Vintage Master and Dan Dube got the job done in the Adios yesterday at the Meadows, defeating Mr. Wiggles and Well Said. I did not get to see the Adios Final until later last night, but I knew the result beforehand. I watched the race on video and at the half I said "how in the hell did Well Said get beat?" I would have made him 1-20 to carry on, come home in 55 flat, win by an easy three or four, and that was that. After the race, Ron Pierce told us he was tired. I guess the horse is tired. I would assume he will not race in the Holmes next week, but we'll see when the entries come out.
The Hambo elims were as advertised, with a twist. In elimination two, like Well Said, Federal Flex did not deliver, racing to a poor 4th place finish, and rocketing show prices. He made the final, however one would think Gillis and crew have some work to do.
Elimination one was Explosive Matter's and he won easily. Mike Lachance guided the very talented Hot Shot Blue Chip to an impressive second place finish. He is a player.
In the third and final elimination, Muscle Hill got a perfect trip and won easily in 152.3. The time off that trip was a little slow considering Muscle Hill is what he is. But I think he will show up next week and be very tight for the final. Luc Ouelette's colt raced really well to be second.
Later on in the evening, last years Jug winner Shadow Play was a neck short in the invite, proving what we all know - the horse is tough as nails, and has some serious issues. Dr. Ian Moore enlightens us on the various issues the colt has had this year through his Standardbred Canada blog. It would be nice for racing if they get this guy fixed up for the second half. You can't race on three and a half feet at this level and succeed.
Next week we get to see the Hambletonian Final. Muscle Hill will be no longer than 3-5 and we will see if he can deliver a huge performance, stamping himself as one of the best sophomore trotters in the last quarter century.