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What you need to know about COVID-19: September 22, 2020
The biggest week of the racing season is here with a very different feel as Red Shores at the Charlottetown Driving Park ramps up for Gold Cup and Saucer Week 2020.
With 11 cards of racing in 10 days, there will be plenty of action on the track, including a locally centred slate of two trials for The Guardian Gold Cup and Saucer. The trials, which are set for Saturday and Monday evening, have attracted 15 entrants with only one horse coming from outside the region this year.
Time To Dance is the favourite in Saturday’s $12,500 trial for trainer-driver Marc Campbell and owners Brent Campbell of Charlottetown and Matt McDonald of Edwards, Ont. The trial also has fellow Island horses Simple Kinda Man (Jason Hughes), Best To Hurst (David Dowling), Screen Test (Corey MacPherson), Avatar J (Gilles Barrieau) and Freddy Bear (Adam Merner). New Brunswick horse Father Ofthe Year (Mike Downey) has the rail while Inverness, N.S., ship-in Euchred (Redmond Doucet) will leave from Post 7.
Monday’s $12,500 trial will see Ontario invader Casimir Richie P leave the open ranks at Woodbine Mohawk Park in Ontario for trainer Dr. Ian Moore and draw Post 3. Lindsay Construction Cup winner and Truro Raceway track record holder Yankee Osborne has the rail for Neill MacInnis while Campbell-trained and driven Rose Run Quest will leave from the outside Post 7. The field also has Woodmere Ideal Art from New Brunswick and Island horses Lisburn, Mach It Again and JJ Powerball.
The biggest three-year-old race of the season saw the lion’s share come to P.E.I. as Tobins Rebel won the $40,000 Barrieau-McIsaac memorial stake Saturday afternoon at Exhibition Park Raceway in Saint John, N.B.
Daniel Ross of Belfast owns the son of Camystic and had trainer Barrieau in the driver’s seat as the colt cut out a 1:57-winning mile. Second went to Hampshire foaled Little Manny (Stephen Trites) while Red Dirt Star (Mark Haig) was third for owner Ross and trainer Barrieau.
All the top two-year-olds were in Summerside Sunday afternoon for a plethora of stakes action and the story of the day continued to be Woodmere Stealdeal. The Steelhead Hanover colt cruised the Prince County oval in 1:55.2, closing out the mile in 27.1 for driver Campbell and trainer Danny Romo. The trip was the third track record for the undefeated colt from only five lifetime starts and tied Half Cut’s 2017 Atlantic Breeder’s Crown victory for the fastest mile ever paced by a two-year-old colt in Atlantic Canada.
My condolences to the MacKay family on the recent passing of Dixie MacKay of Bible Hill, N.S. The 68-year-old was the wife of Summerside native, trainer-driver Emmons MacKay, a winner of more than 2,000 races as a driver, and mother of trainer-driver Tammy MacKay and horse owner Ozzie MacKay. Known for her hospitality when anyone came to race at Truro, MacKay is sure to be missed by horse people from across the region.
Nicholas Oakes' column appears in The Guardian each Friday. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- UPDATE: The Guardian Gold Cup and Saucer going forward with reduced crowd at Charlottetown Driving Park
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- DOWN THE BACKSTRETCH: Steelhead Hanover offspring off to strong start to racing careers
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