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Big Grand Circuit Saturday at Woodbine Mohawk Park
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[b]Big Grand Circuit Saturday at Woodbine Mohawk Park[/b]

This Week: North America Cup, Fan Hanover, Roses Are Red, Goodtimes and Armbro Flight finals, Woodbine Mohawk Park, Milton, Ontario.

Schedule of events: The Grand Circuit spotlight will be on Woodbine Mohawk Park this weekend as the Ontario oval hosts five lucrative stakes finals on Saturday night (June 16) led by the C$1 million Pepsi North America Cup for 3-year-old colt pacers. Also on the card will be the C$415,000 Fan Hanover for 3-year-old filly pacers, the C$370,000 Roses Are Red for older mare pacers, the C$266,000 Goodtimes for 3-year-old colt trotters and the C$250,000 Armbro Flight for older mare trotters.

Complete entries for the Mohawk races can be found by clicking on this link.

Last time: Homicide Hunter and driver Aaron Merriman moved to the lead following the halfway point of Saturday’s (June 9) Charlie Hill Memorial and never looked back, winning the $200,000 event for older trotters by 4-1/2 lengths over In Secret in 1:50.3 on a track labeled good at Eldorado Scioto Downs. Charmed Life finished third.

The winning time equaled the world record for an older gelding trotter on a five-eighths-mile track and was a stakes and track record.
Defending champion Crazy Wow and two-time Dan Patch Award-winner Marion Marauder were scratched sick, reducing the field to seven horses. Race favorite Will Take Charge went off stride at the start and finished sixth.

I Know My Chip took the early lead in a :26.3 opening quarter-mile before seeing Smalltownthrowdown get the top spot prior to the half-mile point. Driver Sam Widger moved I Know My Chip back to the lead at the half, reached in :54.2, but faced pressure from Homicide Hunter, who was in front by the time he reached three-quarters in 1:22.

Homicide Hunter is a 6-year-old gelding by Mr Cantab out of Evening Prayer. He is owned by Crawford Farms Racing of New York and trained by Chris Oakes. The horse was bred by Patrick Graham.

For the year, Homicide Hunter has won two of three races and earned $116,500. For his career, he has won 32 of 65 starts and banked $1.22 million.

Complete recaps of the weekend races are available at the Grand Circuit website.
 
Grand Circuit Standings: In 2018, the Grand Circuit leaders in three categories (driver, trainer and owner) will once again be tracked on a points system (20-10-5 for the top three finishers in divisions/finals and 10-5-2 for the top three finishers in eliminations/legs). Winbak Farms is the sponsor for the 2018 Grand Circuit awards.

Here are the leaders following the past weekend.

Drivers: 1. Tim Tetrick – 311; 2. Yannick Gingras – 211; 3. Jordan Stratton – 154; 4. Jason Bartlett – 139; 5. David Miller – 82.5.
Trainers: 1. Ron Burke – 238; 2. Peter Tritton – 122; 3. Jim King Jr. – 121; 4. Jimmy Takter – 85; 5. Richard Banca – 75.
Owners: 1. Vonknoblauch Stable - 107; 2t. Burke Racing Stable – 57.9; 2t. Weaver Bruscemi – 57.9; 4. Richard Poillucci - 56; 5. Jo Ann Looney-King – 50.
Looking ahead: Next weekend will see Grand Circuit action taking place at The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono, with eliminations for the Ben Franklin (older pacers), Earl Beal Memorial (3-year-old colt trotters), Max Hempt Memorial (3-year-old colt pacers) and James Lynch (3-year-old filly pacers) on Saturday (June 23).
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