and Lawrence Karr of New Jersey. Campbell and Burke teamed up to win the 2013 and 2015 editions of the East Coast classic, and this six-year-old son of Always A Virgin appears to be a solid contender again this year with him just winning in 1:48.2 over Pocono Downs in Pennsylvania.

Skyway Boomer and Stover are not names familiar to Island race fans but they are almost entirely owned by Islanders with the partnership of Jody Sanderson of Doha, Qatar (but formerly from York Point) and Dean Larkin of Kanata, Ont., (formerly from New Glasgow), along with trainer Jamie Copley of Ontario, who co-owns as Copley Stables. Skyway Boomer has Post 4 with leading Rideau Carleton driver Brett MacDonald at the lines while Stover has Post 5 with the nation’s leading dash winning driver, Bob McClure, in the stirrups.

Windsong Leo has rail control for trainer Daniel O’Brian, formerly of New Brunswick but now racing in Ontario as Charlottetown native Jason Ryan picks up the drive with the pacer showing miles in 1:50 over Mohawk Raceway in Ontario.

Governor’s Plate champion Do Over Hanover will attempt to get Jason Hughes his first appearance in the Gold Cup and Saucer final. The Post 2 starter rides a six-race win streak with half of those coming for owners Allard Racing of Quebec, Steven MacRae of Vernon Bridge and Red Isle Racing of North Granville.

Shadow Place leaves from Post 3 with Gilles Barrieau picking up the drive for trainer Kyle Fellows of Ontario. The pacer was a recent winner in 1:50.3 over Mohawk Raceway.

Crombie A is handed the outside Post 7 with Gary Chappell in the seat for trainer Rene Allard and owners Allard Racing of Kapildeo Singh of New York. The 11-year-old son of Life Sign was back in his last start but has all kinds of back class as he currently holds the all-age Truro Raceway track record in Nova Scotia and formerly held the track records at the CDP and Yonkers Raceway in New York.

Nicholas Oakes is covering Old Home Week racing for The Guardian, culminating with the Gold Cup and Saucer Race on Aug. 19