Sir A Scores In Jerome Memorial

Published: December 13, 2021 12:36 am EST

Driver Mike Healey sat a pocket trip with Sir A before pouncing and grinding through a stretch duel to land a narrow victory in the $20,000 Brian Jerome Memorial on Sunday (Dec. 13) at Rideau Carleton Raceway.

Starting from the second tier, Sir A tracked pylon-starter Blue Moose as he blasted off the wings for the front to a :27.1 first quarter and marched on a mission to a :55.4 half. The speed left the rest of the field chasing and strung out with the outer tier losing touch as the pace remained strong to three-quarters in 1:24.3. Drafting through the speed, Healey readied Sir A for a stretch-drive battle as Normand Beaudoin and Blue Moose refused to give in to the inside. The pair matched strides through the final eighth of a mile before Blue Moose gave an inch to Sir A as he crossed the beam a neck better in a 1:55.2 mile. Jimmy Gagnon finished third with Task Bar Hanover while St Lads Captain and Darcy Clancy took fourth.

A three-year-old gelding by Control The Moment, Sir A won his second race from 29 starts this season and his fifth from 36 overall, pushing his earnings to $42,757. He paid $7.80 to win while giving trainer John MacMillan his second win of three on the evening, with his other two coming with Peter Poole ($3.90) and Dylans Bank ($3.90).

The victory with Sir A also secured the Coville Cup title for Mike Healey, whose victory gave him 10,000 points to place him first on the leaderboard with 24,836. Darcy Clancy finished second with 16,106, Daniel St. Pierre took third with 16,040 and Norm Beaudoin – with the second-place finish – grabbed fourth with 15,029.

“I’m very happy, very pleased,” Healey said after the race and being awarded the Coville Cup. “[Blue Moose] is a nice horse, and when I pulled a little early – because I saw the fast half that Norm had done – he actually came back, the one. So I got a little sweaty for a moment, but luckily I had a nice horse and John [MacMillan] had the horse ready tonight. I think [the tournament’s] awesome. I think the people love to have little driver’s competitions like that. I think we should probably have some more competitions in the future [and] maybe for the top-10 and second-10 drivers. It was one of the nicest experiences in harness racing that I’ve had so far.”

The final standings for the Coville Cup are listed below:

1st: Mike Healey – 3 wins | 2 seconds | 1 third | 24,836 points
2nd: Darcy Clancy – 2 wins | 1 second | 2 thirds | 16,106 points
3rd: Daniel St. Pierre – 3 wins | 0 seconds | 1 third | 16,040 points
4th: Normand Beaudoin – 2 wins | 1 second | 0 thirds | 15,029 points
5th: William Roy – 2 wins | 2 seconds | 1 third | 14,665 points
6th: Jimmy Gagnon – 2 wins | 0 seconds | 3 thirds | 14,646 points
7th: Bernard Lavigne – 2 wins | 0 seconds | 0 thirds | 12,304 points
8th: Daniel Laflamme – 1 win | 2 seconds | 0 thirds | 11,043 points
9th: Michael Armstrong – 1 win | 2 seconds | 0 thirds | 9,780 points

Earlier in the card, The Light Speed rallied from last to deliver as the odds-on choice in the $9,200 Preferred Handicap Pace.

Trainer/driver Guy Gagnon floated from the outermost post in the sextet to race last by a :27.1 first quarter. Racing off the pegs, The Light Speed rushed uncovered after pacesetter The Regulator into a :56.2 half to challenge for and then grab the lead into the backside. The three-year-old Moon Beam gelding coasted to three-quarters in 1:24 and strolled into the lane to finish a length better than Vanilla Malted, who tracked The Light Speed’s sweeping move to take second. Shadow Margeaux finished third.

A homebred for Michel Nolette, The Light Speed won his 13th race from 23 starts this season and his 15th from 34 overall, pushing his earnings to $98,009. He paid $3.80 to win.

The evening concluded with a 1:57.1 victory in the $9,200 Preferred Handicap Trot by Ripped And Ready. The four-year-old Muscle Mass stallion caught cover after a :28.1 first quarter from parked-out favourite Crossfit, who pressed forward after tempo-setter Seeyou Men to a :58.4 half. With that pair battling for the lead to three-quarters in 1:27.2, Ripped And Ready prepared to spring off cover around the final turn, where he launched to the front and trotted home a one-length winner over Black Tie Bash. Seeyou Men held third while Fit Bitt took fourth and Crossfit faded to fifth.

Owned by Dr. Ruth Irving, Ripped And Ready won his fifth race from 19 starts this season and his 12th from 40 overall, pushing his earnings to $155,141. Pascal Berube drove the $7 winner for trainer Thierry Vandenplas.

To view Sunday's harness racing results, click on the following link: Sunday Results - Rideau Carleton Raceway.