The Atlantic Sire Stakes for the three-year-old pacing fillies are the highlight of Thursday’s harness racing card at Red Shores at Summerside Raceway.
Six divisions – three A and three B – account for half of the 12 dashes on the Lobster Festival program, which will get underway at 7 p.m.
The B divisions will race for total purses of $2,500, and each A event will go for $9,620.
Babies Gigolo (Jason Hughes) had a very good freshman season in 2013, taking a record in 1:59.3, and earning in excess of $12,000. Phillip DesRoches, who owns and trains this filly, led all trainers in victories at the local oval last year.
Her 1:59.2 qualifier makes her the overwhelming choice in the first race of the night.
Paul Murphy, the author of Behind The Gate, a best-selling book in the Maritimes, has the morning-line favourite in the second stakes event, Gracious Minnie. Driver Lenny Myers had an excellent stakes prep in their last race.
Minnie sailed right to the front and won 2:00, including a closing quarter in 28 and change.
The third B stake lists Waterhook as the filly to beat. Waterhook has three victories on the season, taking a record of 1:58.4 in Charlottetown. Waterhook’s credentials were good enough on her own before adding the driving skills of Gilles Barrieau.
In the A divisions, there may have been a war started after these three-year-old fillies were in North Sydney, N.S., last weekend. The only bad news for us is the battle can’t continue Thursday because the two combatants did not draw in together.
Lovineveryminute (Todd Trites) was parked to the half by Elm Grove Inrush (Mark Bradley) in 55.3 seconds, and I’m told you could have put three tractor trailer trucks in the two-hole.
Lovineveryminute should rebound all right Thursday as before that parking in North Sydney she had wins in 1:56.2, 1:55.4 and 1:56.3.
Saulsbrook Alana was the fastest filly in all of Canada on a half-mile track last year. Her remarkable trip of 1:55.1 in Summerside was, from my corner, one of those untouchable records.
Alana, however, is not close to the filly she was a year ago. She has been making breaks on a regular basis. Let’s hope the real Saulsbrook Alana is in Summerside.
The final $9,620 division of the Atlantic Sire Stakes features the reigning two-year-old pacing filly award winner at the Prince County Horseman’s Club Banquet. Elm Grove Inrush (Mark Bradley) is the queen of Kensington, and has over $60,000 in the bank.
The Eddy Doucette-trainee was the issue of the parking ticket in North Sydney. The filly did tire in the stretch, and I look for a more conservative drive
Friday’s Lobster Festival harness racing card will welcome the glamour boys of racing to Summerside. The three-year-old pacing colts will strut their stuff on a 12-dash card. Post time is 7 p.m.
A look at Thursday’s picks:
Best bets - Babies Gigolo in Race 1, and Elm Grove Inrush in Race 11.
Long shot possibilities - Makes Me Stupid in Race 6, and After Lunch Larry in Race 8.
Vance Cameron is the track announcer in Summerside and Charlottetown. Comments and suggestions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.