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ar Badlands showed why he's a strong candidate for 2017 Horse of the Year at The Raceway at Western Fair District with a dominant performance in the Saturday afternoon (Dec. 23) feature event.


With a parade of eight straight gate-to-wire winners heading into the ninth race of the card -- the $8,500 Preferred 3 Pace for horses and geldings -- Goldstar Badlands would have to bust that form if he was to score from the trailing post at the London half-mile oval. Driver Scott Young was able to settle away in fifth early before sliding Goldstar Badlands off the rail to follow the cover of Adore Him (Paul MacKenzie) around the three-eighths mark.


Heading into the backstretch a half-mile later, Young shifted Goldstar Badlands into another gear and right-lined the stallion into the three-wide path to confront pacesetter Down On My Luck (Greg Dustin). The challengers shoved a nose in front as the field hit the third quarter, increased that lead to a half-length at the head of the lane and widened it with each stride to vanquish his seven rivals in a time of 1:56.2. Down On My Luck stayed for second with Bank Shot Hanover (Alfie Carroll) completing the triactor.


Trained by Heather Toll, Goldstar Badlands (Badlands Hanover - Rockin Lady) notched his 11th win of the season and 31st lifetime for owner Morley Bradshaw of Wilsonville, Ont. The winner's share of the purse lifted the horse's earnings to $215,221.