PLAINVILLE — The $2.24 million Massachusetts Sire Stakes kicks off at Plainridge Park this weekend on Sunday when 3-year-olds of both gaits and sexes will make their first starts in the state-bred series and continue on Monday when the 2-year-olds will hit the track.
All eight divisions will go for $60,000 each making the first weekend’s purse total $480,000.
The stakes feature three preliminary legs for both age groups and culminate with eight $100,000 finals that will be held at Plainridge on Oct. 25.
Horses from the barns of stake regular trainers George Ducharme, Domenico Cecere, Kevin Switzer and Sheena Cohen will be joined by many other national conditioners this year including Hall of Famer Ron Burke, Ake Svanstedt and Jessica Okusko. Hall of Fame driver Yannick Gingras will also be at Plainridge both days with drives in most of the divisions.
This year, the Massachusetts Sire Stakes holds the possibility of being the most productive on the track with some of its best performers ever bred slated to go postward. Since 2017, every Massachusetts stake record has been broken at least once. Seven records were broken last year alone (Five new, two of them broken twice), including all four pacing categories.
Here is a quick look at some of the horses that highlight the 2021 Massachusetts Sire Stakes who may rewrite the record books this year.
Horses competing on Sunday
3-year-old filly trotters
Moni For Lindy who won three legs of the New York Sire Stakes this year and finished second by a nose to Iteration in the $200,000 final at Yonkers in 1:57.1. Her 1.53.4 win at Vernon Downs on June 4 was a lifetime mark, but also made her the fastest 3-year-old trotting filly ever bred in Massachusetts.
(B-Moni Maker Stable O-Greathorse T-Domenico Cecere)
3-year-old colt trotters
Incommunicado (Chapter Seven-Gran Cavalla) was the 2-year-old male trotting champion in the MASS and is back to defend that title this year. He won the $115,583 Dexter Cup at Freehold in May and finished third in the $206,500 Empire Breeders Classic at Vernon Downs in June. He’s been freshened up since mid-July and has just qualified back at the Meadowlands in 1:56, last quarter in :27.4 in preparation for this stake. Now with earnings of $331,390 lifetime, he ranks as the 12th richest Standardbred ever bred in Massachusetts.
(B-Moni Maker Stable O-Knuttson Trotting, Little E, Arthur Geiger and David Stolz T-Ake Svanstedt)
3-year-old filly pacers
Purameri (American Ideal-JK Pure Pearl) was the MASS 2-year-old champion and set a new stake record of 1:52.4 in the process. This year she has been racing competitively in the NYSS where she made the $200,000 final and also competed in the $214,000 Empire Breeders Classic at Tioga Downs in August against Test Of Faith.
(B-3 Brothers Stable/Camelot Stable O-Purple Haze Stable T-Jessica Okusko)
Rightfully Mine (American Ideal-Leah) raced well in the NYSS this year, winning one leg in June and making the final, but had a rough trip there and finished last. She took a new lifetime mark of 1:52.2 taken at Plainridge Park in June and looks to use that track to her advantage.
(B-Monique Cohen O-Arthur Scussel, Monique Cohen T-Sheena Mcelhiney)
So Amazing (So Surreal-Teddy Ballgirl) is having a great year hitting the board 10 out of 12 starts in 2021. She won three legs of the NYSS Excel A series and made the $50,000 final, finishing fifth. She also took a new lifetime mark of 1:52.3 at Plainridge Park in June.
(B/O-Nancy Longobardi, Domenic Longobardi T-George Ducharme)
3-year-old colt pacers
Mullinax (American Ideal-Up Front Kellie Jo) was the 2-year-old MASS champion and set a new stake record of 1:53.4 in the process. He didn’t miss a check in any of his NYSS appearances including the $200,000 final where he finished fifth. He also finished third in the $104,000 Empire Breeders Classic in August and was race timed in 1:51.
