MILTON, September 4, 2021 — Driver Todd McCarthy showed he demanded respect with 6-5 favourite Allywag Hanover as he took the lead, retook the lead and left his competition in his dust to win his first race in Canada, the $590,000 Canadian Pacing Derby Final, on Saturday (Sept. 4) at Woodbine Mohawk Park.
A $40,000 supplement to the Canadian Pacing Derby, Allywag Hanover was sent off as the even-money favourite in the field of 10.
Leaving from post 7, McCarthy made the lead with the four-year-old Captaintreacherous gelding to a :26.3 first quarter before yielding control to Catch The Fire moving for the backstretch. Midway up the backside, McCarthy circled Allywag Hanover back to the lead to pocket Catch The Fire to a :54.3 half while the backfield waited for a covered flow to develop.
With a line of horses waiting for cover, Cattlewash had room to rush first over into the final turn and challenge Allywag Hanover to three-quarters in 1:22. His challenge promptly proved futile off the corner as Allywag Hanover hustled clear of the field, striding under wraps to a 2-3/4-length victory in 1:49 over Catch The Fire. This Is The Plan rode the pylons to finish third and Cattlewash faded to fourth.
“He’s just been terrific,” McCarthy also said. “I was lucky enough to pick him up at the right time, and Brett’s got him razor sharp right now. It was a big thing to come here, and to supplement certainly wasn’t cheap.”
McCarthy’s victory was his first on Canadian soil from just his second drive, which came earlier on the card with Peaky Sneaky in the Roses Are Red final. McCarthy moved to the United States from Australia after many years as one of the leading drivers of the nation.
“It’s very surreal,” McCarthy said. “I’m thankful for the opportunity to be here under the circumstances.”
Owned by Allywag Stable, Allywag Hanover collected his seventh win from 14 starts this season and his 15th from 36 overall, earning $895,945. Brett Pelling conditions the $4.20 winner.
– Ray Cotolo for Woodbine Communications