Cotolo’s Harness Review, News And NotesIf you are one of “the crowd” then you cashed a few tickets this weekend, though most of the returns were pale and paltry.
News And Notes
Colonial Downs will open its 15th harness racing season on Wednesday, Sept. 5 with a six-week campaign over only one-turn mile in harness racing. The meet goes through Oct. 14.
Director of Racing Craig Andow has put together a number of late-closer series spread over the six weeks. Most of the multi-leg events feature two preliminary legs and a final. Six of the 10 series feature races ranging from 5/8ths of a mile sprints to 1¼-mile marathons.
Wishing Stone, a multiple-stakes-winner, including the 2010 Kentucky Futurity, is coming back to the states. The trotter has been racing in Europe since the end of his sophomore campaign. Dewayne Minor, who co-owns the horse, said Wishing Stone left Sweden last week and is shipping to The Red Mile after several days in quarantine.
Minor said, “To have a horse like that in the barn … gives you a great incentive to continue doing what you do.”
Wishing Stone’s final appearance in Europe on Aug. 15 resulted in a second in the Jubilee Trophy in Sweden. In June, Wishing Stone won the Copenhagen Cup. In 2011, Wishing Stone won the French Grand Prix du Sud Ouest at 1-5/16 miles and also the Kings Trophy in Sweden. He was second in the Gran Premio Continentale in Italy.
Minor said the horse should be coming back in pretty good shape, adding he would have to “bring him back up to speed again, get his muscles going again where he’s speedy. There is way more speed here than [in European harness racing].”
The last time Wishing Stone raced in the U.S. he won the Matron Stakes at Dover Downs, one of six of his final eight starts in the states, including an American-National Stakes at Balmoral Park. He was second to Break The Bank K in the Breeders Crown for soph trotters, covered live by us for TwinSpires at Pocono.
Minor hopes Wishing Stone will race in the Pride In Progress Trot at Indiana Downs on Sept. 22. If not, the Allerage Farm Trot at the Red Mile on Oct. 7 is his next challenge. He also has the Breeders Crown and American-National on his schedule.
“There is a possibility we might race him again next year,” Minor said. “We’ll see how it ends up this year and go from there.”