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2FT Kadabra Queen 1:59 Ontario Gold winner

July 07, 2017

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Mohawk Racetrack hosted the first two-year-old event of the Ontario Sires Stakes season on Thursday, July 6 and 32 freshman trotting fillies invaded the Campbellville oval for two Grassroots and two Gold Series divisions.

Local filly Kadabra Queen kicked off the trotting fillies Gold Series season with a 1:59 victory over fan favorite Illusioneesta and Zorgwijk Sophia. Starting from post 3, Kadabra Queen landed behind favorite Illusioneesta, watching a :29.3 quarter from second and a 1:00.3 from third, and then followed that filly up the outside heading for the 1:30.3 three-quarters. Coming off the final turn driver Scott Coulter asked Kadabra Queen for another gear and the daughter of Kadabra and Queen Street powered past Illusioneesta to a one-length victory.

Brantford resident Coulter piloted the filly to the win for trainer Chad Milner of Campbellville, co-owner and breeder Harness Horsepower Inc. of Campbellville and co-owner Frank Monte of Markham, ON. It was the second time Coulter had driven Kadabra Queen and he was even more impressed than he had been in her June 27 debut at Georgian Downs, where she finished a closing third.

"They brought her there (Georgian Downs) just to give her the start and she was so well mannered and she finished in hand there, and he (Milner) said, you know what, she's kind of surprising me that she's got as much trot late as she does and I said, she felt fantastic. So he said, I'm going to try her in the Gold, and I said, well why not," said Coulter with a laugh. "And then here we are."

Through Kadabra Queen's first two starts Coulter has been most impressed with her manners and her intelligence, two qualities that are essential for young trotters.

"Tonight, the same thing, she did what she had to do; she showed up, she put her head down, and she's so very smart and that makes her really, really useful," said the reinsman. "She's a pleasure to drive."

The other $96,400 Gold Series division went to Sorceress Seelster, who posted the fastest mile of the four freshman trotting filly events. The daughter of Holiday Road and Self Desire delivered an impressive effort, sprinting away from Post 4 to a :27.4 opening quarter, then backing things off en route to a :59.4 half, sitting in the pocket behind Gotta Pay To Play to a 1:29.4 three-quarters and then carving through a narrow opening to reel in her peers and post a two-length victory in 1:58.4. Miss Mimi finished second and Shamrock Shaker was third.

Trevor Henry of Arthur piloted the fan favorite to the win for owner-trainer Jack Wray of London and his partner Thomas Wray of Schomberg, ON, who offered up $13,000 for the filly at last fall's Forest City Yearling Sale. Henry, one of the top drivers at Mohawk and a two-time winner of the Lampman Cup as the leading reinsman on the Ontario Sires Stakes circuit, is expecting a strong season from Sorceress Seelster.

"She was real hot off the gate tonight, she come out of there pretty fast. Once she made front, then she was fine," Henry said from the winner's circle. "I didn't really want to cut it with her because she could get hot, you know, so when Wayne (Henry and Gotta Pay To Play) came I was happy just to cover her up for a bit because I didn't want to rush her too much.

"Once she got room she was gone," Henry continued. "She's a nice filly; she's going to be all right."

Sorceress Seelster and her Gold Series peers will make their second start back at Mohawk on July 25.

Henry also scored a Grassroots win, going gate-to-wire with Christmas Candy in the second $18,450 division. The daughter of Angus Hall and Solange Kosmos hit the wire three-quarters of a length ahead of Warrawee Trip and favourite Ladys Intuition in 2:02.1.

Ian Downey conditions Christmas Candy for owner-breeder SSG Stables of North Boston, NY.

The first two-year-old trophy of the 2017 season went to P L Layla, who took control of the first Grassroots division before the half-way marker and never looked back, cruising home a two and one-half length winner in 1:59.4. Dalliance Seelster finished second and fan favorite Kant Afford It was third.

Randy Waples crafted the winning trip for trainer Matthew Dupuis and owner-breeders Prince Lee Acres.

The Grassroots fillies will make their second start on July 16 at Georgian Downs.

Two-year-old action continues at Mohawk Racetrack on Friday, July 7 with two $97,200 Gold Series divisions for the pacing colts. The colts will make their Ontario Sires Stakes debuts in Races 4 and 8. Post time for Friday's program is 7:30 pm. (Ontario Sires Stakes)

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