MILTON, September 19, 2020 – A scramble finish with multiple breakers saw Chestnut Hill at 60-1 shoot up the rail to a stunning victory in $560,000 Canadian Trotting Classic on Saturday night at Woodbine Mohawk Park.
All eyes were on heavy-favourite Ready For Moni in the rich event for three-year-old trotters. The Nancy Takter trainee and driver Yannick Gingras made the front in the second-quarter and appeared poised to close out the victory coming down the lane, but a rare miscue in the final-eighth opened the door for several closing rivals.
Chestnut Hill and driver Andy McCarthy had been following along sixth and had dived down to the rail for his late bid. The ‘Nifty’ Norman trainee was full of trot late and somehow was able to avoid losing all momentum when squeezing by the breaking Ready For Moni, reaching up by half a length in 1:53.2.
“Pretty close,” laughed McCarthy when asked about how close he was to danger when avoiding the breaking horse. “I kind of yelled out to let Yannick (Gingras) know there was someone on the inside of him.
“It worked out that he heard me and didn’t want to crash into me, so he did a good job getting that horse out of the way safely and it worked out good for me and I got to sneak up there.”
Play Trix On Me made a first-up bid on the far turn and nearly came through for the victory, finishing second in the middle of several rivals. HP Royal Theo was charging on the outside in the lane when he also made a break, finishing third placed sixth for a lapped on break.
Jula Trix Treasure was moved up to third, while Threefiftytwo jumped up to fourth.
A son of champions Muscle Hill and Poof Shes Gone, Chestnut Hill was coming into Saturday off a win in the Pennsylvania Sires Stakes Consolation and now has three wins in 11 starts this season and five wins overall. The Norman trainee made over $248,000 at age two and was sitting on $86,169 earned in 2020 prior to the Canadian Trotting Classic.
“I’ve been watching this horse and he has been sneaky good,” said McCarthy. “I ended up in a spot that I wasn’t too happy about heading around the last turn, but I was able to shake him out and sneak him back up the inside.”
Chestnut Hill, who was a $410,000 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale purchase in 2018, is owned by Mel Hartman, David McDuffee and Little E LLC.
A $2 win ticket on Chestnut Hill returned $122.90.