Father Patrick headlines Wellwood Final
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Once again Father Patrick stamped himself as the premier two-year-old trotting colt in North America with his victory in his $30,000 William Wellwood Memorial Trot elimination on Friday at Mohawk.
The top five finishers from each of the two eliminations advance to next week’s $365,000 final, a part of the Canadian Trotting Classic undercard.
Father Patrick, a son of Cantab Hall-Gala Dream, captured the Peter Haughton Memorial earlier this year and set a Canadian record last week in his division of the Champlain Stakes at the Campbellville oval.
Driven by Yannick Gingras, Father Patrick elected to race from behind as Odds On Amethyst (Dan Daley) quickly made the front ahead of Special Agent Man (Sylvain Filion) at the quarter in :28.
As the field of 10 marched towards the half, Special Agent Man pocket-pulled and took over command before the half in :58.1.
Credit Fashion (Doug McNair) began the first-over attack around the final turn, giving cover to Father Patrick. Special Agent Man continued to lead past three-quarters in 1:27.1, but Credit Fashion and Father Patrick were both stalking on the outside.
Down the stretch, Credit Fashion quickly took over command as Father Patrick got rough-gaited on Gingras.
Father Patrick then found his best stride and marched past Credit Fashion in deep stretch to score the 1:55.3 victory. Credit Fashion stayed for second with P L Hercules (Chris Christoforou) finishing third.
"He was fussy with his mouth in the last turn,” Gingras said. "That’s why he wasn’t trotting the best. He was loaded with trot down the stretch and I didn’t even kick the plugs. He’s by far the best two-year-old trotter I’ve ever sat behind.”
Trained by Jimmy Takter for Father Patrick Stable, Father Patrick now has $262,345 in earnings.. He paid $2.20 to win as the favorite.
In the other split, Harper Blue Chip and Sylvain Filion stopped the clock in 1:56.1, earning a spot in next week’s rich final.
The trotting son of Majestic Son, who captured his Champlain Stakes division last week, was in no hurry at the start as Massive Talent (Scott Zeron) made the front before the opening quarter in :28.
Massive Talent would then give up command as Massacaia (Doug McNair) found the front before giving way to Damfoolrmillionair (Randy Waples) before the mid-way point in :57.4.
Around the final turn, Il Sogno Dream (Paul MacDonell) began the first-over attack, giving live cover to Harper Blue Chip.
Damfoolrmillionair continued to lead past three-quarters in 1:27.3, but down the stretch Il Sogno Dream took over command, but couldn’t fend off a late charge from Harper Blue Chip, who scored the one and a half length victory. Damfoolrmillionair stayed for third.
"He’s coming along just the way we want,” trainer and co-owner, Mark Steacy said following the win. "We started him out slow and we didn’t want to throw him against the bear’s right way and I think it’s turned out to be the right move.”
Owned by Landmark 6 Racing Stable, David McDonald and David Reid, Harper Blue Chip increased his bankroll to $70,633. The youngster has crafted a 3-1-0 record from six starts this season. He paid $4 to win.
The $365,000 final, which takes place next Saturday, will line up as follows.
1) Massive Talent
2) Raise The Curtain
3) Harper Blue Chip
4) Father Patrick
5) Il Sogno Dream
6) P L Hercules
7) Odds On Amethyst
8) Credit Fashion
10) Muscle Midas