Current NewsCurrent News for July '19
Zorgwijk Tim trots to track record on Legends Day card
Ontario’s three-year-old trotting colts laid down some impressive miles in Grassroots action on Clinton Raceway’s Legends Day program Sunday, capped off by a track record for Zorgwijk Tim.
“He raced good, he got lucky though,” said trainer Lyle MacArthur of Zorgwijk Tim’s 1:58.1 record-setting effort. “He still went in 1:58.1, he went a real good mile, but it looked like he was just going to, probably, get a three and he ended up getting all the marbles so like I said, I like the thought of being lucky rather than good sometimes.”
After sitting fourth for much of the mile, watching Archway ring up fractions of :29.1, :59.2 and 1:28.3, driver Robert Shepherd had just swung out from behind fan favourite Royale Elite and driver Jonathan Drury when Archway made a break and interfered with pocket-sitter Windsong Pioneer and Royale Elite. Zorgwijk Tim sailed past the leaders and was six and one-quarter lengths ahead of runner-ups Royale Elite and Windsong Pioneer at the wire.
“I thought I was maybe going to be third, and it just worked out they hooked up and the next thing I was by them,” said Flamborough, ON resident Shepherd. “He’s a nice horse to drive and situations like that, it worked out for him because he’s so nice to drive and he trots good. He’s handy that way. He’s a nice little horse, not a real big horse, but he’s really good to deal with.”
The mile was a personal best for Zorgwijk Tim and lowered the former track record for three-year-old trotting colts over the Clinton Raceway half-mile by one and two-fifths of a second.
“Going up the backstretch I thought, ‘I’ve got to get out on Jonathan’s (Drury) back,’ and I went to move him out and I kind of asked him to catch right up to Jonathan and he was struggling a little to get to his back, so I knew they were moving along pretty good,” said Shepherd. “Good mile for a trotter over Clinton, especially three-year-olds.”
It was also something of a redemptive effort for the Angus Hall colt, who made his own break in the June 5 Grassroots season opener at Grand River Raceway and was placed from fifth back to seventh. Linda Wellwood of St. George Brant, Tammy Aspden of Caistor Centre and Anna Ruijs of Ancaster, ON share ownership of Zorwijk Tim, who boosted his sophomore earnings to $34,473 with his first Ontario Sires Stakes win.
Before Zorgwijk Tim lowered the track record in the fourth division, Gold Edition matched the former mark with a 1:59.3 effort in the second $22,100 split.
Starting from Post 6, driver Alfie Carroll hustled Gold Edition off the starting gate and the pair led the field through fractions of :30, 1:01.3 and 1:31 before sailing home to a one length victory over Encarnacion. Mr Choo was well back in third.
“He’s a nice horse. I even had him staked a little bit in the open stakes in the fall, but I don’t know if he’s that kind of horse,” said trainer Blair Burgess. “I always thought he was a borderline Gold horse, and now we’re racing Grassroots because he likes the half, he really loves the half, as you can see today. He loved Grand River and loved it here. He’s handy on the turns; I think he trots the turns even better than the straightaways.”
The win was Gold Edition’s second straight in Grassroots action this season and boosted the E L Titan son’s sophomore bank roll to $38,048 for owners Stirling Fisher of Waterloo and Karin Olsson Burgess of Campbellville, ON.
Red Hot Torch opened the Legends Day program with a 2:02 score in the first Grassroots division, getting a head in front of pacesetter King For Life. Mackjustice finished well behind the duelling leaders in third. Jonathan Drury piloted Angus Hall son Red Hot Torch to his first lifetime win for trainer Shawn Steacy and owner 1187422 Ontario Inc. of Ottawa, ON.
Debt Collector went gate-to-wire in the third Grassroots division, hanging on for a half-length 2:01.3 victory over Titan M Up and Justice For Narnia. Travis Henry engineered the Holiday Road gelding’s third straight win for trainer Keith Jones and owner Douglas McCarthy of Holland Landing, ON.
Raising Royalty earned his second Grassroots win, and fifth in six sophomore starts, with a 2:01 effort in the last division. The Royalty For Life son and driver Sylvain Filion controlled the pace from start to finish and sailed under the wire two and one-quarter lengths ahead of favourite LA Magic and The Great Farini. Stephen Bossence conditions Raising Royalty for Stephen Palermo of Etobicoke, ON.
One race later the large crowd gathered along the rail for the Legends Day Trot and was treated to a thrilling finish by Hall of Fame drivers David Miller, Doug Brown, Trevor Ritchie, Steve Condren, Wally Hennessey, Dave Wall and Ron Waples. Miller and Dominum Deo would emerge the winners, getting a neck in front of Brown and Azucar with a 1:59.3 effort. Ritchie and Lets Leavem were just one-half length back in third.
Miller, making his second appearance at the biennial fundraiser for the Clinton Public Hospital Foundation, engineered the victory for trainer Mary Paulic and owner Allan Kuepfer of Newton, ON.
The three-year-old trotting colts will make their third Grassroots start Rideau Carleton Raceway on July 21, while Ontario Sires Stakes action returns to Clinton Raceway on Sunday, August 11 with Grassroots action for the three-year-old trotting fillies.
Complete results for Sunday’s program can be found at Clinton Raceway Results — Sunday, June 23, 2019.