Maine’s top trotters to slug it out at Fryeburg

Cumberland, ME — The cream of the crop of Maine-bred 3-year-old trotters will make one final appearance at the historic Fryeburg Fair on Thursday (Oct. 6) before heading to the rich $240,000-plus Maine Breeders Stakes sophomore finals on Oct. 15 at Bangor.

Quite a big deal in its own right, people come from far and wide to attend the ‘Blue Ribbon Classic’ Fryeburg Fair. As the folklore goes, “it was a chilly day in March of 1851 when a few local farmers and merchants got together and decided to show off their harvest, produce, cattle and wares to the community.”

Having grown exponentially, according to Fryeburg Fair Superintendent of History, Barbara Hill, it is the area’s “largest agricultural fair, second in New England in size only to Eastern States in Massachusetts.”

At present, the Fryeburg Fair encompasses 185 acres, has over 100 buildings, with the eight-day event hosting over 8,000 animals as well as a full week of harness racing.

Katahdin Mark (Gary Hall) is the leading 3-year-old trotting colt in Maine. Shelley Gilpatrick photo.

In Maine-sired trotting action, sophomore male point leader Katahdin Mark (Gary Hall) will slug it out with runner-up Warriorofthevalley (Andy Harrington/Marc Tardif) in the $18,489 MSBS 3-year-old colt and gelding trot. Programmed as race three, the six entrants are all eligible for the $60,000-plus final next week, but this event represents the last chance for this diagonally gaited set to get a solid tightener before the big money is on the line.

Katahdin Mark has drawn post three for his trainer/driver Gary Hall, and will look to add to his already impressive 7-for-11 seasonal stakes record. Owned and bred by James and Betsey Kelley, the son of Noble Venture has been installed as the 5-2 morning line favorite.

His current nemesis, Warriorofthevalley, is part of a Leighton Property ownership entry (7-2) and scores from post two. The son of Pembroke Slugger has not been worse than third in 10 of 11 stakes races this year.

The Valerie Grondin-trained Chamorro has the outside post six for regular driver Heath Campbell. Third in the point standings, the son of Pembroke Slugger has been second or third in eight of 11, but has yet to win a heat in 2022. He is 5-1 on the morning line.

The distaff group goes before the regular card in the $18,286 MSBS 3-year-old filly trot, with home run leader Maplewood Slugger (Andy Harrington/John Nason) batting clean-up from post two.

The undisputed point leader in the group, Maplewood Slugger is the homebred property of Maxine Hadlock and has won six times in 2022.

Trainer Valerie Grondin sends a solid one-two punch of Pembroke Honcho (Aaron Hall, post three) and Pembroke Faye (Heath Campbell, post one) into the fray. Both are owned by Bill Varney and by the sire Pembroke Slugger. Each filly has a pair of victories and are in the top four in the point standings.

Rounding out this group is Show No Tears (John Nason) who has finished on the board in seven of 13 seasonal outings. The daughter of CR Power Glide is owned by Carolyn Corso and Diann Perkins and was bred by Lynn-Marie Plouffe.

Two $18,000-plus MSBS divisions for 3-year-old filly pacers race on the regular Fryeburg card on Friday (Oct. 7), with the 3-year-old colt pacers coming in with one division on Saturday (Oct. 8).

For more information about the Maine Standardbred Breeders Stakes, follow our Facebook page @MaineBreedersAssociation, or go to the Maine State website.

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