Trainer Ian Moore told harnessracing.com that he believes the 2008 Little Brown Jug and Adios winner Shadow Play is ready for his 4-year-old debut following an impressive workout mile and that the pacer will make his debut Sunday at Mohawk. Sunday\'s race comes eight days after the pacer put in a spectacular official workout in 1:53.4 at Charlottetown Driving Park in Prince Edward Island.
Moore said he trained the 4-year-old son of The Panderosa over his farm track in Winsloe, PEI on Tuesday, April 28, in 1:55. He then brought the horse to Charlottetown Saturday, May 2, and had an official workout before a large crowd midway through the race card. He shipped Shadow Play to Baycairn Training Center near Mohawk the following day, arriving at 3 a.m. on Monday.
“I think the horse is ready to race off that workout—it was a pretty good mile considering the track was off a tick,\" said Moore. “I’ve been training him alone most all spring and I think he’s getting tired of that. He’s nice and solid and in excellent shape.”
Shadow Play drew post five in the eight-horse $35,000(C) Open and is listed as the 4-5 morning line choice. Because regular driver David Miller has prior committments that afternoon at the Meadowlands, Moore has enlisted the services of driver Paul MacDonell for Shadow Play\'s 2009 debut.
Over the winter, Moore and his partners, Serge Savard and Ron and Gail McLellan’s RG McGroup Ltd., sold an interest in the $1.2-million winner Shadow Play to Blue Chip Bloodstock Moore said he is optimistic Shadow Play can make the transition from three to four before the world champion is retired to stallion duty in New York at Blue Chip Farms.
“I realize it’s a difficult transition for some horses from 3 year olds to 4 year olds…so I hope he can compete at that level and be one of the top aged horses,” said Moore. “That’s what we’re optimistic about and I guess we’ll find out in the next few weeks.”
Moore said Shadow Play’s schedule calls for him to race in Ontario for the first six weeks before starts at the Meadowlands and Harrah’s Chester.
“We’ve paid him up into all the half-mile races we can because I think he’s special on a smaller track,” said Moore. “He’s pretty much paid into everything he can be. There are about 12 weeks in a row of racing; it’s pretty concentrated. I doubt if he’ll do that…but one that has to go at that level it’s difficult to go like that since they’re not machines.”