CUMBERLAND, ME – Harness racing driver Aaron Hall grabbed both trotting race features at Cumberland on Sunday (Nov. 19), one for his dad Craig Hall and the other from his own stable.
Hall began his victorious afternoon in the $4,400 fourth race sending his own charge Namesmuscle (Muscle Mass) out to secure the lead from his pylon-based starting position. From that point it was a convincing tour of the Southern Maine circuit as the 11-year-old got every call, setting fractions of :30, 1:00.4, 1:31 while maintaining a length or so margin on his disciples.
When the 3-year-old Wariner (Walter Case Jr.) moved first over and challenged for the lead at the head of the stretch, Hall gave Namesmuscle his cue and strolled home a winner in 2:01.4. Scoring by three lengths, the odds-on favorite payed $3.20 to win for owner Bill ‘Yarmouth Lumber’ Phipps.
Richsnortherndream (Bruce Ranger) finished third.
Two races later Hall came right back with another wire-to-wire rout while driving his dad’s Matt So Sure (Noble Venture) to a 2:02.1 seasonal mark-equaling triumph.
Leaving from post five in the $4,800 featured conditioned trot, Hall scooted out to the front in a swift :30 opening panel. From there the 5-year-old got a 1:02 half-mile marker breather. Past the half, several would-be spoilers came first over which included J A T O (Dan Deslandes) who moved within a length of the leader at the 1:31.4 third panel.
Undeterred, Matt So Sure found another gear and scampered home a winner by 2-1/4 lengths, paying $3.80 as the wagering favorite. Co-owned and trained by Craig Hall with Cody Kelley, it was the fourth seasonal victory for the Maine-bred trotter who pushed his yearly earnings to $26,936.
Osprey Delta (Mike Stevenson) finished second; Prescott (Andy Harrington) was third.
MATT SO SURE REPLAY
In the third leg of the Maine Amateur Driving Club (MADC) Cain MacKenzie lit up the tote board with his own Martaritaondarocks (Pet Rock), scoring in 2:01.1 and paying $35.40.
Scoring from post seven and getting away last, MacKenzie made a bold three wide move down the backside to swoop the field and draw off and win by 8-3/4 lengths. The 4-year-old grabbed her third win of the season. MacKenzie also owns and trains seasonal earner of $23,582.
CAIN MACKENZIE / MARTARITAONDAROCKS REPLAY
The MADC is sponsored by the Blue Seal Feed Stores of North Yarmouth and Windham, Maine.
Like the entire industry, the horse people in Maine, and specifically Cumberland Raceway, were deeply saddened by the losses sustained from the barn fire at Tioga Downs.
Many of the trainers and drivers participating at Cumberland on Sunday, November 26, will be donating their percentages to the southern tier Harness Horseman’s association in an effort to help those affected by this tragedy.
Anyone that would like to contribute or participate in this benefit please contact Aaron Hall or Chris Tully.
Racing continues at Cumberland Raceway on Saturday & Sunday (Nov. 25 & 26) with an 11 am post time. First Tracks Cumberland in Maine will transition to three days each week (adding Fridays) beginning December 1 and continuing through Christmas Eve, 2023.
For more information go to our website.
Follow us on Facebook at @FirstTracksCumberland.
For complete race results, click here: US Trotting results.
by Chris Tully, for First Tracks Cumberland