Two-year-old pacing fillies were once again the stars of Woodbine Mohawk Park’s program on Tuesday evening, competing in five $23,500 Grassroots divisions.
Got Power, a half-sister to top three-year-old pacing filly Powerful Chris, got her second win over the Woodbine Mohawk Park oval in the second division. Starting from Post 9, driver Chris Christoforou of Campbellville eased the filly off the gate and settled in seventh as Even Louder led the field to a :27.4 opening quarter. Christoforou joined the parade in the outer lane heading for the :57.4 half, and Got Power was sitting sixth when Even Louder reached the 1:25.3 three-quarters, but once she hit high gear in the stretch Got Power sailed by her peers to 1:54.4 victory. Satdnite Jukebox was two and one-quarter lengths back in second, just ahead of Mittaroniandcheese.
“She raced very well her first start on the front to win and followed up with an impressive off the pace win tonight,” said Christoforou, who also drove the filly to her first win on July 2. “She’s done everything I’ve asked of her and hopefully continues to improve with each race.”
Christoforou drives Got Power for trainer Tony O’Sullivan of Cambridge and his partners Gary Volpe of St. Thomas and William Hill of Dundas, ON. The daughter of Royal Mattjesty and Cell Power caught O’Sullivan’s eye on a visit to Winbak Farm last fall and he placed the winning bid of $15,000 at the London Selected Yearling Sale.
“She’s very smart, pretty easy gaited and just nothing seems to faze her very much,” said O’Sullivan of the youngster. “She’ll look around at things to be inquisitive, but she’s never really trained badly and every time I’ve asked her to do something she’s done it, so she’s pretty nice right now.”
After her June 21 qualifier and her win last Tuesday O’Sullivan considered starting Got Power in the Gold Series, but for now he feels the filly is best suited to the Grassroots program.
“I do believe that Got Power is a really nice filly, but I just think she’s not quite ready yet,” said O’Sullivan.
“Next year she’s going to develop into a real nice sized filly. She wouldn’t be as big as Powerful Chris was last year, but the thing I like about Got Power is she’s got a real good shoulder and bum. And honestly her conformation is fantastic, she looks like a colt,” the trainer added. “She’s just got a presence about her; you can see it on the track, right. She’s just a good looking filly, so I think if I look after her she’ll develop along pretty good.”
Father and son Gregg and Doug McNair teamed up to win two of the divisions, starting the evening off in the winner’s circle with Beach Sports and making a second trip after Race 7 with Landry Seelster.
Fan Favourite Beach Sports was a 1:55.4 winner from Post 10 for the Guelph, ON residents, reaching the wire one and three-quarter lengths ahead of Preeminence and Highland Salsa. A $9,000 purchase from the London Selected Yearling Sale, the Sportswriter half-sister to top sophomore pacing colt Century Farroh is owned by Ross Family Farms Ltd. of Wingham, ON.
“She won pretty handy, a tough job from the 10-hole,” said Doug McNair. “I’d only went with her once, in the qualifier (July 2). Dad told me she had some go, but she was lazy the whole way. I was wondering what he was talking about and then I pulled the plugs and she flew home; really surprised me.”
Doug McNair and Landry Seelster squeezed through traffic late to secure the half-length victory in the fourth $23,500 division. The Mach Three daughter bested Chasethecloudsaway and Isla Seelster with her 1:55 effort. Trainer Gregg McNair shares ownership of the filly, a $45,000 purchase from the London Selected Yearling Sale, with Ilderton Boys Stable of London, ON and Dany Fontaine of Ormston, QC.
“She’s been training good all year, but she’s a little warm so I wanted to take my time with her and we got lucky to slide through at the end,” said Doug McNair. “I think with her breeding she should get better.”
Fan favourite So Delightful captured the third division with a come-from-behind effort that saw her roll home a one and one-quarter length winner in 1:54.2. Fiorella and Bettorbeasecret also closed well for second and third.
Arthur, ON resident Trevor Henry drove So Delightful to the win for trainer Bob McIntosh of Windsor, ON and his fellow owner-breeders C S X Stables of Liberty Center, OH and Al McIntosh Holdings Inc. of Leamington, ON.
“She’s a very nice filly,” said Henry, who also drove the Bettors Delight daughter in her June 21 and 27 qualifiers. “She will eventually make a Gold filly I think. She’s got all the tools.”
The last division saw Capistrano match So Delightful’s clocking, as driver Phil Hudon sent the Warrawee Needy filly straight to the front from Post 9 and never had cause to look over his shoulder. Capistrano cruised home a three and three-quarter length winner in 1:54.2, besting Kat and Zephyr Seelster.
“It was nice to pick up a lovely drive like that,” said Hudon, who was making his first appearance in the filly’s race bike. “She did everything well in hand. She’s a nice filly and everything worked out great.”
Hudon engineered the win for trainer Harry Poulton of Milton and fractional ownership group TheStable Capistrano Group of Guelph, ON.
The two-year-old pacing fillies will be back at Woodbine Mohawk Park for their second Ontario Sires Stakes Grassroots start on July 18.
The two-year-old trotting fillies make their Gold Series debut at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Thursday, July 11, competing in three divisions. The first race gets under way at 7:10 pm and the fillies will show off their skills in Races 2, 3 and 6.
Complete results for Tuesday’s program are available at https://standardbredcanada.ca/racing/results/data/r0709wbsbsn.dat.
(Photo of Got Power and Chris Christoforou courtesy of New Image Media)