Threefiftytwo and Pemberton wrap up Gold season with wins

Milton, ON — Just hours after winning a Gold Series division with 2-year-old trotting colt Macho Martini at Flamboro Downs, driver Bob McClure and trainer Luc Blais were back in the Ontario Sires Stakes winner’s circle on Thursday evening (Oct. 8) at Woodbine Mohawk Park with the colt’s 3-year-old stablemate Threefiftytwo.

Threefiftytwo sprinted home to a 3-1/2 length win in 1:54. New Image Media photo.

Lining up at post five in the first of two $78,600 Gold Series divisions, McClure fired Threefiftytwo away from the starting gate but opted to tuck in behind Hayek and Sylvain Filion, who had the same idea from post four. Hayek led the field of six through fractions of :27.2, :57.3 and 1:26.2 with Threefiftytwo sitting patiently in the pocket. In the stretch McClure showed the fan favorite an open lane and Threefiftytwo sprinted home to a 3-1/2 length win in 1:54.

“Threefiftytwo has been a bit of a problem horse all year for Luc. He never seemed to be able to put it together when it counted, so it’s nice that tonight he finally showed his ability in a Gold event,” said McClure. “He’s sharp right now and hopefully he’ll be really good next week.”

The win was Threefiftytwo’s first in four Gold Series starts this season. The Royalty For Life son had recorded one third and two fifths heading into Thursday’s regular season finale. The win boosts his point total to 72 and sees him head into the Oct. 17 Super Final ranked fifth in the division standings.

Blais trains Threefiftytwo, whose only other win this season came in mid-July, for Determination of Montreal.

In the second division heavy favorite Pemberton romped along on the front end to a four length victory in 1:53.2. Driver Trevor Henry sent the Wheeling N Dealin son to the front from post three and Pemberton put up fractions of :28.4, :58 and 1:26 on his way to the effortless win. Babidibou tracked Pemberton throughout the mile to finish second and Port Perry closed hard for third.

“He’s been sharp all week, ever since the last race (Sept. 28) for some reason. He’s been great all week, he was great warming up. I didn’t want to say anything to Trevor because I didn’t want to jinx him, I just sent him out the same as I always do, but I was thinking in the back of my mind that he was maybe going to go a good race,” said trainer Paul Walker. “I kind of felt the track was a bit dead tonight, but it suited him anyway, and it was nice to know that if he has to he can race in front and do the same.”

The win was Pemberton’s third in Gold Series action and his seventh of the season. With 162 points the gelding will lead the 3-year-old trotters into the C$250,000 Super Final, which will feature the top 10 point earners.

“If I can just keep him like that for another week we’ll in good shape,” said Walker. “He’s been a great little horse this year and he doesn’t seem to be letting up yet anyways, so if we can get one more race out of him that will be great.”

Walker trains Pemberton for his wife Brenda Walker and daughter Christine Walker. Mother and daughter also bred the trotter, who boosted his earnings to $178,349 and his record to seven wins and one third in nine starts with Thursday’s victory.

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