News ArchivesArchives for August '03
Just Iffy looking for wild card win on home turf
HANOVER, ON — Hanover Raceway fans are in for an exceptional evening of Ontario Sires Stakes action this Saturday when the program’s marquee division, the three-year-old pacing colts, arrive for their Grassroots wild card.
Open to both Grassroots and Gold Series competitors, Saturday’s event has drawn an impressive line-up of top colts, including local favourite Just Iffy who boasts a record of six wins, two seconds and one third in 11 starts this season and heads into Saturday’s contest off a 1:56 victory at Hanover on Aug. 20.
“He’s surprised us, we’re quite happy with him,” says trainer Vicki Gregg. “He’s been a lot of fun this summer.”
The Paisley resident and her sister and brother-in-law Beth and Steven Gregg of Cargill were not expecting much from the Village Jiffy son after watching his half-sister Whatchagonnabegirl struggle through her three and four-year-old seasons, earning just $21,667.
“I trained his sister and she wasn’t very good. He has a lot of brothers that raced, but I didn’t train them, I sold them,” says Gregg. “So I was taking it kind of easy on him.”
Without the physical development necessary to compete as a two-year-old, Just Iffy did not make his racing debut until this spring, but the pacer made his owners sit up and take notice when he captured his second lifetime start with a 2:04.4 effort at Elmira Raceway on May 23. Another victory at Hanover on June 7 in 2:00.1 and a sweep of the elimination and Final of the Central Huron Pacing Series at Clinton Raceway June 22 and 29 convinced the Gregg’s the gelding was legitimate.
A runner-up finish in a 1:51.1 mile at Woodbine Racetrack on July 21 earned Just Iffy a spot in the Aug. 2 Gold Eliminations at the Rexdale oval where he finished a respectable fifth, just two and a half lengths behind the winner. The gelding’s performance in Saturday’s skirmish will help his owners decide whether to remain in the Grassroots for the next two events, or head back into the Gold Series fray.
“We’ll see how things go on Saturday. I don’t think we can make the Semifinal of the Grassroots now, he’d have to win them all,” notes Gregg, whose operation is based at Hanover Raceway. “Hopefully he’ll race good for us Saturday night and then we’ll make a decision.”
Bruce Richardson will drive Just Iffy on Saturday, sending the colt after his seventh win from Post 4 in the fourth race and Gregg expects the young reinsman will have his eye on Gold Series regular Jimmy Crack Cohen from Post 2.
Hanover Raceway’s first race gets under way at 7:20 pm on Saturday, with the three-year-old pacing colts taking aim on the track’s 1:55 speed record in Races 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10 and 11.