Warrawee Koine survived a close finish to prevail as the favourite in Monday night’s single opening-leg division of the Silver Reign Pacing Series for three-year-olds at Woodbine Racetrack.
Mike Saftic guided the daughter of Astreos – My Gal Hunter, who was making her second career start, from post two in the bulky 12-horse field. She was able to leave effectively and grab early control of the race through a :27.2 opening quarter.
The strapping filly went unchallenged through the half of :56.4 and three-quarters of 1:26 and appeared well on her way to an easy victory.
However, she showed some signs of being green when she drifted wide in the stretch, allowing the pocket-sitting Have A Cigar a clear path up the inside. That challenger was able to get right up beside Warrawee Koine who found another gear and dug deep to pull out the victory in 1:54.3.
Warrawee Koine is now a perfect two-for-two for trainer Gregg McNair and owner Dr. Michael Wilson of Rockwood, Ontario. She was a $3,500 yearling purchase at the 2007 Forest City Yearling Sale.
The Silver Reign Series continues with second-round action next Monday night at Woodbine.
(courtesy Standardbred Canada & WEG)