Apaches Fame opened up a big lead and just held off the hard charge of Mark Johnathan to win the $1 million North America Cup by a nose at Greenwood Race Track Saturday night. The winner was clocked in 1:53 4/5 .
Apaches Fame, driven and trained by William "Bud" Fritz, became the first Canadian-bred 3-year-old pacer to win Canada's richest harness race.
His trip was aided when Beach Towel, the 4-5 favorite, broke stride while on the lead near the first quarter.
Apaches Fame, the 9-5 second choice, paid $5.90, $4.10 and $4.20. Mark Johnathan, driven by Doug Brown, returned $13.60 and $10.20. Road Machine, driven by Trevor Ritchie, paid $15.50 to show.
Apaches Fame, who gets the winner's share of $500,000, increased his lifetime earnings to $802,723. He has won six of seven starts. He was second by 5 lengths to Beach Towel in last week's Cup elimination heat.
Regal Silk scores muddy win
FORT ERIE -- A heavy rain forced Saturday's eighth race at Fort Erie Race Track to be moved from the turf to the main track and the switch, as expected, worked to the advantage of Regal Silk.
A good mud runner who had won in sloppy going at Fort Erie last month, Regal Silk had not been as impressive in her most recent start on the grass.
Consequently, she was not favored Saturday and returned $20.30 for her victory in the 1 1/1 6-mile race. Victorious Ashley finished second to form an exactor worth $156.40.
Punky QB captures feature pace
Punky QB won on a wire-to-wire effort in the $4,500 featured seventh race pace at Buffalo Raceway.
Trainer-driver Tom Agosti directed Punky QB to a 2-length victory over second-place Udalafesta in 2:04 2/5 over a sloppy track.
The 4-year-old horse's lead diminished to a quarter-length at the top of the stretch, but Agosti's pacer pulled away from Dave McNeight Jr. and Udalafesta as he neared the wire.