Keith Gisser for The Breeders Crown
The field for Saturday’s $250,000 Breeders Crown Mare Trot is set after Emoticon Hanover and NF Happenstance won their respective eliminations earlier tonight. The next three finishers -- Ariana G, Ice Attraction and Celebrity Ruth from the first split and Barn Bella, Pink Pistol and Caprice Hill from the second elimination -- will join the winners, in the final, along with Broadway Donna from the second division, , the fifth place finisher with the highest earnings.
Second choice Emoticon Hanover, trained by Luc Blais, sat in the pocket behind Ariana G to win the first $25,000 elimination in 1:52.4, going by he favorite in deep stretch to win by 3/4 of a length in 1:52.4. Ariana G posted fractions of 27.4, 57 and 1:24.4 to set up the Emoticon Hanover win. Both are previous Breeders Crown champs.
Emoticon Hanover, a five-year-old bay mare by Kadabra from the Ken Warkentin mare Emmylou Who, posted her 20th career win and pushed her earnings past $1.24 million dollars for owners Determination of Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Bred by L. Wellwood, T. Aspden, A. Shunock and D Ingham, Emoticon Hanover was a $165,000 yearling purchase at the Standardbred Horse Sale in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
The second $25,000 division went to 9-1 NF Happenstance, who cleared to the front just before the 27 second first quarter pole and then took the field past fractions of 56.3 and 1:25.4 over the sloppy racing surface before facing a modest challenge from favored Dream Together, who eventually made a break in stride, wiping out the second choice, Broadway Donna and opening up the easy win for the Jack Parker Jr- driven NF Happenstance. Her winning margin was three and one quarter lengths. Broadway Bella survived an inquiry to finish second and 95-1 Pink Pistol finished third. Broadway Donna finished sixth in the race, but was placed fifth due to interference from Dream Together, and that placing means the millionaire daughter of Donato Hanover will also race next week in the final.
NF Happenstance is an eight-year-old bay daughter of SJ’s Caviar, from the Conway Hall mare Moira Hall. She is trained by Carole Jamieson-Parker for owner James D Moore III of North Carolina. The win was her 11th this year and 31st in 110 career starts as she pushed her lifetime earnings over $600,000. NF Happenstance was bred in Pennsylvania by John Huntgen.
The $250,000 Breeders Crown Mare Trot is one of twelve Breeders Crown Finals to be featured Saturday, October 28 at Mohegan Sun Pocono. First race post time is set at an early 5:30 PM Eastern.
Here is the draw for the $250,000 Breeders Crown Mare Trot Championship, to be held next Saturday at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono (* - elimination winner), followed by trainer and the driver in the elimination (a choice will have to be made):
1 – Broadway Donna – Jim Campbell – David Miller
2 – Barn Bella – trainer/driver Trond Smedshammer
3 – *NF Happenstance – Carol Jamieson-Parker – Jack Parker Jr.
4 – Caprice Hill – Chris Oakes – Brian Sears
5 – *Emoticon Hanover – Luc Blais – Daniel Dube
6 – Celebrity Ruth – trainer/driver Trond Smedshammer
7 – Pink Pistol – Peter Shody – Tim Tetrick
8 – Ariana G – Jimmy Takter – Yannick Gingras
9 – Ice Attraction – trainer/driver Ake Svanstedt