Hail the Taxi favoured in SRW feature

Vance Cameron
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Taking a look at last week’s Chappell, Dewar Stakes

The horses at Red Shores at Summerside Raceway are on display on Sunday, with Race 1 lining up at 1 p.m.

Hail the Taxi (Gilles Barrieau) is favoured in the Sunday feature that carries a $1,900 purse. This horse will make his Island debut, and carries a lot of credentials from a limited number of starts. The four-year-old son of Art Major earned over $200,000 as a two-year-old.

He only had 11 starts as a three-year-old, marching to the Vernon Downs winner’s circle in 1:51 and earning in excess of $80,000. If you are wondering how he likes a half-mile track, he was a winner at Younkers in 1:54, closing out that mile with a 27.4 quarter. 

Darren Trainor, last year’s trainer of the year, conditions this fella for his connections.

 

The Chappell and Dewar Stakes

The three-year-old pacing colts and fillies were in mid-season form contesting the Ruby Chappell and the Bob Dewar Memorial Stakes last weekend.

Saulsbrook Alana did not disappoint in her season debut, winning in 1:57. That mile established a new track record in Summerside.

Although Alana did win, driver Gilles Barrieau deserves a lot of credit for keeping this filly together for the entire mile. From the booth it looked like she could have went off stride at any given moment.

Alana will skip Sunday’s Atlantic Sire Stakes in Truro, N.S.

The queen of Kensington, Elm Grove Inarush, was more than ready to tackle her Maritime rivals. The Eddy Doucette-trainee was stellar in her victory of the Ruby Chappell, stopping the clock in 1:58.1 for driver Mark Bradley.

Inarush paced her back half in 57 seconds and change without a ripple in her stride. She will contest one of the $9,720 Atlantic Sire Stakes in Truro on Sunday. Good luck!

 

Purse increase

The P.E.I. Harness Racing Industry Association and provincial government announced last week that purse money on the Island will get an increase. All overnight purse money for Lobster Festival Week and Old Home Week will see at least a 10-per-cent jump. 

The Governor’s Plate and Gold Cup and Saucer are also on the rise. The rumour mill has the Cup and Saucer going for $75,000, and that will lure some big names in racing. 

Word on the street has Foiled Again coming to the Island and after State Treasurer came from last to win the Molson Pace at the London, Ont., half-miler, a return to Charlottetown could be in the works. 

I spoke to Cassie Coleman at the O’Brien Awards in February, and she told me she would like to come to the Island Old Home Week to contest the Gold Cup and Saucer. 

At that time Vegas Vacation was on her mind, but this horse has had some issues and hasn’t surfaced yet. Coleman does have lots of other power in her stable that would be welcomed.

 

The Babies

I had the opportunity to have a quick chat with Clare and Kenny MacDonald after the races last Sunday. I asked Kenny for his “babies report” (two-year-olds in training). He told me that they are in 2:14 over the farm track in a jog cart. 

The two-year-olds should be on the scene this month, with their careers getting underway in July.

Picks

A look at Sunday’s picks:

Best bets – Sea Queen in Race 2, and Blooming Last in Race 4.

Long shot possibilities – Paphos in Race 5, and Flaming Prince in Race 9.

 

Vance Cameron is the track announcer in Summerside and Charlottetown. Comments and suggestions can be sent to jpsports@journalpioneer.com.

Organizations: Younkers, P.E.I. Harness Racing Industry Association, Molson Pace

Geographic location: Iceland, Summerside, Truro Charlottetown Kensington London, Ont.

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