Fillies Impress In Grassroots

Published: July 13, 2021 12:39 am EDT

CL Sportsextreme started her Ontario Sires Stakes career with a win last July and the pacing filly kicked off her sophomore campaign in the same fashion with a 1:53.1 triumph at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Monday, July 12.

Starting from Post 4 in the first $22,850 Grassroots division, driver Chris Christoforou of Campbellville, ON eased CL Sportsextreme away from the starting gate and settled in at the back of the 11-horse field. As Miami Seelster led the field through fractions of :26.2, :56 and 1:25.1, CL Sportsextreme made steady progress forward at the back of the line of fillies marching up the outer lane. By the three-quarter pole CL Sportsextreme was just four lengths behind the leader and a :27.1 finishing kick propelled her down the stretch to a one-half length victory over fan favourite Amini. Docs Delight was five lengths back in third.

“She’s a very good filly and I’m very proud for her because she took a good lifetime mark and a very good last quarter. It’s good for a three-year-old filly like that,” said trainer Dany Fontaine. “She is not a Gold, she’s a Grassroots, but she’s a good Grassroots. You can say nothing bad about her, you know, because it’s only good. She’s a little princess.”

Fontaine, who makes his home in Terrebonne, QC, trains CL Sportsextreme for owner-breeder Ecuries C LeBlanc Inc of Saint-Eustache, QC. The win was CL Sportsextreme’s first of 2021 and her connections will be hoping the Sportswriter daughter has kicked off a three-race Grassroots win streak for the second straight year.

In the second division favourite Good Night Moon recorded her first Ontario Sires Stakes win with a 1:53.2 effort from Post 8 that saw her reel in pacesetter Shiatzu Seelster in the stretch. Shes A Comedian completed the top three.

“She’s a nice, big, strong mare. She has a lot of potential. She’s really starting to come into her own and once again James (MacDonald) gave her a great drive, and away she went,” said trainer Jason Ryan of the filly’s personal best effort. “She’s well-bred and very lightly raced so hopefully she just keeps going forward.”

Driver James MacDonald of Guelph engineered the Big Jim daughter’s second lifetime win for Guelph resident Ryan and owner 1187422 Ontario Inc. of Ottawa, ON. Raced twice at two, in the first two Gold Series events, Good Night Moon has amassed a record of two wins and three seconds in five starts since making her sophomore debut.

Voluptuous also made her first appearance in the Ontario Sires Stakes winner’s circle with a 1:53 effort from Post 6 in the third division. The Sunshine Beach daughter and driver Doug McNair took command before the half and sailed home to a two and three-quarter length victory over Celia Bayama and Sports Duchess.

“She’s getting stronger every start. She’s been raced lightly and is on the right track,” said Guelph resident McNair, who drove the fan favourite to her second win in three sophomore starts for US-based trainer Tony Alagna. “Tony (Alagna) always has live stock to drive; it’s nice to get to drive them when I can.”

M T Pockets Stables of Pompano Beach and Victoria Howard of Boca Raton, FL bred and own Sunshine Beach daughter Voluptuous, who made just three starts at two, all of them south of the border.

The final Grassroots division went to Game Of Shadows and Louis-Philippe Roy, who drafted along in the outer lane behind Western Wish and Doug McNair before sprinting down the stretch to a 1:52 personal best. Favourite Saulsbrook Olympia was three-quarters of a length back in second and pacesetter A Better Game held on for third.

“She’s a very fast filly for a little piece, but she can quit when she gets tired. Tonight she was full of pace when I tipped her off Doug’s (McNair) helmet down the lane,” said Roy. “Richard (Moreau) and Lynn Cameron, her caretaker, have been doing a great job with her since she had tie-up issues earlier in the season.”

Guelph resident Roy shares ownership of the Shadow Play daughter with 1876472 Ontario Inc of Guelph, ON, Michel Letarte of Boucherville and Jean Allaire of Montreal, QC. Richard Moreau of Puslinch, ON trains the filly, who was a Gold Series competitor at two.

Grassroots action continues at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Tuesday, July 13 with three $22,850 divisions for the two-year-old trotting fillies.


To view results for Monday's card of harness racing, click the following link: Monday Results – Woodbine Mohawk Park.