The ninth race on Friday night at Fraser Downs was again proof why they play the game or run the race before they declare a winner.
The heavy favorite, Rollin Deep, made a break in stride at the start of the race and took herself out of contention. Rollin Deep was only making her seventh lifetime start and it looked like she got a little excited when Serge Masse asked her to leave the gate.
Driver/trainer Bill Davis took advantage of the mistake with second betting choice, Terrormissu, to win the $15,000 final of the Penny Bath Memorial stake for J J J Stables. The owner and driver team also combined for two other victories on the race card.
The race within the race is really heating up
Only six race days remain to see who qualifies and will represent B.C. in the Standardbred Canada Western Region Drivers Championship to be held at Fraser Downs April 26. Bill Davis and Jim Marino have already locked up the top two spots but it looks like we are down to three drivers battling for two spots (hopefully depending on the number of horses entered for April 26): John Chappell (46 wins), Dave Hudon (45 wins) and Scott Knight (44 wins). The top drivers from the Western region go to Charlottetown, PEI, for the Canadian Championship in August and the winner of that goes to represent Canada at the worlds in early 2015.
The veteran 9-year-old, Western Baron, just keeps on going, with eight starts, and eight wins in 2014, and what is even more amazing is the fact he won another race this weekend, in the fastest time of his life, 1.54.2.
Congratulations to owner/trainer/driver Jim Marino on winning the $15,000 final of the Keith Linton Memorial stake race with Premium Stock. Jim and partner, Cam Gardner, were met in the winners circle by many friends of Keith Linton. It has been said that Keith was one of the best and craftiest drivers ever to race in Cloverdale, many top drivers learned a lot of hard lessons by watching Keith outsmart them.
Racing resumes at Fraser Downs this Friday (at 7 p.m.) and Sunday (12:45 p.m.)
– Jackson Wittup is the executive director of Harness Racing B.C.