posted on 10/6/2011 11:03 am
Possess The Will and Pekoe Fashion give trainer Jim Campbell and owner Jules Siegel’s Fashion Farms twice the reason to smile. The 2-year-old colt trotters have combined to win eight of 14 starts and $295,793 entering Friday night’s (Oct. 7) International Stallion Stakes divisions at Lexington’s Red Mile.
“You can never have enough of any (horses) that go good for you,” Campbell said, adding with a laugh, “One has nothing to do with the other; it just makes me feel better. And I’m sure Mr. Siegel, too.”
Last week, Possess The Will won his division of the Bluegrass Stakes by one length over Big Chocolate in 1:55.1 with Tim Tetrick in the sulky. It was his third victory of the season, in seven races, and pushed his earnings to $135,414.
In his previous start, an elimination race for the William Wellwood Memorial at Mohawk Racetrack in Ontario, Possess The Will finished fifth and failed to advance to the final.
“He scoped sick after the race in Canada,” Campbell said. “We were very happy with the way he bounced back last week here and hope for another good race from him on Friday night. He’s a big colt and he’s just starting to get himself going now. He’s got the ability; it’s just a matter of everything coming together for him.”
Possess The Will is a son of Donato Hanover-Aurora Hall. He was purchased as a yearling for $135,000 at the Standardbred Horse Sale. His mother is a half-sister to multiple-stakes-winner Algiers Hall.
The colt is 2-1 on the morning line for his International Stallion Stakes division. Money On My Mind, out of the barn of Andy and Julie Miller, is the 9-5 favorite. Money On My Mind is making his first start since finishing second to The Game Plan in the Wellwood Memorial.
If all goes well following the International Stallion, Possess The Will will go to Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto for the Breeders Crown.
“I couldn’t be happier with the way the horse has progressed,” Campbell said. “He’s shown us a lot so far. We’re definitely looking forward to next year with him, too.”
Pekoe Fashion is a Fashion Farms homebred son of Broadway Hall-Orange Pekoe. His second dam, Oolong, won the 1999 Hambletonian Oaks.
Last week, Pekoe Fashion went off stride while leading at the halfway point and finished fifth in his division of the Bluegrass Stakes, which was won by From Above in 1:57. It was only his second loss in seven starts.
Pekoe Fashion is the 7-2 second choice in his International Stallion Stakes division on Friday. Uncle Peter, from the stable of trainer Jimmy Takter, is the 6-5 favorite. Pekoe Fashion will start from post six in a field of seven.
“He made a break last week, but (driver) Dave Palone said he hit the bike, so we’ll put a bigger bike on him this week and hopefully that will take care of it,” Campbell said. “He’s good gaited and he’s had a really good record so far this year. We’ll see what kind of trip Dave will work out with him.”
Pekoe Fashion was unbeaten on the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes circuit before finishing third in the sire stakes final to once-beaten stablemate Stormin Normand.
Following the International Stallion Stakes, Pekoe Fashion will prepare for the Matron Stakes at Dover Downs in November.
“He’s a nice mannered horse to be around,” Campbell said. “(Friday) will only be the second time he’s racing on the mile track, but he’s a good-sized colt, so the size of the track shouldn’t really matter to him. We didn’t get a very good read on it last week because he made the break going to the half. But the way he’s gaited, the mile track should be no problem for him.”
by Ken Weingartner, Harness Racing Communications