Eight $25,000 divisions of the Oak Grove Early Sire Stakes were conducted at Oak Grove Racing, Gaming & Hotel on Monday, July 4. Reinsman Tony Hall collected three wins in sire stakes action and five of the eight favourites visited the winner’s circle. Also, no winners of the first legs returned to repeat this week.
Kentucky champion Dont Fence Me In (Andrew McCarthy) returned to her winning ways when the three-year-old pacing filly took a division in 1:52.2 over Ainthesamewithoutu (Tony Hall) and Jazzed (Andy Miller).
Trained by Tony Alagna, Dont Fence Me In is a daughter of Captaintreacherous-Mystery Game and is owned by Riverview Racing, Alagna Racing, Steven Head and Pryde Stables. The filly earned $345,782 last year and concluded her season with a third-place finish in the $359,450 Three Diamonds.
She kicked off her campaign this year with a victory in a non-winners event at Harrah’s Philadelphia, then was third in a $68,116 Pennsylvania Sire Stakes contest over the same oval before finishing seventh in her $35,000 Fan Hanover elimination at Woodbine Mohawk Park. Dont Fence Me In was then second to divisional leader Treacherous Dragon at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono in a $67,316 Pennsylvania Sire Stake prior to travelling to Kentucky.
Dont Fence Me In improved her record to 18-7-5-3 and her bankroll to $389,784. She paid $2.40 to win as the prohibitive favourite.
Lock Bridge (Dexter Dunn) surged past leader Captains Princess to record the second victory of her career in 1:52.4. Lookatmyrapsheet (Charlie Conrad) was second and Galinaruckus (Randy Crisler) was third in the other division for three-year-old pacing fillies.
Trained by Linda Toscano for Enviro Stables, South Mountain Stables, Camelot Stable and Westminster Road, Lock Bridge now sports a record of 10-2-5-2 and has earned $40,850. Each the filly’s wins have come this season after finishing third in four starts as a two-year-old.
Bred by Riverview Breeding, Visionary Breeding and Minisink Farms, Lock Bridge is by Captaintreacherous and out of Turnoffthelights making her a half-sibling to the $1 million earner Bedroomconfessions (sired by American Ideal). She is a full sibling to Military Secret ($148,061) and Commanding Officer ($186,247) and was a $90,000 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale purchase.
Sent off as the favourite, Lock Bridge paid $5 to win.
Summer Trader (Hall) provided his driver with the first of his three sire stakes wins on the day when the gelding defeated post-time favourite Vicious (McCarthy) in the first of two divisions for three-year-old male pacers. American Classic (Miller) was third. Trained by John Ackley, Summer Trader paced the mile in 1:50.3.
He now has a resume of 13-4-3-1 and has amassed $44,986 in purse money. Summer Trader is owned by CT Stable and was bred by Fred Kruszelnicki.
The gelded son of Sweet Lou-Cool Treasure posted the biggest upset on the card in the sire stakes divisions as he paid $24.80.
Terminator (Miller) won the second division for three-year-old male pacers by a nose over Wolftrax (John MacDonald) in 1:50.4. The post-time favourite, River Ness (Dunn), was third.
Trained by Ron Burke for owners Burke Racing Stables, Weaver Bruscemi, Knox Services and J&T Silva Stables, the son of Downbytheseaside-Crescent City boosted his bank account to $190,883 and his record to 16-4-4-4. He was bred by Diamond Creek Farm. Terminator was second to Gulf Shores, Ohio’s Two-Year-Old Pacing Colt of the Year, in last year’s $300,000 Ohio Sire Stakes final. Gulf Shores recently finished second in the $261,730 Messenger Pace.
Terminator paid $6.80 to win as the public’s second choice.
Blue Bayou Deo (MacDonald) lowered her previous lifetime mark by more than three seconds when she tripped the timer in 1:53 in the first division for three-year-old trotting fillies. The daughter of Trixton and Blue Yonder bested post-time favourite Pioneer As (Hall) in the stretch drive. Spendthemoneyhoney (Miller) was third.
Trained by Jason Robinson, Blue Bayou Deo is owned by Thestable Blue Bayou Deo. She was bred by Deo Volente Farms and T L P Stable.
Blue Bayou Deo now has a record of 18-4-3-5 with three of those victories this season. Her bankroll now stands at $72,280.
The filly paid $14.20 at the windows.
Grandeur (Hall) collected her second win of the season in as many starts in the second division for trotting fillies. Leaving from post position four, the daughter of Love You-Caress The Senses took the lead in the first quarter-mile and then sat in the pocket until the drive for the wire. Nikki The Nun (McCarthy) was second and Those Blues (Dunn) was third.
Grandeur, who completed the mile in 1:56, competes as a homebred for Carter Duer and is trained by Bob Stewart. The filly now has three wins from eight starts and has earned $29,750.
Grandeur paid $5 to her supporters as the favourite.
In the more eventful and swiftest division for male sophomore trotters, Ducasse (McCarthy) outlasted Ezra (Miller) by a neck in 1:53.4. After sitting third for three-quarters of a mile, the son of Father Patrick-Summer Savory made his move at the top of the stretch and reeled in Ezra, a first leg winner of this event. Iwont Back Down As (Hall) came along late to be third.
Owned by Brixton Medical Inc., Christina Takter, Hatfield Stables and Fair Island Farm, Ducasse is trained by Nancy Takter and was bred by Fair Island Farm. The gelding how has a record of 9-5-2-1 in 2022 after going winless in four starts as a freshman. One of those victories was in the $20,000 Bobby Weiss Series Consolation at Pocono on April 23. He has now earned $77,786.
Sent off as the favourite, Ducasse paid $5.40 to win.
Golden Wall As (Hall) rebounded from a third-place finish in the first sire stakes leg to score in 1:55.1. Trained by Anette Lorentzon, the Walner-Golden Door Lindy colt pulled away from Jetborne (Christian Lind) in the lane. Gaelihill (Trond Smedshammer) was third.
Owned by breeder ACL Stuteri AB with Kjell Johansson, Golden Wall As now has a record of 14-6-3-2. He has earned $92,405 and is now 5-3-1-1 this season.
Golden Wall As paid $4 as the public’s top choice at the windows.
With second round action now concluded, the $25,000 consolation and final for sophomores will be held on July 18. For freshmen, the $25,000 consolation and the $100,000 final will be on July 17.
The fourth and final legs for the four-year-old series will be conducted on July 12 with the $150,000 finals on July 19.
Oak Grove Racing, Gaming & Hotel features live harness racing on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. First post is 3 p.m. CDT
(With files from Kentucky Harness Assocation)