Trois-Rivieres, QC – The Hippodrome 3R featured the first race program without the use of whips on Sunday and all 11 races went without a hitch. The experiment of “whipless” racing will also take place next Sunday, which is closing day for the 2018 season.
H3R’s leading driver the past two years, Stephane Brosseau, put on a clinic on handling a trotter without a whip in the sixth race Preferred Trot with Upvote Hanover.
Holiday Party (Pascal Berube) was first off the starting gate from post five, grabbing the early lead with Caroluzzo (Stephane Gendron) sitting in the pocket-seat and R Rkadabra and driver Francis Picard stuck coming first-over. They raced past the opening quarter mile in :28.2 as Holiday Party held firm to his lead. R Rkadabra was parked out and following his outside cover was Upvote Hanover as they passed the half-mile marker in :59.3.
Then in the backstretch, Brosseau moved Upvote Hanover three-wide and they were able to clear past R Rkadabra before the three-quarters in 1:30 and kept gaining ground on race leader Holiday Party.
In the stretch, Upvote Hanover kicked in another gear for Brosseau as they pulled away and won by two lengths in 2:00.2. Second at 17-1 was EAU Naturelle (Simon Delisle) with Holiday Party third.
It was the third straight win and 10th victory on the year for Upvote Hanover. The four-year-old gelded son of Kadabra is trained by Yves Tessier and owned by Francois Morin of Beauceville. He paid $4.30 to win.
In the Preferred Pace, Rainbow Palace, the lone mare against seven male rivals, was able to show her heels to the boys by wiring the field for driver Francis Picard in 1:58.1. That was the fastest mile on the below freezing race card.
Chaleurs Ad (Berube) was first on the lead with Rainbow Palace challenging on the outside before taking the lead after a speedy opening quarter mile in :27.4. Rainbow Palace then led the way to the half mile in :58 with Hooter Scooter (Stephane Brosseau) coming first-over and giving cover to D J Power (Pierre Luc Roy) second-over.
In the backstretch, driver Stephane Gendron took Ufdragons Rocket three-wide as they tried to loop the field past the three-quarters in 1:28.1. Coming down the stretch, Ufdragons Rocket began to fade and Rainbow Palace was able to hold off Hooter Scooter to win by a neck. Chaleurs Ad was third.
Sired by Royal Mattjesty, Rainbow Palace is trained by Dominique Picard and owned by Francis Picard of Warwick. She paid $8.60 to win.
Track Notes: Both Pascal Berube and Pierre Luc Roy had driving doubles and both Yves Tessier and Stephane Hubert had training doubles. Next Sunday, which is the final live race card of the 2018 season at the Hippodrome 3R, will also feature “whipless” racing. Both the leading driver and trainer awards will be presented. For more information, visit www.quebecjockeyclub.com.