TORONTO, November 25, 2022
– Patience is a virtue, and in the case of three-year-old filly Pleasure’s Gold, patience was a winning strategy. The daughter of Souper Speedy made only one start at two, before coming back at three to win the Ontario Sire Heritage Series.
A homebred for Gordon and Elizabeth Lickrish, Pleasure’s Gold, is out of Good as Gold the dam of the Lickrish’s highest earning horse, stakes winning mare Golden Vision.
From her May foaling at their Schomberg, Ont., farm Pleasure’s Gold was a very correct filly, and looked strong out in the field. So, when trainer Tino Attard wanted to bring her along slowly, and only give her one start during her juvenile season, Gordon was accepting of trusting the process.
“Tino is very patient with his two-year-olds,” said Lickrish. “He doesn’t rush them to the races. As an owner sometimes you get a little anxious to see your horse competing on the track, but they took her along carefully and she did quite well.”
Pleasure’s Gold wintered at the old Gardiner Farms in Caledon, Ont., and after a strong off-season started her three-year-old campaign with a third-place finish in a maiden option claimer at Woodbine, before breaking her maiden at third asking on June 12 at the Etobicoke oval.
Leg one of the Ontario Sire Heritage Series was her stakes debut, but Lickrish was confident that she would hold her own in the $100,000 Georgian Bay, and she did, finishing second in the five-furlong sprint over the Woodbine Inner Turf. Her next start out, she won the $100,000 Rondeau Bay at Fort Erie Race Track.
“Tino had a very high opinion of the horse, and he was the one that decided we would go for that series, and of course it worked out well,” said Lickrish.
Ontario Racing’s Thoroughbred Improvement Program Committee established the Heritage Series in 2021 to provide additional racing opportunities for Ontario Sired horses, with a male and female division.
The 2022 edition had three legs prior to the final, staged at Woodbine and Fort Erie Race Track, each worth $100,000, and in addition to the purse money, $70,000 in bonus money was paid out to the top-three finishers in each division based on a point system, $20,000 to first, $10,000 to second, $5,000 to third.
Pleasure’s Gold improved her next time out to win the $100,000 Rondeau Bay over six furlongs on the Fort Erie main track, and her performance in the final two legs secured her the top spot in the series standings.
“She got a bit tired in the final, which was a tough day because no one was coming from off the pace that day, it was very difficult,” said Lickrish. “But she had amassed enough points to win the Series, so we were very happy.”
The Ontario Sire Heritage Series continued to grow in its second year, and Lickrish is glad for the support it proves to breeders and owners committed to the Ontario market.
“Ontario Racing is doing a really good job with putting these type of events together. It’s excellent for the owners,” said Lickrish. “And what they are doing with giving sizable cheques to the breeders through the (Breeders Awards) is an excellent help. They have done some really excellent things.”
for the full Ontario Sire Heritage Series standings for three-year-old fillies.
Photo: Pleasure’s Gold wins the Rondeau Bay Stakes at Fort Erie Race Track on September 13, 2022. (Michael Burns).
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