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Sensational Rocket fired to victory at Quinte
August 4, 2003
By Sandra Snyder

BELLEVILLE, ON — Reg Gassien piloted Emersons Aah Jewel to a popular hometown victory in Grassroots action at Quinte Raceway on Monday afternoon.

Leaving from Post 6 the three-year-old pacing colt, owned and bred by Len Kordy of Picton, rocketed to the front and led the field through fractions of :30, 1:00 and 1:31.2 without facing a challenge. Pacing for the wire Sealcrest Dragon attempted to gain on Emersons Aah Jewel, but Gassien simply shifted the colt into overdrive and pulled off to the one length win in 2:00.1. Justatravelincam rounded out the top three in the $18,000 skirmish.

Also a winner in the June 30 Grassroots at Elmira Raceway, Emersons Aah Jewel boosted his 2003 statistics to six wins and three thirds in 13 starts with Monday’s hometown triumph. Timothy Gillespie trains the Armbro Emerson colt, who has banked $37,065 on Kordy’s behalf this year.

Four races after Emersons Aah Jewel made his way to the winner’s circle, Sensational Rocket set the Quinte oval on fire with a stunning 1:55.4 romp. The Pacific Rocket son and driver Michael Langdon took control of the race from the start and laid down red hot fractions of :28.2, :57.1 and 1:26.2 en route to their one length victory over Alexandras Top Hat. Alexandras Top Hat was the only colt able to stay with Sensational Rocket, third-place finisher Midnight Rustler was eight lengths back and the remainder of the field trailed home more than 14 lengths to the rear.

After starting his season with a runner-up finish in the May 17 Grassroots at Woodstock Raceway, Sensational Rocket tackled the Gold colts at Flamboro Downs on July 4, but failed to make the Final. Daryl Roberts, who trains the colt for Garf N Duke Stable and Mike Bannon of London and Donald Douglas and John Shepley of Ingersoll, opted to move Sensational Rocket back to the Grassroots for the third leg and the decision was clearly the right one as the colt posted a new personal best in his second win of the season.

Driver Tony Kerwood picked up a trio of wins on Quinte’s Grassroots program Monday. The Woodbine Racetrack regular made his first stop in Quinte’s winner’s circle with Twin B Mirage, who overcome Post 7 to score a half length victory in 1:58.3, besting favourite Tigerama and Tricky To Run.

Donna Toth trains Twin B Mirage for Frank Mancini of Hamilton and Colin Densley Burrows of St. Catherines. The Run The Table son established himself as a leader in the three-year-old pacing colt division, adding 50 more points to the 75 he earned with first and second-place finishes in the first two Grassroots events of the season.

Kerwood’s second victory came aboard Firstline Royal in the seventh race when he piloted the Armbro Operative son Firstline Royal to a wire-to-wire score in 1:58.3 for trainer Bill Cass and owner John Craig of North York. The duo bested favourite Kuche and longshot Mat Haze who were unable to mount a serious challenge.

Dream Rocket’s impressive 1:58 gate-to-wire win from Post 7 in the eighth race completed Kerwood’s driving hat trick and added $9,000 to the Pacific Rocket son’s $97,970 lifetime bankroll. Robert McIntosh trains Dream Rocket for partners Dwight Stacey of Mitchell and Paul Ysebaert of Mooretown. The win was the colt’s second in Grassroots action this season.

Can You Tieitinabo and Thomas Killean earned second and third-place honours behind Dream Rocket.

The other divisions went to Village Blitz in 1:57.2, Au Rumba in 1:58.3, Bringhomethemoney in 1:59.2 and J M Terror in 1:59.

The talented three-year-old pacing colts head to Hanover Raceway on Aug. 30 for their fourth Grassroots battle, while Ontario Sires Stakes excitement returns to Quinte Raceway Friday, Aug. 22 with Grassroots action for the two-year-old trotting colts.