04/05/2012 9:47AM

Woodbine: San Pail heavy favorite in Glorys Comet final on Saturday

Lisa Photo
Golden Receiver looks for a series sweep in the Spring Pacing Championship at Woodbine on Saturday.

Defending champion San Pail, fresh off consecutive victories in preliminary legs, is the heavy favorite to capture Saturday’s $125,000 Glorys Comet final at Woodbine. The event is one of three series finals on a star-studded Woodbine card.

The 2011 Horse of the Year, San Pail made his eight-year-old debut two weeks ago in the first leg of the series, vanquishing the streaking Mister Herbie in the process. That four-year-old had been most impressive in two starts prior but couldn’t handle San Pail in their first encounter.

San Pail captured the opening leg in an impressive 1:52 1/5 mile and then posted the same clocking last week as Mister Herbie rested on the sidelines.

Those two top aged trotters meet again on Saturday. San Pail went over $3 million in career earnings with his victory last week and is likely to be a short-priced favorite again in the final, having drawn the pole position for trainer Rodney Hughes and regular pilot Randy Waples.

Leading driver Jody Jamieson guides Mister Herbie from post four. The son of Here Comes Herbie was a top performer on the rugged Ontario Sire Stakes program as a three-year-old last year earning $313,983 on the season. Jeff Gillis trains the gelding.

Gillis will also send out Frenchfrysnvinegar, last year’s Breeders Crown trotting mare champion, from post two. The mare is the lone female in the field of seven going postward in Woodbine’s second race. New Saturday first post time is 7:30 p.m.

Golden Receiver eyes sweep

The final of the Spring Pacing Championship for some of the sport’s finest older pacers is set as Woodbine’s eighth race of the night with a purse of $125,000. Golden Receiver has won seven of eight starts and looks for the series sweep from post five. Randy Waples will again drive the odds-on choice in the final.

Earlier this year Golden Receiver swept the Presidential Series at the Meadowlands and he hasn’t slipped since coming north of the border to Ontario. The Mark Harder-trained son of Village Jove has gone wire to wire in both preliminary legs.

The Spring Championship is not likely to be a cakewalk with the presence of second-round winner Melvyn as well as first-round winner Sparky Mark in the field of 10. Melvyn broke the 1:50 mark in his come from behind win a week ago scoring in 1:49 4/5 for driver Luc Ouellette. He’ll start from post three in the final. Sparky Mark took last week off after posting an identical 1:49 4/5 mile clocking in the opening round. Sparky Mark, a 13-time winner in 2011, has the driving services of Sylvain Filion from post nine.

Ten promising three-year-olds will meet in the $50,000 Youthful Series final, race 10 on the card. Piston Broke has been running smoothly on all cylinders in the opening two legs and looks to sweep the series.  The altered son of Shark Gesture posted the fastest mile of the series on March 19 scoring in 1:50 4/5. Robert Fellows trains and shares ownership in the sophomore who starts from post six.

The Youthful final looks like a handicap race on paper with leg winners Im The Pied Piper (post seven) and Tye Seelster (post ten) drawing outside of Piston Broke.