Farmington, ME — Four $14,000-plus divisions of Maine Sire Stakes for trotters sloshed through the wet going at Farmington Fair on Monday (Sept. 18) including a pair of Ivan Davies-trained and driven prohibitive favorites that were ultimately barred from the wagering.
The folks in the Fair’s mutuel department had such confidence that Wabanaki’s $15,166 Maine Sire Stakes for 3-year-old male trotters would have a predictable outcome, that they instituted place and show wagering only and barred the pre-ordained winner from the betting pools.
Davies took a seat in the heavy going with the son of Boy Band, and pulled his trusty steed out at the half to race uncovered through the third panel. At the head of the stretch the gelding had gained some separation but had to fend off the late charge of 26-1 longshot Eustis (John Beckwith-Gordon Corey) who got within a half-length of Wabanaki when they tripped the timer in a soggy 2:04.3. Eustis paid $54.00 to place. Outlawofthevalley (Kevin Switzer Jr.-Marc Tardif) finished third.
Owned by Anita ‘Bunny’ Anastosopoulos-Andrew, and bred by the late Mike Andrew, it was Wabanaki’s sixth win of the season.
In similar fashion, management determined that there would be no ‘wild endings’ in the $14,952 sophomore filly trot. Thus, Davies’ filly Wild Ending was unceremoniously barred from the wagering.
As expected, the dedicated daughter of Boy Band cruised coast-to-coast in 2:06.2 over the sloppy conditions to score by 4-3/4 lengths. Once again, owned by Anita ‘Bunny’ Anastosopoulos-Andrew, and bred by the late Mike Andrew, it was Wild Ending’s sixth win of the season. B R Glory (Andy Harrington-Lisa Watson) finished second and paid $20.00 to place. Melania’s Best (John Nason) was third.
Before the regular card, the 2-year-old trotters had their day in the liquid sunshine, where Pembroke Breeze cruised to victory in the $14,367 Maine Sire Stakes for the frosh fillies.
Driven by Heath Campbell for trainer Valerie Grondin, the daughter of Pembroke Slugger made every call a winning one, scoring in 2:06 on a surface deemed ‘good.’ Owned and bred by Bill Varney, it was the third seasonal victory for Pembroke Breeze. Twisted Venture (Mike Cushing-Sherry Cushing) finished second; Bernie’s Legacy (Ivan Davies) was third.
Bill Varney’s ‘Pembroke’ moniker got another workout with Pembroke Will as that gelding took the $13,971 event for 2-year-old male trotters in 2:10.1.
Varney owns and bred that son of Pembroke Slugger who was also driven by Campbell for trainer Grondin. Stablemate Chipper Dale (Grondin) made an uncharacteristic miscue and finished second.
The Maine Sire Stakes resumes at the Farmington Fair on Tuesday (Sept. 19) and continues through Wednesday (Sept. 20).
For more information about the Maine Sire Stakes, follow their Facebook page @MaineBreedersAssociation, or go to their website at www.mainesirestakes.com.