Harness racing driver Stephane Gendron reached a major milestone in his career, scoring his 4,000th career win in the sixth race at the Hippodrome 3R Tuesday evening.
Gendron, 47, of Quebec City, first started driving professionally back in 1989, scoring just 11 wins that first season.
His milestone victory came aboard Y S Suzanne in a division of the second round of the $100,000 Quebec-Bred Series for four and five-year-old trotters.
The sixth race first saw Double Chance and driver Jocelyn Gendron shoot to the early lead from post two, but that lead was short lived by the opening quarter mile as Stephane Gendron had Y S Suzanne, the 2/5 morning line favourite, on the move and soon on the lead.
From that point, Y S Suzanne and Gendron held command, despite a game first-over effort after the half mile marker and through the backstretch by Y A Jailhouse Jody (Guy Gagnon).
Coming down the stretch, Gendron and Y S Suzanne were able to hold on to the finish wire, winning by a quarter of a length in 2:01.1 over a late closing Artemis Duharas (Raymond Gingras) with Double Chance third.
Owned and trained by Carl Duguay, it was the fourth straight win and fifth victory on the year for Y S Suzanne. The four-year-old mare by Angus Hall paid $2.80 to win.
“I was a little worried as my mare she was not feeling so strong tonight as she usually is,” Gendron explained. “I thought that maybe the other mare (Artemis Duharas) that she beat me, but we were ok.
“I am very happy winning my 4,000th race,” Gendron said. “It means a lot to me. I do not drive regular around the circuit anymore. I pretty much stay at the Hippodrome 3R, but it is nice to have achieved so many wins. Feels really good.”
For his career, Stephane Gendron has started in 22,518 races with 4,000 wins, 3,299 second place and 2,876 third place finishes. The horses he has driven have won $13,602,638.
An upset took place in the fourth race Quebec-Bred Series for horses as the 1-9 favourite and track record holder, Wildwild Men, went off-stride at the start of the race.
His stablemate and full brother, Seeyou Men (Guy Gagnon) took the early lead with KFB Amigo Cool (Stephane Brosseau) sitting second until the half mile when 5-1 Holiday Party and driver Pascal Berube came first-over to challenge and take commend in the backstretch.
Wildwild Men and driver Robert Shepherd recovered and caught the field, but it was too late as Holiday Party held on to win by a half-length with Wildwild Men second and KFB Amigo Cool third. The time of the one mile race was 1:59.1.
For Holiday Party, a $105,000 winner last year at age three, who set the track record for his age and gait at H3R in being the Sire Stakes Champion, it was his first win in 2017 after three starts.
Sired by Holiday Road, Holiday Party is trained by Dany Fontaine for the Gaetan Bono Stable of Montreal. He paid $12.40 to win.
Driver Pascal Berube had the hot hands Tuesday, winning three races on the program. Racetrack superintendent at H3R, Sylvain Blais, who had the track surface in prime shape Sunday, saw three horses take lifetime marks also on Tuesday’s program.
Next Sunday, the Quebec Jockey Club will host the $30,000 finals of the Quebec-Bred Series for four and five-year-old pacing mares and horses.
For more information, visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com.
(Quebec Jockey Club)
To view results for Tuesday's card of harness racing, click the following link: Tuesday Results – Hippodrome 3R.