08/26/2016 11:03PM

Mohawk: Casual Breeze victories go to Emoticon Hanover, Caprice Hill

New Image Media
Caprice Hill overcame post ten to take her Casual Breeze division

A group of 20 3-year-old trotting fillies were split into a pair of C$97,000 divisions of the Casual Breeze Stakes Friday night at Mohawk Racetrack, and Emoticon Hanover and Caprice Hill made their sire Kadabra proud with impressive victories.

Emoticon Hanover was a gate-to-wire winner in the first division for driver Sylvain Filion and trainer Luc Blais. The daughter of Kadabra left alertly from post two to grab the lead, and it was lights out from there.  Emoticon Hanover posted fractions of 28, 57 1/5, and 1:26 2/5 before firing home in 28 seconds for the victory. Double Exposure left hard from post eight, landed the two-hole, and ultimately finished a length and a quarter back in second.  Jangone finished third, while Worldclass Hanover was fourth.

Following the race, Filion was very pleased with the Emoticon Hanover’s effort in the Casual Breeze, and her progression as a 3-year-old.

“I wanted to get to the front and control the pace, which we did, and she did it pretty handy,” said Filion, following the race. “Last year she was a little tough to drive, but this year she is way handier, so that makes her much better.”

Owned by Determination, Emoticon Hanover scored her fourth victory of the season Friday in her eighth outing. She now has eight career victories and a bankroll of C$436,658.  The Blais trainee paid $2.80 to win.

Caprice Hill continued her fantastic season by overcoming the ten-hole to win the second division in 1:53 3/5.  The Tony Alagna-trained filly was unhurried at the start by driver Randy Waples and eventually found a spot along the rail in sixth just after the opening quarter. Side Bet Hanover led the field to the half in 57 3/5, but was quickly confronted entering the far turn by a charging Caprice Hill, who took the lead before five-eighths.

After reaching the three-quarter pole in 1:26, Caprice Hill trotted home strongly in 27 3/5 to win by 3 1/4 lengths. Side Bet Hanover held on to second over a charging Flowers N Songs.

Following the race, Alagna passed along much of the credit for Caprice Hill’s excellent season to his mother, Donna Lee Ozment.

“Everybody who knows the filly knows that this is my mom’s pride and joy, and she’s done a great job with her,” he said. “(Caprice Hill) is just very easy on herself, rests, does all the right things, good eater, and that’s why she looks as great now as she has all year.”

Owned by Tom Hill of Hamilton, Ontario, Caprice Hill is nearing millionaire status with C$980,377 in lifetime earnings following the Casual Breeze victory.  Caprice Hill now has five wins in 2016 and has yet to finish outside the top two in eight starts this season.  She paid $2.90 to win.

--press release (Woodbine Entertainment Group)--