This week has been one for the history books for Woodbine Entertainment and its Woodbine Mohawk Park, as a new track record has been set. On Monday, December 5, 2022, James MacDonald became the first driver to record eight victories on a single-day harness racing card. He also emerged victorious and won the last seven races in a row.
MacDonald is one of the leading drivers in the harness racing industry, and so far, this year, he has recorded an impressive amount of 429 wins. This amount is more than 100 wins ahead of the second-placed driver Travis Henry. Mr. MacDonald boasts earnings of more than CA$9.4 million, which are by far the most by any driver in the country.
Setting New Track Record
On Monday, Mr. MacDonald began his soon-to-be historic night by guiding White Tiger in the second race of the race card. He succeeded in guiding the six-year-old gelding to the pole position from the eight-hole. The duo managed to get the win by performing a second quarter give-and-go, and thus finishing first with a time of 1:53.2.
The third race of the night was the last time MacDonald’s blue, white, and gold diamonds colours did not appear in the winning circle. After that, the driver went on a streak and won all races four through ten, thus putting a track record-equaling performance at the reins of Locatelli in the ninth race, the CA$34,000 Preferred Trot. His winning time of 1:50.4 matched the previous record by Mister Herbie in 2012.
Mr. MacDonald’s win also put him tied with Chris Christoforou for the single-day Woodbine Entertainment Group circuit Standardbred record. In the final race for the night, the driver rewrote the track’s history by steering Never Mind N to victory. Their finish time was 1:55.2. The next race at the track is scheduled for Thursday, December 8, 2022.
Here’s a list of all his wins from Monday – first one was in Race 2 with White Tiger and winning time of 1:53.2, next is in Race 4 with Look Like Moni with 1:53.4, Race 5 with Pointomygranson and a time of 1:51.4, Race 6 with Resolute Bay 1:54.2, Race 7 with P L Opportunity and 1:55, Race 8 with Quan Blue Chip 1:52.3, Race 9 with Locatelli 1:50.4, and Race 10 with Never Mind N and 1:15.2.
Just last week, Woodbine Entertainment announced some changes to its simulcast wagering hours at its Woodbine Mohawk Park. Starting from last weekend, Racebook betting at the Standardbred track will now be available from noon on Saturdays. Also, the track’s Tim Horton will also commence work at 12 p.m. on Saturdays.
Soon the operator’s horse racing events might be available in Ontario’s new iGaming market, said the group. Currently, the operator is pushing for the introduction of its races to be available on private sportsbooks in the province, but it needs a go-ahead from the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency. Initial reports were that this could become reality before the end of the calendar year.
Source: “MacDonald breaks WEG record with eight wins” HarnessLink, December 6, 2022