(B-Ed Mullinax O-William Varney T-Mark ford)
Call Me Maverick (Western Maverick-Briefly) has been the leading 3-year-old pacing colt in Maine stake competition for two years. He was a perfect eight for eight in 2020 and 2-year-old MSS champion. He has won nine out of 10 starts this year — including his last eight straight — with one second due to broken equipment. His lifetime mark is 1:54 at Plainridge taken in stake action last year but he paced his best mile of 2021 in 1:55.3 over the half at Skowhegan.
(B/O-Upland Farm T-Alison Hynes)
Horses competing on Monday
2-year-old filly trotters
Moni Heist (Walner-Nothing But Moni) started in the New Jersey Sire Stake this year and has recently won two straight starts in the Kentucky Commonwealth series, taking a new lifetime mark of 1:55.4.
(B-Moni Maker Stable O-Moni Maker Stable T-Domenico Cecere)
2-year-old colt trotters
Wallet (Walner-Touch Of Moni) has made breaks in his only two lifetime starts but has since won twice in qualifiers and looked very strong in preparation for this start.
(B-Moni Maker Stable O-Ducharme, WInske, Winske, Michaels T-George Ducharme)
2-year-old filly pacers
Dudes Sweet Bet (Dude’s The Man-Sweet Bettor) has been racing in the NYSS and Excel A series, where she made the final. She also took a lifetime mark of 1:54.1 at Tioga Downs on August 22.
(B/O-Triple C Stables, Christopher Lems T-Jessica Okusko)
Shakeitoffscarlet (American Ideal-Lordy Miss Scarlet) has not seen any stake action this year but has been racing very well at Plainridge, where she has hit the board five out of six starts, winning twice and taking a lifetime mark of 1:55.1.
(B-Nelson Malin O-KDK Standardbreds T-Kevin Switzer)
Wolverina (Cheyenne Hollywood-Terri I Fra) has been stout in the Maine Sire Stakes all summer where she won three starts, has not missed the board and is coming off a lifetime best effort at Farmington in her last outing.
(B-Mike Graffam O-Mike Graffam, William Arnold T-Mike Graffam)
Pembroke Legacy (Baron Biltmore-Pembroke Oasis) has won five out of her seven lifetime starts — all in Maine Sire Stake action — with a best outing of 1:58.1 at Skowhegan and comes into this stake as the highest money earner of the division today.
(B/O-William Varney T-Valerie Grondin)
So Flo (So Surreal-Teddy Ballgirl) won a leg of the NYSS Excel A at Saratoga Raceway in 1:56.2 in August and made the final of that series as well. She has exceptional speed but can misbehave on occasion.
(B/O-Nancy Longobardi, Domenic Longobardi T-George Ducharme)
2-year-old colt pacers
Treacherous Tom (Captaintreacherous-Kate Is Well Said) has yet to win this year but has found his competition very tough so far. After finishing second in the Tompkins-Geers Stake at the Meadowlands in June, he moved to the Pennsylvania Sire Stake circuit where he has done very well with two thirds in four starts, making the $254,000 final. He has also been race timed in 1:52.1 at Pocono Downs this year.
(B-Fashion Farms O-Thomas Dillon, Scott Dillon T-Ron Burke)
Ugotaearnyrstripes (Deuce Seelster-Armbro BMW) is the freshman colt pacing leader in the Maine Sire Stakes and has five wins in only six lifetime starts. He comes into the this race fresh off a lifetime mark of 1:58.1 in a stake race at Bangor.
(B/O-Edward Blash T-Stephen La Casse)
Massachusetts Sire Stake schedule for 2021:
Sunday: 3-year-old First Leg
Monday: 2-year-old First Leg
Oct. 3: 3-year-old Second Leg
Oct. 4: 2-year-old Second Leg
Oct. 17: 2-year-old Third Leg
Oct. 18: 3-year-old Third Leg
Oct. 25: 2 and 3-year-old Finals