The very first race on the harness racing program set the tone of action at the Hippodrome 3R Tuesday evening as it took the photo finish camera to declare the winner of the first of four $30,000 finals for the Quebec-Bred Series.
The first race featured the final for four- and five-year-old pacing mares and it turned out to be exciting battle between two-time former champion, HP Sissy and Art De Gagnee.
Race favourite Skyfall Sena (Guy Gagnon) was first on the lead but Stephane Brosseau wanted control of the race with HP Sissy and took over after a :27.3 opening quarter mile.
Then before the half mile in :57, driver Pierre Luc Roy came first-over with Art De Gagnee and pushed HP Sissy for control, but could not pass her by as they raced head and head past the three-quarters in 1:25.4.
Art De Gagnee then stuck a head out in front at the top of the stretch, but HP Sissy dug in some more for Brosseau, but it was not good enough as Roy kept after Art De Gagnee, who won the photo finish by a head in 1:56. Skyfall Sena was third.
It was a lifetime mark for Art De Gagnee, a five-year-old mare by Shadow Play, owned and trained by Cassandra Lecourt of Ste-Victoire De Sorel. She was bred by Guy Corbeil of Mirabel and paid $15.80 to win.
The sixth race $30,000 final for the trotting mares saw Eau Naturelle and trainer/driver Simon Delisle go right to the front as expected, but a costly break by Lucky Promisses allowed race favourite Y S Suzanne and driver Guy Gagnon to get the two-hole trip.
They raced Indian-style past the half and then in the backstretch, Gagnon made his move with Y S Suzanne and came first-over but could not pass by a determined Eau Naturelle as they raced head and head until mid-stretch when Y S Suzanne took over and won by one and one-quarter lengths in 1:59.3. Eau Naturelle was second with Vanilla Star (Yves St Jacques) third.
It was the second Championship Final for Y S Suzanne, who also won at age two. She is a five-year-old mare Angus Hall, co-owned and trained by Blake Curran with by Jason Jamieson of Perth, ON. She paid $2.40 to win.
Wildriverbumblebee made it three straight championships as he ended up being an easy winner in the seventh race final for the pacing horses.
It was Majo Lou Beka an driver Jonathan Lachance that put on a speed show as they left from the rail and opened up on the field immediately, going to the opening quarter mile in :26.4 and then to the half mile in :55.1.
Dance With Joe and driver Daniel Dulude and troubles leaving and was in second place but quit after the half mile and that was when Guy Gagnon got Wildriverbumblebee on the move on the outside.
They caught up with Major Lou Beka at the three-quarters in 1:24.1 and on the final turn Wildriverbumblebee took command for Gagnon and went on to win by two and one-quarter lengths in 1:55.
HP Patriote (Pascal Berube) was second with C L Sportaction (Brosseau) third.
It was the second straight win for Wildriverbumblebee. The four-year-old stallion by Sportswriter is trained by Francis Richard and was bred and is owned by Dr. John Bradbury of Cookshire-Eaton. He paid $3.30 to win.
The last $30,000 final was the eight race for the trotting horses and it was quite a battle from the start.
Both Holiday Party (Pascal Berube) and Kinnder Dangerous (Justin Filion) wanted the lead and by the opening quarter mile in :27.4, Filion took back into the two-hole with Kinnder Dangerous.
Then on the second turn, Pierre Luc Roy started Capteur De Reve up on the outside and they started working their way to the front at the half mile in :58.2. Then by the three-quarters in 1:28, Capteur De Reve was able to collar Holiday Party as Filion and Kinnder Dangerous tried coming three-wide on the final turn.
As they came down the stretch, Capteur De Reve proved to be the strong horse and went on to win by one and one-quarter lengths in 1:59.4. Sometimes When (Guy Gagnon) closed well to be second with Holiday Party third.
It was the second straight Championship for Capteur De Reve, who won last year at age three. The four-year-old son of Muscle Mass is trained by Maxime Velaye and was bred and is owned by Ecurie Provoquante of Mirabel. He paid $4.80 to win.
There were three divisions of the third round of the Breeders Cup Series for three-year-old trotters Tuesday evening.
The first colt division was the second race and saw Yankee Photo and driver Pascal Berube take early control from Sir Chopin (Simon Delisle) after the opening quarter mile in :29.4.
From that point on Yankee Photo wired the field, winning by two and one-quarter lengths in 2:02.1. Sir Chopin was second with Johnnys Revenge (David Pilon) third.
It was the second win this season for Yankee Photo. The colt by Muscle Yankee is trained by Gerald Woodberry and was bred and is owned by Mario Gourgee of Stanbridge East and paid $3.90 to win.
The second division, fifth race, belonged to SG Goliath King and driver Sylvain Grenier, who led from start to finish by two and one-quarter lengths in 2:03.
SOS Irresistable (Daniel Laflamme) tried coming first-over at the opening quarter mile and was parked out the entire mile but still held on for second place. Nobodynosjustice (Guy Gagnon) looped the field three-wide at the three-quarters and around the final turn but could not keep the momentum going and finished third.
It was the second straight win and third victory on the year for SG Goliath King. The son of Lucky Feel was bred and is owned and trained by Grenier of Saint-Rene and paid $3.40 to win.
The lone filly division in the third race saw race favourite Kinnder Prediction (Justin Filion) go off-stride at the start and that left Montanaalaska and driver Guy Gagnon all alone to lead the field with ease and win by five and three-quarter lengths in 2:02.4. Precieuse CC (Claude Beausoleil) was second with Stand For Justice (Brosseau) third.
It was a lifetime mark and first career victory for the daughter of Angus Hall. She is trained by Alain Martin for owner Michel Grenier of Gatineau, paying $4.00 to win.
In the Horse Power Challenge Race, featuring Grand Prix auto drivers Andrew Ranger vs LP (Louis-Philippe) Dumoulin in double-seater jogging carts, it was Quebec native Andrew Ranger with harness racing coach Simon Allard, beating LP Dumoulin and coach Stephane Brosseau by one length in 2:31.2.
Live racing resumes on Tuesday with the second round of the Future Stars Pacing Series for two-year-olds. Also, on Tuesday is the draw for the $200,000 Prix D’Ete at H3R on Sunday, August 19. The post draw will be done live Tuesday in the winner’s circle.
Post time Tuesday is 6:30 p.m.
For more information and a free program for Tuesday, visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com.
(Quebec Jockey Club)