Magical Journey wires foes in GLADA at Northfield

Northfield, OH — Weather plays no favorites in harness racing and while torrential rain pummeled the Northfield Park half-mile oval on Sunday (May 26), Magical Journey (Kadabra), guided by 19-year-old Braiden Rhoades, pummeled his seven foes in winning the Great Lakes Amateur Driving feature.

The classy 8-year-old gelding led every single stride from his five post through fractions of :28.2, :58.1 and 1:28 before holding off the late charging Stoney Ridgeton, with John Konesky III in the sulky, to win by a length in 1:58.4. Walter’s Keepsake, driven by Larry Ferrari, saving ground in the garden spot all the way through, was another neck back in third.

In a post-race interview, when asked about the journey he gave Magical Journey, Rhoades said, “I have to give this horse all the credit. It was raining cats and dogs during the race but he kept his mind on getting the job done; determined, I’d say.

“He had his nose on the gate and kind of pushed it out of his way and opened daylight going into the first turn.

“Usually here, it might take a little longer but he was very sharp leaving and the only time he felt any pressure was at the top on the lane — and that horse (Manhattanup No Ice) made a break and we held them all off at the wire.”

Trained by Braiden’s dad, Bill Rhoades, for owners D Racing Stable and Earl Hill Jr., Magical Journey earned his first win of the year in six starts and sent his career earnings to $349,398. A former Open trotter, this was Magical Journey’s first start in GLADA competition and he rewarded his faithful with a $13.60 mutuel as fourth choice in the betting.

Courtesy of the generosity of all GLADA members donating their driving earnings for charitable distribution, countless worthy organizations, ranging from equine aftercare to re-training horses for second careers in therapeutics, among others, have benefited from its existence.

As GLADA spokesmen Steve Oldford and Larry Ferrari said, “This shows what our club can do for our communities and for our sport. Goodwill is always a winner.”

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