Fast Lane Phillips put down

Sadness prevails around horsemen and fans at Fraser Downs after learning that Fast Lane Phillips had to be put down after he broke down in a race Monday at Mohawk Raceway in Ontario.

Fast Lane Phillips, a nine-year-old son of Just Camelot out of Stahaken and at one time the track record holder at the Downs, was owned by the B.C. trio of Phil Coleman, Jerry Blanchet and Loretta Jatis.

With Casie Coleman handling the reins, Phillips put in steps behind the gate but when back on stride was urged to quickly catch up to the other horses. Just as he pulled close after the first quarter he went down. He got up but it was realized he was in trouble with a broken hind leg and put back on the track where he underwent euthanasia.

Casie, the 20-year-old daughter of Phil and Linda Coleman, suffered ligament damage to an arm and will be out of action likely from four to six weeks.

Phillips, who last competed in a race at Fraser Downs on April 8, 2001, set the track mark of 1:54.1 (since broken) on Jan. 24, 1999. He had a lifetime mark of 1:52.4 and career earnings of more than $175,000 with 25 wins in 90 starts.

After a strong early career he was plagued by a front-leg injury and only raced five times as a six-year-old (1999) and twice in 2000. He had five wins in 12 2001 starts but Monday was only his sixth start of 2002...

BATTLE OF B.C. MARES ON HOLD: The much anticipated battle between top B.C.-bred mares Fast Lane Cruizin and Samantha Square will have to wait.

It was rumoured that the two would tangle Friday at Mohawk Raceway in an open fillies and mares event. They came close to, but never met in B.C. before moving east to Ontario.

But Fast Lane Cruizin, owned by Phil Coleman and Jerry Blanchet, bled in her last start and will get an extra week off to go onto Lasix. Meanwhile, Samantha Square, owned by Rick White and June and John Kauffman, will get this week off before heading into eliminations for the Milton Stake.

An injury had kept Cruizin out of action in 2002 until two weeks ago. She returned to take on the top fillies and mares Aug. 6 at Mohawk but did not get the best of trips and had to settle for seventh in the race which went in 1:51.4 (Eternal Camnation crossed the line first but was set back to third for interference).

On Aug. 17 at Woodbine, Eternal Camnation captured the $337,000-plus Roses Are Red Stakes in 1:50.3 with Samantha Square third. Since then Samantha has had some time off but White, co-owner of the four-year-old daughter of Albert Albert, reported last week she is ready to return to action.

- 30 -