Driver Louis-Philippe Roy and trainer Chantal Mitchell teamed up to win a pair of $22,800 Grassroots divisions at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Tuesday, Sept. 15, ensuring a top 20 finish for both Shiatzu Seelster and Ourlittlemiracle in the two-year-old pacing filly division.
Roy and Mitchell scored their first win of the night in the second division with Shiatzu Seelster. Starting from Post 6 Roy and the filly left smartly and settled into third as Amini led the field to a :26.4 quarter and a :57 half. Amini continued to lead at the 1:25.2 three-quarters and Shiatzu Seelster continued to sit along the rail, waiting until the stretch to wiggle out and sprint home to a one and one-quarter length win in a personal best 1:54. Control The Thong closed well for second and favourite CL Sportsextreme was third.
“She’s one of the two fillies I trained down myself last winter,” said Roy, who has two homebreds to train this winter and will be heading back to the yearling sales for a few additional young horses to keep him busy through the non-stakes season. “She’s not the fastest of the two, but the biggest quality that she has is that she loves her job and gives everything she has every time.”
Roy shares ownership of Shiatzu Seelster with 1876472 Ontario Inc. of Guelph, ON. The win was the State Treasurer daughter’s second in Grassroots action and gives her a total of 128 points and fourth spot in the division standings. The filly also made one start at the Gold Series level, finishing second at Grand River Raceway on Sept. 4.
“She went to the Gold two weeks ago at Grand River, and she got a great trip and finished second. It bravened her up and she was able to come back here tonight and kind of do the same thing, sit to the inside, wait for things to open up, and come up and get a win,” said Mitchell. “She’s just a nice filly that tries hard.”
Ourlittlemiracle started her season with a runner-up finish in the Grassroots season opener, and then moved up to the Gold level where her best result was a fourth. Mitchell trains the Bettors Delight daughter for Windermere Stable LLC of New York, NY, Robert Muscara of Ivyland, PA, William Rochetti, Jr. and Tanya Rochetti of Cherry Hill, NJ and after a tough trip in the Grand River Gold event the group decided a return to the Grassroots was in order.
“She really just had terrible luck,” said Waterdown, ON resident Mitchell. “Even at Grand River, we raced three that night and she didn’t get any money and I think she raced the best out of all three of them. So since she didn’t have enough points to look like she was going to get into the Super Final we said, ‘Well let’s give her a try back in the Grassroots and she if we can make it there’. It worked out, thankfully.”
Ourlittlemiracle fired out of Post 6 in the third division and led the field through a :27.4 quarter, :57.1 half and 1:25.2 three-quarters on her way to a one length victory in a personal best 1:54.2. Virtual Success finished second and fan favourite Cyclone Sister was third.
“She never had the chance to prove herself much, getting bad posts or drawing tough divisions in the Golds,” said Guelph, ON resident Roy. “She definitely is one of the best in the Grassroots. Chantal’s team is doing a great job with both fillies.”
With one win and one second in Grassroots action, Ourlittlemiracle finishes up the season with 75 points and thirteenth spot in the standings. The top 20 point earners advance to the Oct. 1 Semi-Finals and the top five finishers from each Semi-Final earn a berth in the $75,000 Grassroots Championship at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Oct. 10.
“Hopefully we get some luck with the draw and then a little racing luck on our side and see if we can get two in the Final,” said Mitchell.
The other two divisions went to Celia Bayama and Chiefs Dream Girl, who will join Shiatzu Seelster and Ourlittlemiracle in the postseason.
Sylvain Filon piloted Celia Bayama to a 1:54 personal best in the first division, drawing away to a three and three-quarter length victory over favourite Come On Sun and Steelmeatreasure. The Milton resident engineered the win, the Bettors Delight daughter’s first in Grassroots action, for trainer Richard Moreau and owner-breeder Bayama Farms Inc. of Saint-Andre-D’Argenteuil, QC. Celia Bayama heads into the postseason in eighth spot with 99 points.
Chiefs Dream Girl took the last division with a 1:54.2 personal best that came as no surprise to Jody Jamieson, who guided the filly to the three length win over Jackieofalltrades and Sweet Pink.
“I was really confident in her tonight going into the race. I didn’t think she could get beat,” said Jamieson. “She’s just been getting stronger with each start, and she should continue on like this.”
The Moffat resident piloted Chiefs Dream Girl to her second Grassroots win for trainer Jack Moiseyev and owners High Stakes Inc. of Moffat, ON and LSC Stables of North Brunswick, NJ. The Sunshine Beach daughter wraps up the regular season ranked fifth with 125 points.
Complete results from Tuesday’s program are available at Woodbine Mohawk Park Results. Grassroots point standings can be found on the Ontario Sires Stakes Leaderboard.
The two-year-old pacing colts will wrap up their Grassroots regular season at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Thursday, Sept. 17, competing in Races 2, 4, 7 and 9 on the program, which gets under way at 7 pm.
Race Replays: Race 1 – Celia Bayama; Race 3 – Shiatzu Seelster; Race 7 – Ourlittlemiracle; Race 9 – Chiefs Dream Girl
(Photo of Louis-Philippe Roy and Shiatzu Seelster courtesy New Image Media)
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