With 10 horses entering for the prestigious $730,000 Maple Leaf Trot, set for July 21 at Mohawk Racetrack, no eliminations will be required for the 2012 edition of the classic. The field includes all of the top free-for-allers, except for defending champion San Pail, who is recovering from an injury.
Daylon Magician, last year's 3-year-old trotting colt of the year in Canada, couldn't be coming into the rich event any better after he lowered his own track and Canadian record to 1:52 flat with a world record-equaling effort in the $162,000 Masters Series final for older trotters at Georgian Downs.
"He's as good as he's ever been,” said trainer/driver Jack Moiseyev. "He raced terrific at Georgian (Downs) the other night and he had lots left in the tank. He's peaking at the right time, which is nice to see.”
The 4-year-old son of Kadabra-Daylon Marvel, who won the $1-million Canadian Trotting Classic as a sophomore, has banked $1,457,425 in earnings for owner/breeder Daylon Farms.
While Moiseyev has been the regular pilot behind the 18-time winner throughout his entire career, he only began conditioning the bay four starts ago. "Dave (Lemon of Daylon Farms) approached me a little while back and asked me if he could leave the horse with me and of course I said yes,” Moiseyev explained. "Dave said that he has a few other young horses that he has to travel with this summer, so it would be easier this way. He did an absolutely amazing job with this horse all last year and this year. He made over $1 million last season and to keep a horse on top for that long is top notch. It was terrific management.”
But the veteran reinman knows never to underestimate the other competitors. "Any time you're in a race like this, you always have to be worried about your competition,” stated Moiseyev, who has over 9,500 driving wins to his credit. "Chapter Seven has been racing unbelievably well and there are a few others too, but we're coming into the race confident in our horse. I know what he's capable of.”
Moiseyev, who is stabled along the Mohawk backstretch, admits that Daylon Magician is no well-kept secret when he's going about his daily routine.
"Every time someone comes into the barn, they immediately know it's him,” Moiseyev said with a chuckle. "He's got that presence about him. He's a big horse with a terrific gait. They know it's him out there on the track.”
The 2012 Maple Leaf Trot horses are listed alphabetically:
Hot Shot Blue Chip