Sent the 1-5 favourite, National Debt delivered a dominant victory in winning the $9,200 Preferred Pace on Sunday (Dec. 5) at Rideau Carleton Raceway.
Driver Pascal Berube placed the 10-year-old Allamerican Native stallion fourth off the wings from his assigned outer post while Racemup led the field through the snow to a :27.1 first quarter. Vanilla Malted then circled from the pocket to the point while Berube slid National Debt off the pegs and rolled uncovered after the leader into a :57 half and stayed at the pacesetter’s side as the tempo quickened up the backstretch to three-quarters in 1:25.2. National Debt continued to press Vanilla Malted to the final turn before overpowering him at the top of the stretch and strolling to a 1-3/4-length victory. Racemup held third and Stonebridge Beach finished fourth.
Trained by Yves Tessier for owner Francois Morin, National Debt won his 14th race from 26 starts this season and his 80th from 224 overall, pushing his earnings to $684,543. He paid $2.40 to win.
As the snow squall deepened into the night, Black Tie Bash emerged victorious in the co-featured $9,200 Preferred Handicap Trot. The Isabelle Darveau trainee came from off the speed following opening splits of :28.4 and :59.1 to sit third over as the field exited visibility to three-quarters in 1:29.1. When they came back into vision, Black Tie Bash drew to equal terms with favourite Ripped And Ready, who grabbed the lead around the final turn. But Black Tie Bash battled with Ripped And Ready through the lane, eventually edging three-quarter lengths in front to stop the clock in 1:59. Crossfit finished third and Fit Bitt took fourth.
A three-year-old gelding by Chapter Seven, Black Tie Bash won his third race from 24 starts this season and his fifth from 33 overall, pushing his earnings to $66,243. Owner Robert Shepherd drove the $11.60 winner.
The ninth preliminary for the Coville Cup also went to post earlier on the Sunday card. Normand Beaudoin steered Tico Time to a gate-to-wire victory in the first division, holding off pocket-sitter Uno Cincuenta and driver Mike Healey by a half length in a 1:58.3 mile. Pantheon Seelster swung off a covered trip to take third as the favourite with driver Drew Smyth while Yankee Up and Andrew Moore finished fourth.
Division two of the Coville Cup went to Daniel St. Pierre, who made a middle-move for the front past the half with Blue Moose to post a 2-3/4-length win in 1:57.3 over Keystone Prestige and Michael Armstrong. Jimmy Gagnon finished third with Mistys Delight, another four lengths behind, with another four lengths back to Josh Miller and Thats Some Plan in fourth.
After nine weeks of competition, the nine drivers from the Coville Cup who qualified for the $20,000 Brian Jerome Memorial are: Daniel St. Pierre, Mike Healey, William Roy, Darcy Clancy, Jimmy Gagnon, Bernard Lavigne, Dan Laflamme, Normand Beaudoin and Michael Armstrong. That race will go as part of the pari-mutuel card at Rideau Carleton next Sunday (Dec. 12).
To view Sunday’s harness racing results, click on the following link: Sunday Results – Rideau Carleton Raceway.