July 5, 2024, by Chris Tully, for First Tracks Cumberland

CUMBERLAND, ME – With the Learn and Earn baby races behind them, the Pine Tree State-bred 2-year-old pacing colts will start earning their keep at First Tracks Cumberland on Friday (July 5) in two $15,986 divisions of the Maine Sire Stakes.

The action starts Friday in the 3:15 pm opener where five young lads will go behind the Wes Brown starting car with the hopes of being the next Standardbred star.  The early morning line favorite is Massive Speed (7-5, Walter Case Jr.-Marc Tardif) who took a 2:02.1 record three weeks ago.  Inside him is Dude’s Wanted Man (2-1, Heath Campbell-Valerie Grondin) who has won both of his qualifiers at Bangor.

Ridgecrest Dan (9-5, John Nason) leaves from the outermost post five, and was named after the late Dan Chamberlain, proprietor of Ridgecrest Horse Supply who parked his mobile tack shop outside of the paddock at many of Maine’s hotbeds of harness racing.

In race three another quintet of freshmen sidesteppers look to land the lion’s share of the $15,986 purse.  The favorite is Jax Attack (1-1, Case-Tardif) has several successful preliminary miles under his belt.  Just outside him is This Dudes Perfect (6-5, Campbell-Grondin) who also has some experience up at Bangor.

Friday’s card carries a total of 13 races, with all of the betting options and low take-outs that have made Cumberland a popular destination for punters.

Looking ahead to Saturday (July 6), Cumberland welcomes all the 2-year-old trotters for their first Maine Sires Stakes action, with two $15,000-plus divisions going postward as races one and three.    The filly trotters are first up in race one, and are led by Pandemic Princess (8-5, Campbell-Grondin)

Race three gives five trotting colts and gelding their time in the spotlight.  Katahdin Victor (6-5, Wallace Watson-Lisa Watson) is the early favorite and has already shown some flashes of brilliance.

Also on Saturday’s 12-race program of full fields is a $5,000 division of the Maine Amateur Driving Club (MADC) goes as race four.  The MADC is sponsored by the Blue Seal Feed Stores of North Yarmouth and Windham, Maine.

The First Tracks Cumberland meet continues throughout the Summer months with regular racing on Friday and Saturday each weekend during the extended pari-mutuel meeting, which runs through August 3. 

For additional information, visit our website at firsttrackscumberland.com, or find us on social media at https://www.facebook.com/FirstTracksCumberland/