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Ducharme’s Mass-breds shine at Plainridge Park
Thursday, May 17, 2018 - by Tim Bojarski, for the Standardbred Owners of Massachusetts

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Plainville, MA --- Walpole, Mass., native George Ducharme left his Vernon Downs base of operations to return home with two of his state-bred trotters and came away with two wins, two lifetime marks and a tie for a track record for his students after their day of work at Plainridge Park on Thursday afternoon (May 17).

Tom Melanson photo
Hashtagmadeyalook defeated nine rivals in a $12,500 Highland Light Series division.

Last year’s Massachusetts Sire Stake 2-year-old champion Hashtagmadeyalook bounced back from a disappointing start in a $40,600 New York Sire Stake at Vernon Downs last week to defeat nine rivals in a $12,500 Highland Light Series division for 3- and 4-year-old trotters at Plainridge.

Leaving from post three, Hashtagmadeyalook (Shawn Gray) took a quarter to get the lead, but when he did it was for good. After cutting fractions of :28, :57.3 and 1:26.3, Gray kept his trotter on task and held off a rush from a late-closing Now’s The Moment (Mike Stevenson) to win by a half-length in 1:55.4. The time was a new lifetime mark for the winner.

Hashtagmadeyalook ($3.20), who is a 2018 Hambletonian eligible, is owned by his breeder Ray Campbell Jr.

Ducharme’s other entry was 2016 2-year-old MASS champion Muscles Jared who made heads turn in the $12,000 conditioned overnight trotting feature. In a similar manner to his stablemate, Muscles Jared (Shawn Gray) left and cleared past the quarter and dictated every station after that.

After settling the field in with a tepid :57 half, Gray tapped the gas pedal and went back-to-back :28.1 and :28.4 quarters to win by five, stopping the clock in 1:54. The time equaled both his lifetime mark and the track record for 4-year-old trotting geldings. Muscles Jared ($3.20) is owned by Al Ross.

In the second $12,500 division of the Highland Light Series, J-S Miss Carolyn (Steeven Genois) scored an impressive gate-to-wire victory in 1:57.4. Owned by Adam Friedland and trained by Jim Nickerson, J-S Miss Carolyn ($8.80) scored her first win of the year, and at Plainridge, in her first ever trip here.

There were also two $10,000 divisions of the Ralph Waldo Emerson Trotting Series on Thursday. Saratoga invader The Lindy Treaty (Shawn Gray) took early cover before pulling first-up at the three-quarters to trot by the front-running Manssive (Ron Cushing) down the lane and win by three lengths in 1:54.3, which was a new lifetime mark for the 7-year-old. The Lindy Treaty ($13.80) is owned by Barry Wishard and is trained by Brett Derue.

The second division saw Jericho (Joe Di Stefano) follow cover second-over past the half to eventually out-muscle Candy Lane (Matt Athearn) by a nose at the wire in 1:55.1, which was yet another lifetime mark. Jericho ($14.20) is owned by Linda Kenney, Robert Kenney and the Di Stefano and Son Stable and is trained by John Di Stefano.

Shawn Gray led all drivers with three wins on the card.

Racing resumes at Plainridge Park on Friday (May 18) at 4 p.m.

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