Time is ripe for Coleman

ROB LONGLEY, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:20 AM ET

CAMPBELLVILLE, Ont. -- Being a two-time O'Brien Award winner as Canada's top harness trainer, Casie Coleman doesn't need directions to the winner's circle.

And at age 29, it's only a matter of time before she win's her country's richest race, the $1.5 million North America Cup.

So why not this Saturday with Art Colony, a pacer who at morning-line odds of 8-1 could reward those who back him at the windows as well.

"It would be absolutely unbelievable to win this race," Coleman said after the 3-year-old son of Artsplace drew Post 7 in the 10-horse field. "I think I've got a real shot."

Hard to argue when you check off his qualities, including the fact he never has been worse than second in 10 career starts. Then there is the man in the sulky behind him, driver John Campbell, who has won the race a record six times.

Despite all that, Art Colony is the fifth choice in the morning line headed by 2-1 favourite Well Said.

That designation is due in part to the fact that Art Colony was second in one of four elimination heats this past Saturday, a solid effort considering he had been battling sickness the past few weeks.

"He's definitely better than he was," said the Cambridge-based trainer, whose stable earned a whopping $5.1 million in 2008. "I trained him hard (yesterday) and he was good. He will be a different horse this week."

Unlike last year when Somebeachsomewhere was as close to a lock as you can get in racing, this year's 26th edition of the Cup appears much more wide open.

Well Said, the reigning Breeders Crown champ who drew Post 5 for trainer Steve Elliott and driver Ron Pierce, gets the early edge based on his 1:50 win in the fastest of four eliminations.

There's little doubt who the fan favourite will be -- Nova Scotia-based Keep It Real, who lost for the first time in his career this past weekend, finishing second to Well Said after a huge effort from Post 10.

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WHAT THE ODDS SAY

Post Horse Driver Odds

1. OK Boromir Luc Ouellette 15-1

2. Mr Wiggles Corey Callahan 15-1

3. Dial Or Nodial Brian Sears 4-1

4. If I Can Dream George Brennan 5-1

5. Well Said Ron Pierce 2-1

6. Keep It Real Steve Condren 3-1

7. Art Colony John Campbell 8-1

8. Chasin Racin David Miller 20-1

9. Annieswesterncard Tim Tetrick 25-1

10. Millionaire Cam Jody Jamieson 30-1


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