London, ON – Covered Bridge used a perfect covered trip to steamroll his way to victory in the C$150,000 Camluck Classic Invitational on Friday night (May 26) at The Raceway as Western Fair District.
Driven by Jordan Stratton, who won the race in 2017 with Bit Of A Legend, Covered Bridge got away fourth in the early going as triple millionaire This Is The Plan insisted on the lead through a quick :26.4 opening quarter with post seven starter Idealsomemagic A parked in the first-over position in the early stages.
Stratton was able to work his way out on the back of that parked-out rival and followed as long as he could before tipping three-wide at the three-quarter pole in 1:23.4. Covered Bridge got up alongside This Is The Plan at the top of the stretch with Whichwaytothebeach in close pursuit along the inside and Roll With The Flow closing from the back of the pack.
Covered Bridge was able to draw clear in the stretch for a 1-1/4 length decision with This Is The Plan holding second and Roll With The Flow charging late to land the show spot.
The victory was the third straight and eighth this season in 17 starts for the gelded son of American Ideal who is owned by Mark Ford of Campbell Hall, NY and trained by Jeff Gillis. The lion’s share of the purse vaulted the pacer to just shy of C$300,000 this season as he closes in on C$900,000 lifetime.
On the powerful Camluck undercard, Canada’s pacing queen So Much More won a thrilling edition of the C$50,000 Forest City Pace for driver James MacDonald in 1:53, just a fifth off the track record for pacing mares.
The race was an action-packed affair from start to finish with So Frisky playing hardball early and parking out Raptors Won who had attempted to leave from post three. So Much More, who sat just off the pace, was forced to go three-wide at the five-eighths and raced three-wide for much of the rest of the mile and was able to fend off Mystifying, who was flying from the back of the pack to finish second.
The victory was the 64th lifetime for the daughter of Big Jim who increased her career bankroll to almost C$1.4 million for owners Don & Ken Beatson, along with Cole England. It was redemption for So Much More who had a troubled trip in last year’s edition of the race.
A large on-track crowd produced a total handle for the 12-race card was just over $850,000 – a record wager for the Camluck Classic/Molson Pace program.
The Raceway has one more live program to end off the race season this Monday night (May 29) with first post at 5:50 p.m.