2FP Alicorn wins another Ontario Gold
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Two-year-old pacing filly Alicorn wrapped up the Gold Series regular season on Monday evening with another impressive effort over the Woodbine Mohawk Park oval, matching her Ontario Sires Stakes record with a spectacular late sprint.
Lining up at post 5 in the six-filly field, driver Louis-Philippe Roy opted to ease Alicorn away from the gate and the heavy favorites were sitting fifth when Rose Run Vantage reached the :26.3 quarter. The fillies carried on in single file behind Rose Run Vantage to the :55.3 half, but heading into the final turn Roy tipped Alicorn into the outer lane. Temagami Seelster provided a brief windbreak for Alicorn as Rose Run Vantage paced by the 1:23.3 three-quarters, but Roy was soon showing his charge an open lane to the wire. Once Alicorn dropped into gear she drew away to a two and one-half length victory in 1:50.3, reeling off a :26 final quarter. Pocket-sitter Keystone Kalimba claimed the runner-up share of the $104,800 purse and Rose Run Vantage was third.
“He said, ‘I didn’t plan on racing her that way, but behind the gate everyone was leaving out so I just sat back and waited’,” said trainer Chantal Mitchell of her post-race conversation with Roy. “I told him I was a little worried because he was waiting on the other horse, and the other horse that was in front of us wasn’t really advancing. I said, ‘I thought we were just too far, there was just too much ground to make up,’ and he said, ‘I wasn’t worried’.”
Roy’s confidence in the Bettors Delight filly is more than warranted. Monday’s win was her third in Gold Series action and her sixth in 10 freshman starts. She has only been worse than second on one occasion — a fourth-place result in the July 8 Gold Series opener at Woodbine Mohawk Park where she paced home in :26.1.
“I really don’t have very many words for it all,” said Mitchell, who trains Alicorn for Windermere Stable LLC of New York, NY and Robert Muscara of Ivyland, PA. “She just has that desire. She wants to do it, she wants to beat everybody.”
Ironically, Mitchell said that Alicorn’s fierce attitude is reserved for the racetrack. At home with her paddock-mate Windy, the division point leader plays a solid second fiddle.
“She has a turn out buddy and that filly runs this filly. She’s the boss of her. She chases her around the field, and she makes her do everything, she is the boss of her,” said the Hamilton, ON resident. “One of the owners said, ‘Windy is the boss of Alicorn, and Alicorn’s the boss of everybody else’.”
So long as she remains healthy and happy Alicorn will make her next start in the $225,000 Super Final at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Oct. 12 and then turn her attention to the Breeders Crown eliminations at the Campbellville oval on Oct. 18.
“I’ll likely just train her up a bit on Tuesday next week (Oct. 8) and keep an eye on her, make sure she’s healthy and she’s eating well, and as long as she looks as bright as she does every other day then we’ll just keep going,” said Mitchell. “She doesn’t look any different from the day she qualified to now. It doesn’t look like she’s dropped a pound and, if anything, she’s sharper.”
The top 10 point earners from the regular season will compete in the Oct. 12 Super Final and Betalady gave herself a chance to join them with a win in the second $105,600 division.
Starting from Post 2, Betalady left smartly and found herself behind pacesetter All Day Sunshine as that filly reeled off a :26.2 quarter. Betalady continued to sit behind the pacesetter through the :55.3 half and 1:22.3 three-quarters and was able to sneak up the inside late in the stretch for a head victory over Free Flyin Ticket and Off The Press. The 1:52.2 clocking was a personal best for Betalady, who was driven to the win by Jody Jamieson.
“I had the opportunity to drive her for the first time in the Champlain a couple of weeks ago (Sept. 7). She impressed me then with a third and I haven’t had the chance to drive her again until tonight,” said the Moffat, ON resident. “The trip wasn’t the same as I planned for, but it worked out in the very end. But it took right up until the wire to work out.”
It was the first Gold win for Betalady, who moved from twenty-sixth in the point standings to twelfth. If all of the fillies ahead of her enter the Super Final the Bettors Delight daughter will be the second also eligible in the season finale, but if any opt not to enter she could find herself with a shot at the $225,000.
Susanne Kerwood trains Betalady for owner-breeders M And L Of Delaware LLC of Wilmington, DE.
Ontario Sires Stakes action continues at Woodbine Mohawk Park on Tuesday, Oct. 1 with the final regular season Gold Series event for the two-year-old trotting colts and geldings. The program gets under way at 7:10 pm and the trotters will duel in Races 3 and 8. (Ontario Sires Stakes)