The second leg of the Bronte Epilepsy Research Foundation Amateur Series, with a pair of $10,000 finales looming next week; and a simulcast of the complete Breeders Crown program from Woodbine are on tap at Cal Expo Saturday night (October 29).
The Amateur series is being sponsored by Lou Pena and some of his owners. Between their generosity and the driver fees, a total of $7,000 beyond the purse monies will go to the Bronte Foundation. In addition, driver George Brennan has pledged an additional donation which will significantly augment that figure.
There is one event for males and one for distaffers, going in two divisions each. The first leg of the series found the pacers sporting $3,000 base claiming prices, while they will have $4,500 claiming tags this time around. The top eight purse earners from each group will compete in the respective $10,000 finales and there will be no claiming in that affair. It was also recently announced that there will be an on-track 500 T-shirt giveaway on that Saturday, November 5.
Last week’s opening leg saw Dave Siegel accounting for three of the four races, capturing both contests for the males with Rude Awakening and Serious Art and one of the distaff events with OG’s Si Bon. Amanda Fraser guided the other mare victress in Incredible Gambler.
Four of the pacers changed hands via the claiming box, including the aforementioned Serious Art who was taken after a six-way shake. Also claimed were Kamoda’s Fantasy, Sterling Chris and Just Plum Lucky. It will be interesting to see how much claiming takes place this weekend.
Free TrackMaster Cal Expo past performances for the next two Saturday programs will be available at trackmaster.com/calx and at calexpoharness.com.
Meanwhile, the complete 12-race Breeders Crown card from Woodbine will be simulcast on Saturday. The outstanding card features $6 million in purses and a pair of $100,000-guaranteed Pick 4s.
Thursday night’s (October 27) main event at Cal Expo is a $4,500 trot that brings out Franks Best and Putoneonnetformom. Franks Best is a 4-year-old homebred son of Armbro Scribe and the American Winner mare Inside Edition who is bred, owned and trained by Bob Johnson and will once again have Lemoyne Svendsen in the sulky. He comes into this assignment with $108,000 in his account and a 1:57.1 mark that was established in his most recent appearance.
The Johnson representative, who is gunning for a hat trick, kicked off his winning streak on September 23, coming from well off the pace with live cover to hang a head on Putoneonnetformom. He tracked that rival on October 7 and got the advantage at the wire by three-quarters of a length, then sat a perfect pocket journey in that last mile and was up by a length and a quarter while shaving three ticks off his career standard in the process.
Putoneonnetformom is looking to turn the tables on his archrival for owner/breeders Gerald, Jeff and Diana Cimini, trainer Rocky Stidham and pilot James Kennedy. The 7-year-old Trot For Joy offspring has won three of his six starts at this meet, settling for the exacta completion behind Franks Best on the other three occasions. Aston Boko, Carpathian Hooray, D Man and