Canadian Pharoah won the third leg of the Robert Millbank Memorial Breeders Stake for two-year-old colts and geldings on Thursday, Oct. 19, bringing in a $15,000 purse. (Grace Kennedy photo)

‘Richest day of the year’ at Fraser Downs has big pay off for young horses

Hundreds of thousands of dollars given out at annual Breeders Classic Day

The Homestretch was packed at Fraser Downs racetrack on Saturday, Nov. 11, for the annual Breeders Classic Day. The excitement was high – the event is what Standardbred Canada calls the “richest day of harness racing in British Columbia,” with four $100,000 finals races in one action-packed afternoon.

“It was really exciting,” said BC Harness Racing executive director Carla Robin. “It’s the showcase of the year for our young horses, two to three years old, and the Homestretch was absolutely packed.”

Robin said it was a great day of racing, despite the less than favourable weather conditions. At one point, track operators had to halt the races and do track maintenance for 45 minutes, in order to ensure safe and fair racing. But the pause didn’t detract from the excitement, said Robin, and the last race of the night was just as nail-biting as the first three.

Rick Mowles’ J J J Stables won three of the four $100,000 finals, starting with the $100,000 Robert Millbank Memorial Breeders Take for two-year-old pacing colts and geldings. Driver Jim Marino steered Ron Bakardi to victory with a two-length score of 1:57 in the first final of the day. Canadian Pharaoh was close behind in second, with Machitoutofthepark for third.

Scardy Cat took off during the $100,000 Betty Millbank Memorial Breeders Stake for two-year-old pacing fillies, coming in with 1:58.4 after two favoured horses made breaks early on in the race.

The third race of the day featured Yoga Pants – the young one to watch.

“Our champions were just amazing young horses,” said Robin. “Yoga Pants was probably the best, she’s won 11 of her 12 season starts.”

Yoga Pants’ near-perfect lifetime record of 15 for 17 has already brought her a $327,409 bankroll.

Her race on Saturday afternoon, the $100,000 Mary Murphy Memorial Breeders Stake for three-year-old pacing fillies, was, as Robin recounts, “right down to the wire,” and hard fought.

Yoga Pants, and driver Jim Marino, made the lead before the turn and kept ahead.

Keys Please, who had been tucked into Yoga Pants’ pocket, made an attempt at the final turn, managing to pull close. Meanwhile, Tahuya Gameday, who had been pacing in third place, pulled forward and found room on Yoga Pants’ inside.

When the timer tripped, Yoga Pants came first, Tahuya Gameday in second, with Keys Please third.

The last race of the day, the $100,000 Robert Murphy Memorial Breeders Stake for three-year-old colts and geldings, was delayed by the weather, but well worth the wait.

Driver Serge Masse and Millbanks Bart had a three-length lead going into the final turn, but it was cut down when Ima Dude took his shot, surging forward from the pocket to close in on the pace-setting horse.

But Millbanks Bart kept forward and finished a length before Ima Dude, with Bakardi Gold coming third.

The final race finished off a day of fine competition, said Robin. “The horsemen — I have to commend them— they were excited not only for their own successes, but for the success of their fellow horsemen as well.”



editor@cloverdalereporter.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Mobility commission investigates how to charge Surrey motorists

32 Avenue and 152 Street considered ‘key congestion area’

VIDEO: Double-decker bus pilot in Langley gets rave reviews

The ceiling is a little low, but other than that, everyone seems to be a fan

Emaciated dog brought to Surrey shelter now healthy and up for adoption

Eclipse came into the Surrey Resource Animal Shelter last summer in skeletal, calloused condition

Comic Strippers return to Surrey’s Bell a year after ‘milestone’ show there

‘That was our biggest show ever,’ says Ken Lawson of male-stripper parody/improv-comedy production

Crash on Highway 10 in Surrey

DriveBC reports the crash happened eastbound, and that the left lane on highway is blocked

Solitary-confinement veto a chance to address mental health: advocate

B.C. Supreme Court made the landmark ruling Wednesday

Winter storm coming to B.C. this weekend

The bets are on as to how much snow the province will actually get in the coming days

B.C. civil rights group files complaint about RCMP arrest of man who later died

Dale Culver, a 35-year-old Indigenous man was arrested in Prince George last July

Lawyer says former B.C. government aide ‘barely guilty’ in ethnic vote scandal

Brian Bonney pleaded guilty to a breach of trust charge

Quite a few tears as homemade quilts distributed to residents of Ashcroft Reserve, Boston Flats affected by last summer’s fire

Quilters in B.C. and Alberta worked through the summer and fall to create more than 100 quilts.

Teachers’ union votes for non-confidence in school board

Lack of action after embattled trustee’s comments created unsafe workplace, Chilliwack teachers claim

Island Health: No need for alarm in wake of Victoria needle-prick incidents

Three incidents in a week prompts meeting between health authority, city service providers

B.C. coast loggers celebrate history, hope for improvement

Truck Loggers Association awaits B.C. NDP government’s new direction

Global Affairs aware of report of two Canadians kidnapped in Nigeria

The foreigners were heading south from Kafanchan to Abuja when they were ambushed around Kagarko

Most Read