Milton, ON — Capt Midnight became harness racing’s first sub-1:50 2-year-old of 2019 with a thrilling 1:49.4 victory in Monday’s (Aug. 12) Dream Maker Series final at Woodbine Mohawk Park.
The Dream Maker final featured a field of six rookie pacing colts, including five sons of Captaintreacherous, and four competitors from the barn of trainer Tony Alagna. Round one winners Allywag Hanover, trained by Casie Coleman, and Capt Midnight, trained by Alagna, returned to the series following a week off and played major roles in Monday’s contest.
The opening quarter saw Captain Nemo surge out to grab the lead and post a :27.4 opener. Allywag Hanover and driver Sylvain Filion didn’t sit second for long and were out and moving for the top entering the turn.
Capt Midnight and driver Andrew McCarthy immediately moved out from fourth to follow Allywag Hanover, which set up a wicked second quarter. Allywag Hanover stormed by the half in :54.3, while Capt Midnight and McCarthy were forced to take back and drop into the two-hole.
Allywag Hanover continued his mission by reaching three-quarters in 1:22.1. Captain Nemo angled out from third to come first-up heading towards the third marker.
In the stretch, Captain Nemo battled by Allywag Hanover to claim the lead with an eighth of a mile to go. Capt Midnight had room to angle off the pylons to the far outside and powered up to duel down to the line with his stablemate, prevailing on the outside by a head. Captain Kirk finished third to complete an Alagna trifecta. Allywag Hanover faded back to finish fourth.
“I followed Sylvain (Filion) hoping I could put my guy on the front tonight,” said McCarthy following the victory. “He’s such a big long horse and he carries speed so easy I was hoping I could just send him down the road but it didn’t work out that way and I had to dump in the two-hole for a bit and I was lucky to get out and get him going and he likes to pass horses and got it done.”
Capt Midnight is now two for four with both victories coming in the Dream Maker and both by tracking down Captain Nemo.
McCarthy highlighted the intelligence of the son of Captaintreacherous after noting he was forced to fire up and then back down Capt Midnight in the opening half.
“That’s one thing about the Captains, they are pretty smart,” said McCarthy. “You can kind of hurt their feelings and they don’t take it to heart.”
A $350,000 Standardbred Horse Sale yearling purchase, Capt Midnight is owned by Marvin Katz, Kenneth Jacobs, Brad Grant and Capt Midnight Racing. The Alagna trainee has banked $26,000 in four starts and is eligible to the upcoming Nassagaweya, Champlain and Metro.
Trainer Alagna has now won the last two editions of the Dream Maker. Captain Ahab won last year’s final in 1:51.1.
The previous stakes record was 1:50.3 and set in 2017 by Summer Travel.
A $2 win ticket on Capt Midnight returned $6.60.